Joy Diet

Jamie Ridler is doing the Joy Diet by Martha Beck as a book club and I am joining in the reading.

This is the final chapter and it’s about feasting. I’m sure those of you who celebrated Thanksgiving recently know about feasting.But how many of you really tasted your food? Savored it?

And feasting is more about food. To be a feast, Beck says there needs to be a sequence of elements: celebration, nourishment and thanks.

Celebration requires a ritual that makes it special. It can be elaborate or a minor rite. You probably already have rituals. For example, before writing blog posts I do a fun writing exercise. Before bed I always lay out my clothes for the next day. Saturdays my husband makes breakfast. Sundays we have dinner at lunch time.

You can be nourished by food – if it’s what you really enjoy and you must enjoy what you eat, plus you need to eat it mindfully. You can be nourished by beauty – color, painting, music, a good movie, nature. You can be nourished by rest and relaxation – spa types, sleep, stretching, touch. We can be nourished by brain candy- TV, magazines, cartoons, cat movies on YouTube. And finally we can be nourished by love – exchanging affection, compliments, expressing love.


Anything that feeds your true self physically, emotionally, intellectually or spiritually can be a feast.


The final step is gratitude. Giving thanks is so important. You realize how really great your life is – even when it seems it isn’t.

Martha Beck suggests at least 3 feasts a day. Some of mine this week:

  • Enjoying the silliness and music of the film Mama Mia
  • Thanksgiving dinner with my family.
  • Playing Boggle and Upwords with my family.
  • Sleeping 12 hours one night.
  • Gave myself a pedicure.
  • Singing to the CD’s on our drive home.
  • Petting the cat who really missed us.

How can you feast this week?

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