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Mindful ActivitySatisfy Your Senses

Satisfy Your Senses

From choosing what to eat to savoring every last bite, food is just better when you’re fully engaged. Grab a snack, and let’s practice tuning in to all five senses.

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In this exercise, we'll explore the five senses. This exercise is best done when you're ready for a snack and can set aside a couple of minutes. When you're ready, grab a few small food items that you can eat without preparation and do this exercise. Let's start by gathering three different foods from around the kitchen. It's best if you do this without taking your preferences into account. Serve up mouthful-size portions of each food, and place them on a plate in front of you, making sure that the foods are cleaned and safe to eat. Pause this audio and begin playing again when you've finished. Next, sit down on a chair with the plate directly in front of you. With your eyes closed, select one of the foods to taste. Pick it up and hold it in your hands. Take your time to explore the food with your hands, commenting on it out loud, describing what you feel. This will encourage you to be much more thorough with your descriptions. Take time to notice the texture, and the temperature, and see how the mind immediately projects an image of how you think it looks, even though you can't see it. Open your eyes, and place the food back in its spot on the plate directly in front of you. Now, place your hands in your lap. Having already taken away the sense of sight to help you focus, you are now going to take away the sense of touch, allowing you to focus even more intently on the flavors, sounds, and smells. Now, lean in and bring your nose down to just above the food on the plate so you can smell it. Close your eyes. Try inhaling deeply and with long slow breaths, and then taking shorter, sharper breaths to pick up every possible smell. Open your eyes. Pick up the food again and gently place the food on your tongue, closing your eyes once more. Let the food just rest on the tongue for a moment to see what flavors you notice. Close your mouth and begin to move it around with the tongue. Pick out which flavors are most obvious. Where in the mouth did you taste them? The back of the tongue? The roof of the mouth? As you begin to chew, pay attention to the sounds you hear. Do you notice a crunch, or a pop? Finally, as you swallow that mouthful, pause a moment to reflect on that experience. How did it feel to engage all of your senses for that bite? Did you enjoy the food? Were you surprised by anything? Repeat these steps as you explore the other foods you have put on your plate, and have fun. We look forward to seeing you in the next lesson....


TypeMindful Activity
Duration3 min

About your teachers

  • A former Buddhist monk, Andy has guided people in meditation and mindfulness for 20 years. In his mission to make these practices accessible to all, he co-created the Headspace app in 2010.

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  • Eve is a mindfulness teacher, overseeing Headspace’s meditation curriculum. She is passionate about sharing meditation to help others feel less stressed and experience more compassion in their lives.

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  • As a meditation teacher, Dora encourages others to live, breathe, and be with the fullness of their experiences. She loves meditation’s power to create community and bring clarity to people’s minds.

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  • Kessonga has been an acupuncturists, therapist, and meditation teacher, working to bring mindfulness to the diverse populations of the world.

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  • Rosie Acosta has studied yoga and mindfulness for more than 20 years and taught for over a decade. Rosie’s mission is to help others overcome adversity and experience radical love.

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