When I was growing up, my mother would make homemade chocolate chip cookies just about every single weekend.
And each time, I would easily eat a dozen in a day. She just used the Toll House recipe on the bag–there were no secret ingredients–but to me, there is no treat more tempting.
The most satisfying of these cookie experiences took place on rainy afternoons when my sister and I would sprawl out on the sofa to watch a new release on HBO or unwrap a video just purchased from the Navy Exchange.
To this day, I can’t turn down a homemade chocolate chip cookie. They don’t just satisfy a craving; they feed my soul.
Many of us have these foods that nourish us on more than just a physical level.
A good friend of mine finds comfort in a bowl of mashed potatoes, relished in front of a BBC or Masterpiece Theater period piece.
For others, solace is found in a deep dish of cheesy baked ziti, chicken pot pie, or apple crumble.
Not surprisingly, these deep-seated emotional connections with food aren’t so great for the waistline.
And, it’s no shocker that diets based solely on calorie or carb counts aren’t successful in the long run.
It’s one thing for the body to feel deprived, but the soul? That’s unacceptable.
Noting that most of us are unconscious of the things eating away at us, Cameron confirms that it’s common for us to console ourselves with food.
So instead of deprivation for the sake of weight loss, Cameron suggests that we use freestyle writing to sort through things that are eating at us–and that we are trying to suppress by eating.
Time and again, Cameron witnessed first-hand how students in her Artist’s Way courses dropped weight effortlessly. she concludes that there are seven tools that make this possible, three of which include:
- Morning Pages. The cornerstone of The Artist’s Way program, these three pages of freestyle writing are executed immediately upon waking each morning.
- Deceptively simple, they help writers to sort through all the things that we don’t realize are weighing us down.
- Journal. Though most dieters have heard of food journaling, Cameron urges writers not just to record food ingested, but to write as soon as the urge to eat beckons.
- In doing so, we learn what is driving us to eat and begin to explore other ways of coping with those emotions.
- Culinary Artist Dates.
- This solo expedition means forcing ourselves out of routine and is intended to nurture the soul while allowing us to explore new foods or new ways of prepping foods.
- The only caveat is that our choices should support our weight loss goals – but with so many new cuisines and techniques to try, this isn’t a challenge at all.
It seems to me that not enough is written about the impact of our mental well-being on the health of our bodies.
Instead, we dive head first into a fad diet: low cal, low carb, no carb, paleo, gluten-free… but if chocolate chip cookies make you feel loved, none of these diets are going to prevent you from eating them.
Our only choice is to pour out our feelings onto the page and try to understand why we are looking to Mrs. Fields for a soul connection.