6 Years Recovered

Practice self-care, loves; this post may be triggering to some.

six candles recovery anniversary | MindBodyPlate

Today is a special day for me – one of my favorite days of the year. September 3rd is my recovery anniversary, and today marks 6 years since the last time I binged and purged.

I blogged about my recovery anniversary last year, but a lot has changed since then. Last year I started the day by taking my favorite yoga class; this year I woke up at 5:30 AM to teach a yoga class.

Last year I thought that self-care was something extra you made time for every day; this year I’ve learned that every facet of life and every choice you make is an opportunity for self-care (self-care isn’t the frosting on the cake, it’s the cake itself).

Last year my ideas about what I should be doing with my life were getting in the way of the actual doing; this year I have a private practice which offers nutritional coaching, private yoga sessions, and peer coaching for those in recovery from eating disorders, and I’m in the early stages of planning the New York City debut of my one woman show about food and body image.

The long view almost always highlights growth — I think that’s why I like anniversaries. Because, individually, most of the last 365 days felt like nothing was happening, like I was getting nowhere. But the sum is greater than its parts, as they say.

peanut loves maple syrup | MindBodyPlate

I want you to know that ‘6 years recovered’ does not mean I have a perfect relationship with food. Just yesterday, for example, I was so frustrated with the logistics of setting up my new laptop that I ended up eating a ramekin full of peanut butter mixed with maple syrup… with a spoon.

…and then I went back for seconds.

Emotional eating at its finest, folks. Were there elements of a binge there, where I felt out of control? Sure. The difference is that after it was done I didn’t throw up my hands and say, “Well, now that I’ve totally blown it, I better eat everything else in the kitchen.” The difference is that I didn’t want to purge or punish myself at the gym. The difference is that I knew a little bit too much peanut butter would not send my weight or my body image spiraling out of control. The difference is that I didn’t beat myself up.

Sarah Kit Farrell laughing | MindBodyPlate

Squished on the subway and loving it!

Actually, I had a bit of a chuckle. I mean, we all get frustrated sometimes — let’s be real, especially when setting up new electronics. Of course I lost a bit of control as my brain became overwhelmed. Of course my body tried to comfort itself. And of course it chose the path of least resistance (dietary fat and sugar!!!).

That I can hold yesterday’s mini-binge with empathy, love, and a bit of humor is the real sign that I am recovered.

Just as all of the changes in one year may not be apparent until the year is over, the hundreds and thousands of mini-steps towards recovery may not be apparent day-to-day. That’s how it is with overcoming anything, I think. We relish when we can look back and feel pride in our accomplishment, now abundantly clear. But the good stuff is happening with every mini-step, every choice to incorporate self-care, every day, every moment, every bite.

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Good Food / Bad Food

New York Magazine recently featured a piece on orthorexia nervosa, the unhealthy obsession with eating only healthy or “correct” foods. The term isn’t officially recognized by the American Psychiatric Association, and some are skeptical that it has diagnostic criteria unique enough to warrant a separate designation, but I think it can be helpful in describing a specific kind of extreme attitude towards healthy eating.

beet leaves | MindBodyPlateWhile the behaviors of orthorexia may overlap with anorexia or bulimia, it’s the motivation behind the behaviors that are different. In the case of anorexia or bulimia, the underlying desire is to achieve thinness or weight loss; in the case of orthorexia, the desire is strictly (and paradoxically) to achieve optimal health.

So it doesn’t surprise me that those who are recovered from eating disorders are particularly susceptible to orthorexia. After overcoming a dangerously rigid set of unhealthy eating behaviors, it makes sense that one might get caught up in an equally rigid set of “healthy” ones.

there are no bad foods | MindBodyPlateWhether it’s in the DSM or not, I’m glad orthorexia is getting this kind of attention in the mainstream media. Ferocious commitment to dietary health is widely accepted and even encouraged in our culture, especially as we become more and more preoccupied with the “war on obesity”. As such, it’s important that we encourage mindfulness and dietary moderation with equal fervor.

The slippery slope of orthorexia is exactly why I spend ample time with my clients exploring how we improve our health & wellness and make more positive food choices without relying on the labeling of certain foods as inherently ‘bad’. As soon as we label foods good or bad, we enable the kind of extreme thinking that can lead to orthorexia.

foods are not inherently bad | MindBodyPlateWhat are your impressions of orthorexia nervosa? Should it be considered its own eating disorder? I’d love to know what you think.

Commitment Therapy / 7 Posts in 7 Days

Today brings my week-long blog writing challenge to a close. I’m feeling pretty groovy: proud that I accomplished what I set out to do and grateful for the outpouring of love and support from the MBP community.

butterfly lens flare - MindBodyPlate

When I started, I made the disclaimer that the posts “probably won’t all be home runs, but they will get written.” And yet I’m delighted to report that I truly poured my heart and soul into every single post and was proud to hit the publish button each time.

We talked about a lot this week:

A little mental health, a little physical health, and a little nutritional health: mind, body, plate.

There were days when I worried that I had nothing to write about. Then, usually over an almond milk iced latte at  my neighborhood coffee shop, I’d come up with a hook, with a little seed of a thought. And to my surprise, those seeds never failed to bloom into fully realized conversations.

Regardless of the quality of the work, what surprised me most about this process was the incredible energy I felt in response to carrying out a commitment. To say you’re going to do something and then actually decide to do it creates a kind of power inside of you, a kind of secret pride that actually makes more space for possibility, not less.

It’s addictive, in a way; perhaps commitment begets more commitment. For instance, five days ago, my husband and I began a new regimen of early morning runs. We’ve been up at 6:20 AM every single day, just making it happen. And now that this week-long challenge is finished, I’m wondering what new area of my life could use a little commitment therapy, as it were.

What area of your life could use a little commitment therapy? What’s the difference between saying you’re going to do something and then actually doing it? Let me know in the comments below. Thank you for a wonderful week!

Whatever you do, don’t try to meditate

Have you ever taken time to meditate or sit quietly in the hopes that it would help you through a stressful time, only to find yourself even more wound up afterword? What went wrong?

Or how about this: have you ever said something along the lines of, “I’d love to meditate more often, but I’m just so bad at it. I can’t get my mind to stop thinking about things!”?

buddha statue - MindBodyPlate

Well, I’ve been reading an excellent translation the Yoga Sutra of Patañjali by Chip Hartranft, and he has something to say about the process of stilling the mind that I think addresses some of these meditation issues pretty well.

Hartranft tells us that, “as we sit in stillness – meditation – we inevitably find ourselves struggling to acquire more power over some aspect of our lives. Without necessarily knowing it, we are trying to feel happy or to conquer a physical or emotional problem or to become more attractive to others or simply to do a better job of meditating than we did last time. Each of these types of effort arises from attachment to previous thoughts or actions. Even our desire to let go of all this is mired in concepts about what letting go should feel like or what it might bring us.”

In other words, it’s natural for us to get somewhat tangled when we attempt to still our mind, because the very act of trying to still the mind is – paradoxically – the opposite of stilling the mind.

So what the heck are you supposed to do when you meditate, then? I mean, if you can’t try to still the mind and the mind is going crazy, with thoughts zigzagging across your consciousness like a bad laser show, what then?

Luckily, Hartranft doesn’t leave us hanging.

He explains that “exerting the will to arrest or blockade thought… [is] unlikely to succeed though certain to perpetuate suffering.” Instead, he says, one should try “repeatedly relaxing back to the ever present object. Concentration (dhāraṇā) builds spontaneously as the yogi softens and opens to experience, not through steely attempts at mind control.”

Did you catch that? When we meditate, our aim isn’t to do anything at all; our aim is to relax into the present moment, to stay soft, and to open to experience

That means just noticing those thoughts as they ping pong inside your head – just noticing them: hm, isn’t that interesting. That means giving yourself space to be “not good” at meditating. That means accepting that there is nothing wrong with whatever you are experiencing at this very moment.  And again in this new moment. And again in this one. And again and again.

Not so intimidating after all, when you break it down like that.

So, whaddya say? You up for 5 minutes? xo

Recession-proof Self-Care

If you’ve known me for long enough, you’re aware that I have one very concrete goal in life: weekly massage. When the day comes that I can afford to hit up my local spa every Sunday for 90 minutes of essential-oil-infused, deep-tissue bliss, I’ll know I’ve really made it.

Unfortunately, now is not that time. Every few weeks I can maybe manage one of those 5 minute neck rubs at the noxious smelling nail salon, but other than that, I just don’t have it in the budget.

One of my go-to excuses when I’m stuck in a self-pitying funk is that it’s just too expensive to practice self-care. I mean, when I think of the things that make me feel relaxed and happy, my mind goes straight to massage and shopping for new clothes. Or shoes. Or anything offered at Anthropologie.

But that’s a croc! I mean, it really is just an excuse. It’s me being too lazy to come up with more affordable, more readily available self-care activities. The great news is, there are so many ideas that fit this bill. So I’ve started a running list of self-care ideas that I keep on my cellphone. That way, when start to feel dark and stormy, I have an abundance of strategies right at my fingertips to help me see the light.

Creative self-care: makeup play time!

One of my favorite ways to practice self-care is to bust out my old art bin filled with a makeup collection several years strong (a lifetime ago, I was on my way to becoming a makeup artist). I take a seat at my heirloom vanity, where I imagine my grandmother sat and looked at herself many times before, and I just… start to play. The key here is that I’m not getting ready to go anywhere – no one may see the final product, and no one needs to. It’s just me and my brushes as I start to paint, using my face as the palette. Sometimes, makeup play time turns into imaginary photo-shoot time, wherein I take a few selfies and tinker with them in a photo-editing program. When it’s time to take the makeup off, I mindfully massage coconut oil into my skin (it’s a great makeup remover), and then wipe it all away with a warm washcloth, moving gently over my face and décolletage with a great deal of care.

So that’s my makeup play time idea. True, it’s a little image-centric, so it might not work for all people or all moods; but the point is, it’s totally free. You don’t even have to leave the house!

I have a client who told me that nothing feels as good as changing the sheets on her bed. “It takes a little bit of effort,” she explained, “but when it’s done, and I snuggle into those crisp, clean, new sheets…” She paused. “I feel like I’m in heaven.” This absolutely blew me away. What a totally creative idea for self-care! And most of us think of changing our bed sheets as a chore. I left that session realizing that my options for creative self-care were truly infinite.

Other affordable self-care ideas include:

  • Create a friendship pyramid. Though I’m fairly certain this idea originated as a social skills worksheet for the special ed classroom, I think it’s a fab idea for us all. Grab some paper and a pencil and start filing in your friendship pyramid as a reminder that you are surrounded and supported by loved ones, friends, family, and community.
  • Make some music. Pick up that dusty guitar, plug in the ol’ keyboard, grab the nearest kazoo or even a red solo cup, and start making noise. The key here is that there are no expectations. Open your mouth and see what comes out! Express yo-self.
  • Give yourself a non-manicure. Listen to some soothing tunes while you remove any chipped polish, clip, file, and buff your nails. Next, add a few drops of essential oil to a big bowl of warm water and soak your hands for a few minutes – dare to get pruny. Afterwards, slowly and methodically massage an oil of your choice into your fingertips and cuticle beds. Take your time with this. Hell, massage all the knuckles as well. You can do this anywhere, and it feels amazing. When you’re all done, wipe away the oil with a warm washcloth and thank your hands for all of the amazing work they do.
  • Pick up an affordable hobby. One that has nothing to do with your job or any other pursuit that makes you feel stressed. Something that’s yours alone. Years ago, before I started this blog, I began tinkering with photo-editing programs and became somewhat of a graphic design enthusiast. It felt totally enriching and really helped me to zen-out. Now, of course, that passion has become a part of what I do here at MindBodyPlate, so on to something new… perhaps I’ll teach myself to knit!
  • Fall down the inspirational quote rabbit hole. Go ahead and Google the term inspirational quote. Oh, just do it. Click on something – anything – and start reading. Found one that you really like? Copy the name of whoever said it, and next, do a Google search for all of their quotes! You can go on and on like this. As long as you watch your posture and jaw tension while you’re parked in front of the computer screen, this free activity can be absolutely invigorating and uplifting.
  • Massage your face. The first time I pressed my fingertips into my cheeks and jaw line, it was a revelation. The human face has at least 42 different muscles, and they get used all day long! For most of us, facial tension is at an all-time high, and a little bit of love up there can go a long way. There are a multitude of tips and how-tos for facial self-massage online, but you needn’t even look at them. Just wash your hands and start poking around. What feels good? What doesn’t? What feels not-so-good but it’s probably just because of major tension so you should keep going anyway? Play with different strokes, different rhythms, using different parts of the hand. Use oil or don’t. Whatever anxiety you may have about clogging your pores will be vastly overshadowed by how amazing you feel afterward. I’m telling you – don’t hesitate. Try it today!

Do you have any recession-proof ideas for self-care? Let me know what works for you. Let’s start a virtual database of easy self-care ideas!

MBP Daily Three: When Your Lucky Underpants Don’t Help

MBP3 IS A SERIES DEDICATED TO WALKING THE WALK. WHAT ARE 3 THINGS YOU’VE DONE TODAY TO NOURISH YOUR MIND, YOUR BODY, & YOUR PLATE?
calvin and hobbes lucky rocket ship underpants

From Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson

Woof. Some days, you’re just so, totally down in the dumps. I knew a girl who called it “going to her dark place.” Luckily, the MBP Daily Three is a tool you can use to pave the way toward a better tomorrow, no matter how you feel today. It’s easy to remember: just check off one thing you’ve done today to nourish your mental health, your physical health, and your nutritional health (mind, body, and plate). The MBP3 might not turn your whole day around, but a little bit of self-care today may do a great deal of good in the long run.

Body: My handsome, bearded husband took the day off for a doctor appointment. Though he practically had to drag me out of the house, we ended up going for a short run through the neighborhood together. My brain was doing this weird thing where I thought if I couldn’t go run a 10k, then I shouldn’t run at all (being a perfectionist is really special sometimes). In the end, I just had to strong arm my way through that resistance and get out there. And don’t think I forget for one second how lucky I am to have a partner who can kindly nudge me in the right direction when I’m getting in my own way.

Photograph by Nicole Franzen for Gardenista

Photograph by Nicole Franzen for Gardenista

Mind: Our new neighborhood in Brooklyn is home to this cool little business called Sycamore Bar & Flower Shop. It’s, well… a bar attached to a flower shop. They’ve got all kinds of beautiful moss and ivy creations hanging in glass terrariums in the windows, along with gorgeous and unique flowers littering the mason-jar-filled space. After our run, we stepped inside just to have a look around. There was something about taking in the delicate beauty of some of those little succulents and air plants that demanded mindfulness. And practicing mindfulness helped lift my mood. Maybe we just ducked into a little bar and flower shop, but in some way it felt like a tiny trip to some sort of Midsummer Night’s fairyland, and it shook up my day in just the right way. It’s interesting how the smallest things can affect one’s perspective.

Plate: Finally, we stopped at the health food store, and I pulled up a recipe for red lentil coconut soup that I’ve been eyeing on Pinterest for a while. I took my time perusing the store, an enjoyable pastime for me in itself, and gathered the ingredients to make the dish. The truth is, I may not even make it tonight; I may just not have it in me. But I’ll be able to make it tomorrow. And somehow, just knowing that I have all of the ingredients to make such a rich and healthy meal makes me feel more at ease.  No matter what happens, I know I have some rewarding nourishment coming my way.

Will you tackle your MBP Daily Three even when it seems like a futile undertaking? Who are the people in your life you can turn to for a gentle nudge in the right direction? Let me know in the comments below, and have a lucky rocketship underpants kind of day.

I Wear Purple

I wear purple because

February draws to a close this evening, and with it, Eating Disorder Awareness Month. If you’re looking for some inspiration, head on over to the facebook page for The Purple Project, a month-long event beautifully orchestrated by an organization called Where I Stand. All month, people from all over the world have been submitting pictures of themselves wearing purple, standing up for eating disorder awareness, recovery, and prevention. The whole project has been quite moving, and I’d like to congratulate Where I Stand for such a successful endeavor!

What Is Yoga?

Well, in the midst of finding and preparing to move into a new apartment, I have certainly neglected to keep up with my blogging. What a wonderful lesson for me to ponder at a later time, when I’m not going coo coo bananas out of my mind with stress. In the meantime, I’ve decided to politely decline my ego’s offer to beat myself up mercilessly for not being committed / hardworking / passionate / professional / [fill-in-the-blank] enough. No thank you, Ego! I’ll do better next time, and that’s all I can do. But thank you for your concern.

This weekend is a bit crowded. In the next four days, I:

  • celebrate my 4th wedding anniversary
  • turn 30
  • graduate from my 200 hour yoga teacher training
  • pack up my whole apartment
  • and move from Queens to Brooklyn.

And let’s not forget that I’m knee-deep in season 2 of House of Cards, which needs to be squeezed in here and there, obviously. It’ll all get done, I just have to take it one breath at a time.

Source: Jack Affleck, Affleck Photos

Source: Jack Affleck, Affleck Photos

I’m feeling especially proud as I enter into this last weekend of yoga teacher training, and I thought I’d share some thoughts about it today. Below are two short essays, both entitled What Is Yoga?, that I wrote over the course of my training. The first was written just as I embarked on the program, nearly five months ago:

My earliest understanding of yoga was that it involved a system of physical postures which, when practiced regularly, were shown to benefit both the mind and the body. In other words, I thought yoga was all about asana.

A few years back, when I began practicing regularly, my conception of yoga shifted to include a subtle spiritual practice involving improved communion – or union – between mind and body.

By the grace of my teachers, I’ve come to see yoga as an all-inclusive life philosophy, a spiritual and physical practice, a way of approaching life that seeks to quiet, still, or master the fluctuations and compulsions of the mind.

 The beauty of this definition is that it includes my former understandings of what yoga is and then expands upon them. Yes, yoga is about postures (asana) and control of breath (pranayama), but it is also about universal codes of behavior (yama), self-purification by discipline (niyama), the conquering of sense-driven conditioning (pratyahara), and varying levels of concentration, meditation, and consciousness (dharana, dhyana, and samadhi).

 My early impression that yoga strengthens the mind-body connection is also reflected throughout the canon of yogic learning. For instance, the concept of ahimsa, or non-violence, applies to the self as well as to others. Therefore, yoga teaches us to avoid harshly criticizing our bodies and to work toward accepting the truth (satya) of our physical form with loving acceptance. Dedication to asana under the influence of aparigraha (non-possessiveness) and santosa (non-comparing) can help us to take pride in our physical abilities without judging or identifying with them. In other words, it encourages self-worth without the trappings of pride. It cultivates a more harmonious relationship with The Self – body and mind.

These revelations about yoga have cracked my world wide open and created so much room for new study and growth (svadhyaya). I’m sure my definition of yoga will continue to evolve, but I’m grateful for the understanding I have now.

The next essay is something I scribbled down today, and though it’s vulnerable, messy, and impulsively written, I wanted so deeply to share it with you here.

When last I wrote a short essay entitled What Is Yoga? I spent a great deal of time integrating all the fancy new Sanskrit words I was learning and crafting calculated paragraphs to please my teachers. The whole thing was rather intellectualized, rather academic… rather hollow.

And so this time around, I’ll be opening no reference books, nor reviewing my notes to make sure what I’m saying matches up with past lectures, nor even spending much time re-reading and editing this final product. This one comes from the heart.

So what is yoga? Yoga is an age-old life philosophy, the practice of which enables us to yoke – to rejoin, unite, and unify – our individual selves with the greater whole. This means different things to different people. For some, yoga enables them to feel closer to the Source, the Greater Intelligence, God. For others, yoga may help to bridge a painful and hard-to-pin-down gap between mind and body, or between the mind-body vehicle and an enduring sense of self, sat-chit-ananda, being-consciousness-bliss.

What I know in my bones is that yoga is more than asana. Yoga is a soft pillow that comes up to meet you wherever you are and helps to carry you that last impossible mile. Yoga is medicine for mind and body. Yoga provides the guard rails on this confusing, emotional, and wild ride called life. Yoga is introspection, pratyahara, and svadyaya, but it is also community, and selfless sharing, and exuberant bhakti! Yoga is everything. And I’m so grateful that I can continue to journey into its depths.

Interesting to read them side-by-side, yes? Does any of it ring true to you? Or have my musings made it all seem more muddled and confusing than ever? What is yoga to you? Please let me know in the comments below.

Hope y’all have a fabulous weekend. The next time you hear from me, I’ll be a Brooklynite! xo

MBP Daily Three: Baby It’s Cold Outside

MBP3 IS A SERIES DEDICATED TO WALKING THE WALK. WHAT ARE 3 THINGS YOU’VE DONE TODAY TO NOURISH YOUR MIND, YOUR BODY, & YOUR PLATE?

snowy nyc cab

Body: Despite icy New York City streets and 10 degree weather, I managed to tackle two yoga classes yesterday. The first, my usual Thursday morning vinyasa class, is one of the most challenging classes I take all week. When I started attending well over a year ago, I used to joke with my husband that “it wasn’t a Thursday morning if I didn’t fall on my face!” Well, I have to say, I’m pretty proud that I now have the stamina not only to protect my pout, but to go back for more. Mind you, my second class was a restorative one, but still… I’m happy that I didn’t shy away from added activity, especially when this wintry weather makes it so difficult to stay outgoing and uplifted.

Mind: Speaking of staying uplifted, I made the executive decision not to spend my free day cooped up home alone re-watching old episodes of Law and Order SVU (not that there’s anything wrong with that). Instead, I decided to stay cooped up in Brooklyn, along with my dear friend and her beautiful new baby girl. Often when I’m exhausted, my natural tendency is to isolate myself, which seems right in the moment but leaves me feeling a bit depressed in the long term. Sometimes I have to push myself to be more social even if it’s not my first instinct, because I know in the end it will leave me feeling more stimulated, uplifted, and inspired. Plus, I had the added benefit of knowing I brightened someone else’s day! After all, it’s not easy to be a new mom stuck at home in the dead of winter.

mother and baby

Plate: The bountiful salad I had for lunch filled me so substantially that I was able to eat a relatively light dinner (1/3 c baked butternut squash, a handful of carrots, and 3 Tbsp hummus) and feel completely satisfied. Making breakfast or lunch your biggest meal of the day is not always easy, especially in our siesta-less American culture. But it is important: not only do our bodies utilize caloric energy most efficiently before 3 PM, but we also tend to sleep better when we’re not overly stuffed. In my mind, these are reasons enough to start “front-loading” your day.

An early 17th century family supper. Image via www.historiccookingschool.com

An early 17th century family supper. Image via http://www.historiccookingschool.com

Here’s a fun fact: the word supper comes from the word for soup, because from the Middle Ages until the 18th century, the last meal of the day was typically a light snack, like a bowl of soup, perhaps sopped up with bread. The middle meal was traditionally the largest and main meal of the day and was called… wait for it… dinner!

Yesterday turned out to be rich and rewarding despite freezing weather, but today is a new day calling for a new MBP Daily Three. What will you do today to nourish your mind, your body, and your plate?

MBP Daily Three

MBP3 is a series dedicated to walking the walk. What are 3 things you’ve done today to nourish your mind, your body, & your plate?

MBP Daily Three

Welcome to the inaugural post for MindBodyPlate’s new weekly series: the MBP Daily Three! The MBP Daily Three strategy is simple: do at least one thing every day to nourish your mental health, physical health, and nutritional health. I’ll be using these posts as way to ensure that I’m not just talking the talk (blogging the blog?), but also walking the walk.

Once a week I’ll let you in on an example of my attempts to integrate the MBP Daily Three, shedding light on my successes, challenges, and the surprising interplay between these three aspects of health. I hope to inspire you to do the same for yourself and to share your creative approaches in the comment sections below each post. Let’s start a revolution of self-care!

MBP Daily Three

Thursday, September 5th, 2013

Body: I started the day off with my favorite Thursday morning yoga class. What I love about Marko’s 90 minute Vinyasa flow is that I’m guaranteed an intense workout, but he also incorporates yoga philosophy, stories from the Bhagavad Gita, and chanting accompanied by his beautiful harmonium. I always leave feeling exhausted yet uplifted. Already, we’re seeing that one act (yoga, for instance) can benefit more than one aspect of the MBP Daily Three (in this case, body AND mind).

Plate: For lunch, I was inspired by one of my favorite blogs, Oh She Glows, to create my own ultimate vegan sandwich. My version was unique to what I had around the house, and I decided to do something special for my body by making my own hummus. Oftentimes, store bought hummus contains preservatives or oils that don’t really jive with me. When you make it at home, you know just exactly what went into it – and it’s super easy!

Pickled Jalapeno Hummus

Pickled Jalapeño Hummus

Vegan / Gluten Free / Soy Free

For my homemade hummus, I just tossed the following into my Vitamix:

    • 1 can garbanzo beans
    • 1/4 c tahini
    • 1/4 c – 3/4 c water*
    • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
    • 15 pieces of pickled jalapeño**
    • Juice of 1 small lemon
    • salt and pepper to taste

*I used 3/4 c water so it would blend smoothly in my Vitamix, which made it pretty thin. I’d go with less water if you’re making it in your food processor and/or you want it on the thick side. Either way, it’s delicious.

**You could use anything here in place of the pickled jalapeños. Experiment with whatever flavors float your boat: roasted garlic, chives, sun-dried tomatoes, kalamata olives, artichoke hearts, or roasted red peppers…

Mind: By 11 PM my head was still buzzing, so I set my iPhone Insight Timer for 15 minutes and sat down for a formal meditation practice. Afterward, I decided to refrain from checking my email or Facebook before bed. It helped me center down and set me up for a great night of sleep.

What do you think – are you up for the MBP Daily Three challenge? Let me know in the comments below!