How do you practice sense-restraint as a lay Buddhist?

One of the aims of sense restraint is to gain control over your mind's being enslaved to pleasure. You investigate the nature of 'being' without expending all of your energy on fulfilling desire. What's it like to exist when I'm not spending all my thought, speech, and action in pursuit of fulfilling sense desires? What does that feel like? You're starting to find one aspect of that out right now as you're skipping dinner.

Ticking off checkboxes in our routines could be considered fulfilling desires. Sure, it doesn't seem like it's that fulfilling when we do our routines, but you've found out how uncomfortable it is when we don't do them.

One view here might be that the discomfort is exactly the thing to be investigated. Trying to mitigate discomfort in this case is only further playing into sense indulgence. One view might be that the point is to fully experience and investigate that discomfort until you understand it and are no longer affected by it. You'll still notice the discomfort, but after a while the hope might be that it doesn't drive your thoughts/speech/actions.

Just some thoughts.

/r/Buddhism Thread