Remember: A Cookie Can’t Hug You!

Cold, overcast days bring back comforting memories of baking cookies or icing a cake.  That’s one reason why when it’s cold, I love to bake, do you?

It’s great to reminisce, isn’t it? But let’s face it, sometimes a cookie isn’t ‘just a cookie’.  Sometimes cookies represent warm memories of childhood, feelings of comfort, family closeness and fun –  all of which time has passed by. Today we live in a stressed-out world where work pressures pursue us, children nag us, time constrains us and oh, how we long to be once again, in that sweet innocent bubble called childhood. Unconsciously you reach for that gooey, soft peanut butter cookie and are magically transported back to an age of guiltless pleasure.

Really??? Is that true?!  As we age we tend to build on memory, making childhood recollections greater than they actually were. We conveniently forget the fights with our family, being bullied by the school terror or that awkward puberty growth spurt, right?  Sometimes stuffing painful memories deep into our subconscious is protection. Perhaps even today you find yourself routinely turning to candy, ice cream or anything sweet to tranquillize that pain, discouragement or fear inside you. It’s called ‘unconscious’ eating.

Unconscious eating pacifies our mood. It provides soothing perceptions of security within our subconscious. Food releases chemicals that quiets our anxiety. It wraps completely around us, providing the same protective shelter as a mother’s arms when we’re too big to sit in her lap anymore.  It’s a comfort during long weekends when your husband is away on yet another business trip. It calms   fear while waiting for a teenager to return on an icy evening.

First, recognize how you feel at the time. Then self-analyse, creating awareness and developing strategies that practice positive reactions.

It’s important to understand that you control your feelings, feelings shouldn’t control you! Don’t apologize – they are after-all, your feelings and everyone should be entitled to feelings. If you suppress them, they will be released in unconscious ways; anger, depression, sarcasm, etc.  Recognize and overcome them. You have inner power – seize it!

1 John 4:4, “You dear children are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.”

During moments like this, what do you find yourself craving?  Craving crunchy? Potato chips, pretzels or nuts, indicates suppressed anger. Or lonely? Chocolate seduces you. Containing Phenylethylamine, it’s the same chemical emitted when you’re in love. Sad? Creamy foods such as ice cream or mac & cheese are comfort foods.

Perhaps you’re not even hungry. Ever go from cupboard to pantry to fridge, looking for something and not finding what you’re really hungry for? Don’t know, can’t decide? Most likely, you are craving water.  Your brain is saying it needs water, which is found in all foods. So before you give in to temptation, try drinking a glass of water first and waiting about fifteen minutes.  Usually the craving will pass.

Bored? Read a great mystery novel, watch an adventure or chick-flick, create a blog, take a walk, give yourself a facial, a bubble bath, go though old photo albums or begin writing your memoirs.

Lonely?  Go to a public place like a library, antique mall, craft fair, department store or for a downtown walk. Exercise and fresh air release endorphins that provide feelings of goodwill.

Sad, feeling sorry for yourself?  Volunteer at a local shelter, food bank, pregnancy center or hospital and count your blessings while cheering others.

You can overcome this. God cares, so you’re in great company:  Psalm 34:18, “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”

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16 thoughts on “Remember: A Cookie Can’t Hug You!

  1. You just had to pick on the cookies!!!! I think this is the hardest part about living a healthier lifestyle…learning why we want to drown out feelings with food. Some days it is hard to muster the self-control or even the desire to have self-control…I have found that taking a walk helps and even better if the sun is out.

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  2. hahaha, so sorry – I understand what you’re feeling because cookies are the ‘perfect ‘ food, fat, sugar and salt! The cookies themselves aren’t wrong so enjoy one every once in a while, but man . . . when that cookie starts to control you, then it becomes an idol and that’s placing it before our Lord, hurting our Creator’s feelings. Sometimes I use the ‘out of sight, out of mind’ practice, freezing some and only take out a specific amount at a time.

    Thanks so much for commenting, appreciate it. God won’t take away your cookies, 🙂

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      • oooo, I hope you mean that in a good way because I never feel like I need to express “tough love” with you! You’re ‘practically perfect in every way’ and one of my favorite followers! 🙂

        Seriously, remember when God said, “Let’s make man in our image?” Well I believe the attributes we have are many of God’s attributes, except we aren’t perfect. As a parent I personally know how painful it is to speak the truth in love but be turned away, tuned out or even abandoned when we only want what’s best for our children? Remember how painful that is? It hurts us deeply. God only wants what’s best for us but gives us the liberty to choose. The older I get the more I desire to choose God’s direction for my life despite the cost. We aren’t perfect, just forgiven. Thanks for commenting dear friend.

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  3. Hey Foodie, thanks for commenting! Cute comment! Love to hear from you! If you have any less fattening, sugary recipes, please add a link because I always enjoy your recipes and know my readers would appreciate your fantastic posts! 🙂

    Readers, see above though. ANYTHING that we place above our Lord, becomes a controlling idol and displeases God. He knew even before we did that too much fat, sugar and salt upsets our biochemistry and hurts our earthy temple.

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  4. Thank you Brianna, being in Arizona we hardly see an overcast day but we have several coming up. I’m very susceptible to weather cahnges and definitely am a “sunny” personality. At that time I eat a lot of garlic and other foods that overcome the “blues”. I’ll have to specifically write about foods that improve our moods this week and give you the credit!

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  5. Very encouraging! It amazes me how God knows what we need to hear at just the right moments! I really needed to be reminded of this and your suggestions really do work and it’s always good to let those feelings out. As it is said, “Pray without ceasing.” Also, t’s always good to be reminded that God loves us, even if at times we have a hard time loving ourselves or going through a lot of stress.

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    • Isn’t it wonderful how God doesn’t expect perfection from us, only obedience? In our humanity however, we expect it from ourselves, while others compare God to their own parents whom they felt expected perfection from their children or else professed disppointment. But God doesn’t have an ‘all or nothing policy’ otherwise no one would be good enough. Romans 3:10. I appreciate your comment!

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      • It sure is! Exactly! If we were “perfect” then we’d be walking robots and never learn anything in life. I think that’s why God accepts us as who we are — even warts and all. During stressful times, sometimes we lose sight of this. And when we do, He always seems to remind us in some way. 🙂

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