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No Electronics During Meals: Well-Being Practice

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No Electronics During Meals This Week

Simple Instructions:

  1. Do not use your mobile phone, tablet, computer, television, or radio during meals. This means phone calls, texts, email, Google, videos, podcasts, or social media — for work or for play.
  2. You must do this for two meals each day — breakfast, lunch, and/or dinner — to get credit for the day.
  3. This does not apply to snacks or eating food between meals (e.g. you can snack on nuts while you are on a phone call or surfing the web).
  4. You may have non-radio music playing in the room via a stereo, iPhone, etc, but it must be exclusively music.

Watch this video for an explanation of this Well-Being Practice from Whole Life Challenge co-founders Andy Petranek and Michael Stanwyck.

Why Is This Practice Important?

The practices and traditions we have around food can give us energy, connect us to our community, and even define who we are. Our eating practices can affect our emotions in many positive ways.

Given just how important eating is, it’s amazing what short shrift it gets in modern life. We do it standing up, speed through a drive through, “grab a bite” when we have time, and answer emails while we eat. We treat eating like we treat filling the gas tank.

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It’s no longer odd to see someone triple-tasking at mealtime – eating, trying to be in a conversation with someone at the table, and texting someone else between bites. So the state of our health and relationships can’t come as any real surprise.

As a culture of “progress” (translated: “speed”), we’ve largely disconnected from that which nourishes our body and soul. We “make time for it,” do it in passing, and sometimes even do it as an afterthought.

And we’re paying the price.

This week, you will not simply change your “diet.” Through the practice of using no electronics during meals, you will explore a different relationship with your food, your community, and yourself. You may see what it’s like to have eating play a totally different role in your life. Imagine what it would be like if the time you spent eating fed more needs than just the grumbling in your stomach.

For More on This Practice

Joe DiStefanoCould you go a week without your phone, email, Facebook, or texting? Joe DiStefano, Director of Sport and Training Initiatives at Spartan Race, found a “digital detox” was exactly what he needed to break out of stress and stagnation.

Listen to this podcast to learn why Joe believes escaping from our digital prison can be one of the most important things we do for ourselves.

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Michael Stanwyck
Michael Stanwyck is the co-founder of The Whole Life Challenge, an idea that developed during his seven years as a coach and gym manager at CrossFit Los Angeles.

He graduated from UCLA with a BA in philosophy as well as a degree from the Southern California School of Culinary Arts, and feels food is one of the most important parts of a life - it can nourish, heal, and bring people together.

Michael believes health and well-being are as much a state of mind as they are a state of the body, and when it comes to fitness, food, and life in general, he thinks slow is much better than fast (most of the time). Stopping regularly to examine things is the surest way to put down roots and grow.

He knows he will never be done with his own work, and believes the best thing you can do for your well-being starts with loving and working from what you’ve got right now.