How to Be Mindful While Grocery Shopping

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Meditation for Real Life

“It’s easy to hurry through grocery shopping in order to get it out of the way because it’s time consuming and can be unpleasant. But instead of resisting the task, get curious and become open to the experience, using it as an opportunity to learn about yourself and the world around you.” — Donald Altman, a mindfulness teacher and author of books including “The Mindfulness Toolbox.”

Plan your trip in advance. Knowing what you need at the store can help you avoid unwanted distractions. It can also help curb any spontaneous desires that might come up while wandering the desserts aisle.

Take two or three deep breaths before going into the store. The grocery store can be an overwhelming place.

Even as you confront the sights, smells and sounds inside, deep breathing can help you stay more present.

As you shop, be sure to experience the store with all your senses. What scents do you notice? What colors, shapes and images do you see? Feel your feet on the floor, and the grocery basket in your hands. If your mind starts to wander, just notice that and come back to the breath.

As you select your groceries, be aware of where they came from — fruits and vegetables from farms and packaged goods from factories. If you are buying animal products, consider that choice.

Be thankful. As you consider where this food came from, take a moment to cultivate gratitude for the choices you have, and your access to such an abundance of food.