FOOD ADDICTION: Why the term ‘Comfort Food’ is really a justification for self-destructive behaviors

I’ve recently taken in some new data, consistent with older scholarly research, client data, self-healing and intuitive understanding, that simply reminded me just how much people struggle with food!

Aside from the convenience of low-quality, HIGHLY processed, prepackaged and microwaved (which is NO LONGER molecularly food once is cooked or warmed in the microwave, but that is an entirely separate rant) food choices the mainstream so often use in their DAILY life, it is the addiction to EMOTIONS and the internal JUSTIFICATIONS that keep people eating to soothe themselves.

Research after research study of the brain and the psyche has revealed that FOOD does not and cannot ‘make’ you feel better.  There is no chemistry.  No instant neuroemdocrinal reaction

Therefore, when certain foods are REMOVED from your daily nutrition plan (AKA a DIET for those who need a ‘quick fix’ to a lifestyle of chronic poor nutritional behaviors/choices), there is little to no possibility that one will respond with anegative emotions

So WHY then do so many individuals link their emotional well-being and happiness to FOOD?

The answer:  They are emotional addicts.

A ‘comfort food’ is basically any food, often from childhood but can also be from specific events or locations or experiences, that elicits a false sense of happiness or calming sensation within our moods. When we are emotionally ‘triggered’ (a word I use to show that we are in need of some deep healing and release of the past), we sprint to certain FOODS to FEEL BETTER.

comversely, there is a portion of the population who actually subconsciously boycott eating altogether when they hit specific emotional triggers, which is often more about control

The reality is that we are actually AVOIDING the need to heal our own deep emotional issues, expectations and distracting ourselves, even diverting these ‘feels’ through unhealthy practices.

This is the SAME behavior you see in alcoholics (people who drink alcoholic beverages to soothe or avoid emotions such as anxiety or a bad day), drug users, prescription pain medicine abusers and even gamblers, chronic shoppers and pornography addicts!

Your addiction, however, is two-fold:  EMOTIONS and FOOD

Many times, when the truly unaware and uneducated individuals are looking to ‘lose weight’, they often get sucked into a vortex of MARKETING ploys designed to take your money based on FALSE claims and promises.

Overweight individuals who struggle with emotional issues and have somehow attached their own self-soothing behaviors to consumption are easy targets.  They are lacking in varying degrees of self-worth, value and care, therefore they become an easy target for the industry.

Rant: if you actually PAY for a ‘diet’, powder or plan that guarantees your success or your money back but does NOT take into consideration YOUR age, lifestyle, weight, travel style, job, sleep patterns, activity, stressors and everything else that makes you YOU, you’ve been SUCKERED!

Diet plans that restrict an individual to low calories (1200-1600 per day), low activity, zero tolerance of any raw/clean food item or groups, small portions or limit one’s consumption of actual chewable foods for an extended time frame often create a nutritional depletion of the body and brain!

It is a personal platform for me from which to preach, however, I do not advocate nor to I jump on ANY trendy or latest/greatest diet plan, motion, potion or lotion! Why? Because they are all marketing scams designed to steal your money by capitalizing on your weakness towards self.

So then….the modern industry provides a fix to the very toxic side effect of nutrient depletion by dumping expensive ‘supplements’ down their throats, creating a greater issue with addiction!

Just imagine… consume some magical ‘B vitamin’ drops to offset starving your body of natural whole B vitamin rich foods but then, you are unable to get anymore.  You FREAK out! At least most folks do.  Swap out any supplement, enhancer or pre-workout blend for said B vitamin addiction and you have issues

My job? To UNDO this toxic mental process of addictive behaviors by reminding ALL individuals they are in control of their emotions, behaviors and choices 100% and there are ZERO magical fixes.

Look at the fitness industry subgroup of bodybuilding or fitness competitions.  In spite of my personal opinion and the countless stories of how women’s bodies have completely boycotted them after they tortured them with these intense practices, I am FULLY AWARE these individuals are disproportionately using anabolic steroids to achieve the results they do. Not only do they take a pantry full of supplementation/juicing and practice intense rituals of borderline starvation, they become addicted to these practices!

And the physical, emotional and long-term side-effects and health impacts!!!!

Humans are hard wired in the subconscious mind to ACT and REACT to certain situations, without thinking about it or even being aware of it.

When ‘A’ happens, they respond with ‘B’!

Sometimes they have every superficial intention to change their reactions, but then when ‘A’ hits, they eventually go to ‘B’.

Because this is the human mind at work, the ONLY way to alter one’s addiction is to create NEW healthy responses (so as not to swap one addiction like smoking for another like eating) and behaviors, therefore rewiring our subconscious mind!

Individuals who have an addiction to emotions are often easily stressed out or triggered. Their ‘expectations’ of how others ‘should’ be are high and it creates a classic case of judgement.  Expectations of how the kitchen ‘should’ be maintained, how family members ‘should’ act, even how young adults ‘should’ behave.

The stressed out individual will OFTEN justify their expectations of others and the situation, almost in a victim mindset. Once the ‘family’ doesn’t behave how they expect, the ‘boss’ doesn’t give them what they expect, the IRS doesn’t give what they expect, the ‘bank account’ doesn’t possess what they expect, they become SAD or DEPRESSED, or ANGRY, or ANXIOUS and turn to their justifications, excuses and addictions, often without thinking.

This is why a smoker struggles to quit. Not only is the CHEMICAL TOXIN in cigarettes and other tobacco products physically addictive, but there is a strong psychological component set well. They subconsciously link grabbing the cigarette to a ceremonial act of ‘de-stressing’.  Their brain must be rewired.

Now, looking deeper into their pattern, how does one become aware of it or even change it?

Food addictions, especially due to the very likely attachment to the past, create a uniquely complex problem.  Food is generally accepted as appropriate and even encouraged as a fix for emotional responses.  Parents bake cookies to help their kiddos FEEL better.  Depressed individuals turn to trigger foods like chips, cookies, donuts and even macaroni and cheese.  Nostalgic or melancholy connections launch individuals down a path of eating specific candy or foods because ‘grandma’ use to make this.

I am not saying that a small portion of Mac-n-cheese doesn’t have its place ON OCCASION.  However, people who are overweight or obese tend to use food to comfort their emotions because it is ‘food’, and generally accepted.

Combine the mental challenges of someone trying to LOSE weight due to an entire lifestyle of poor eating and nutritional self-sacrifice, who is using a ‘restrictive’ diet plan, who is addicted (unknowingly) to emotions, who has expectations of others (family, spouses, careers, finances, life) and who has a lot of unhealed emotional turmoil with a strong attachment to emotional eating (comfort foods), and you hold in your presence a collapsing human structure!

The most important way to HEAL this is to remember that comfort foods and emotional eating patterns are NOT what is making you FEEL better, but rather, a distraction or diversion from what you ARE TRULY FEELING.

You must align with your true FEELS, albeit frustration, sadness, unhealed past trauma or disappointment. Remember, how you FEEL (ie….stressed out because of family) is your OWN creation!

Feel the sadness and ask where does this come from? Am I sad because I am alone? Am I alone because I’m sad, negative, angry or have high expectations of others? Is this emotion really my own problem? How can I change this emotion by going inside of my own heart and providing myself with exactly what I NEED whether it is space, safety or just a sense of acceptance?

The answer will NOT be through addictive patterning.

Change your ‘go to’ responses by NOT using food or sugar (which elicits the same brain response as cocaine and heroin)! It’s not easy, but it is healthy and life-changing.

Release unconscious eating patterns or mindless picking at foods when done eating. Make sure every single bite you take has nourishment value AND is done out of HUNGER! This includes opening a package of crackers or eating the chips because they are on the table!

Stop linking food to pleasure, especially exclusively. It is not. Food is for nourishment. Find healthy hobbies to bring us happiness. When people attach to food to please themselves, they become emotionally depressed when they stop consuming it because THEY have created no other sources of happiness in their own lives!

We are responsible for our own happy!

People who emotionally eat are often haters of their own body. They speak of themselves in terms of being not good enough, or even self-hate. If they allow others to SHAME or humiliate them by speaking about certain body parts in negative ways, they contribute to the self-loathing emotional addiction.

We create our own existence, our own illnesses, our own long-term negative emotions and all of the illness and fallout we endure subsequently. No amount of mom’s Mac-n-cheese will ever restore that which you allow to grow like a cancer within the heart.

Negative emotional triggers such as frustration, sadness, anxiety, depression, anger, rage, loneliness, control, righteousness, sarchasm, victimization (poor me), attachment, irritation, low self-esteem, sudden mood alterations, self-loathing and self-deprivation are all linked to very specific areas within your soul, whether present, childhood or even past-life karma, in need of HEALING.

Heal yourself.



Being POSITIVE in a NEGATIVE Environment

We all know them…you recognize them quickly in the way they interact with those closest to them, as if they possess some stature or echelon level over them.   You will know them because they interact with those they are NOT close to in a very different light; a performance or a stage ACT.  They seem well put together and show up to events, classes, groups, conversations and other human interactions with a sense of courage, bravery and even an air of self-importance when all the while, they are known and viewed very differently by those closest to them.

They tell you what you are doing is WRONG or tell you how you SHOULD do something. They won’t listen to your stories, your feelings or your side.  The mood of the day revolves around how they FEEL…..anywhere from eggshells, to conflict or elation, erratic spending and even sudden plans that may or may not involve you.  Their words are harsh and their tone loud.  Their needs are selfish…its all about them.  They tell you how you should load a dishwasher, mow the yard, organize a pantry, do laundry, make a bed, use a hammer, how to speak on the phone to someone, what to say to someone.  They will scold adults for not responding how they THOUGHT it should have been.  They will eradicate themselves from situations of importance without cause or even notice.  They keep some areas of their world OBSESSIVELY organized (maybe a desk, maybe a closet, a dishwasher or even the process of laundry).  EVERYTHING in their environment must FIT in their expectations of what they THINK is RIGHT, and even if they speak momentarily that they adapt, when it doesn’t fit, they HAVE A FIT.

Negative people are everywhere.  Sure, there are different reasons why an individual might be temporarily negative, but the one’s who work very hard to remove the shine of the positive are the targets for today’s understanding.

As it is quoted

“Some people try to be tall by cutting off the heads of others”

This doesn’t mean that growth and ascension at the sacrifice of certain relationships isn’t appropriate…quite the contrary.

What it means is those who ACTIVELY and PATTERNISTICALY utilize or tap into negative energies to make themselves appear a way that they are not, even through teasing and humiliating with humor, arguing or being combative.

Negative and controlling people LOVE to push buttons to expose another’s weakness or vulnerability…not to actually help or encourage growth, but to put a glowing spotlight on YOU directly as an individual and create a need to become defensive or explain out their side.

This is very different than someone who FEELS convicted by the words or actions of another and argues to defend their toxic or damaging lifestyle, behaviors and actions.

Negative people like to “exploit” the weaknesses in others, using “control” as a means to be “right”.  They are typically moody, depressed, angry, and even anxious about the world and everything around them.  Some often act like VICTIMS, playing the “poor me” card through social media drama, drawing attention to their multiple woes and how NO ONE EVER gives them credit or helps them.  They pretend that they are indispensable and can “survive” without the help of others or that their views are the only views.

Negative people try to CONTROL others, because it gives them a sense of power and offsets their own core struggle:  FEAR.

Why do people become CONTROLLING and NEGATIVE?

There are a few reasons why.

  1. Somewhere in their past, they LOST control of a critical part of their existence (rape, sexual assault, physical abuse, abusive relationship, bankruptcy, hurricane).  Their own control over their life was taken, whether momentarily or over the course of time, and they have not LEARNED how to heal.
  2. They have a superiority issue, or an internal NEED to FEEL SUPERIOR to others. This can be a personality issue or caused by something simple like a guardian using dominance and authoritative parenting tactics.
  3. Oppositional and stubbornness can cause a person to possess a strong need to CONTROL, especially in UNDERSTANDING another’s perspective, opinion and even another’s feelings.
  4. FEAR of being abandoned, which is often stemmed from a childhood upbringing of abuse. When children (especially boys) are beaten by their own parents, slapped around, verbally abused, called names like stupid or told they will not amount to anything, they develop issues with loving themselves.  The instinctual way to reassert themselves is by controlling others.
  5. To prove themselves! Their self-esteem and confidence are so low.

The WEAK control for STRENGTH

The INSECURE control for SAFETY

The UNWORTHY control for VALUE

So how do we deal with controlling and negative people?  Aye…the struggle is exposed!

Customers, clients, encounters/interactions with waitstaff, checkers, drive-through window staff, neighbors, romantic partners, spouses and even friends and family…..there are those individuals who are seen in every circle as being “negative”, even controlling over everything and everyone in their environment.

Aside from keeping you COOL (just breathe), distancing yourself from them if possible (physically or emotionally), and reminding yourself to NOT TAKE IT PERSONALLY, there are some highly effective ways to deal with those individuals who are often negative and controlling.

  1. KEEP YOUR FOCUS on yourself, your own thoughts, words and expressions. Negative people are negative about everyone.  Some even feel safety in “expressing” their true negativity to those who are closest because it is their true vulnerability.
  2. UNDERSTAND that FEAR is the root of their negativity, their control, their criticism, their projecting and their contempt. YOU CANNOT CHANGE A NEGATIVE PERSON’S MINDSET – SO DON’T TRY.  Trying to change them will drain YOU and only YOU, and can create greater challenges and conflicts.  Understand that they FEAR being disrespected, not being loved and they fear the world as being a dangerous or unjust place.
  3. HAVE COMPASSION for them by trying to wear their brain for a moment or through a situation. Can you even begin to imagine what it must FEEL like to be bombarded with negative thoughts all day every day?  A negative person’s energy is really a place he or she cannot escape and if YOU absorb it or take it personally, you suffer with them.  Just listen, but do not respond to them in any capacity or fall prey to their controlling and negative mindset.  Do not feed it.  Doing so can have an opposite impact in that they make believe YOU ARE TRYING to change them.  Even if you agree with their negativity, just listen to their rants.
  4. TREAT THEM LIKE AN ADULT AND MAKE THEM RESPONSIBLE FOR THEIR OWN NEGATIVITY. Don’t “blame” them for being negative, but rather, when they begin to infiltrate your safe space, act like a grownup yourself and take FULL RESPONSIBILITY for YOUR happiness.  This is one of the most challenging components because we TRY to say “I am not happy because so-in-so did this to me”.    You create your own happiness.  Do this by
    1. Pursuing your own dreams, not in a “fuck you I’m doing my own thing whether you like it or not” manner, but in a way that still allows you to be who you are and want to be without stonewalling them or cutting them out.
    2. Take risks. Do things differently.
    3. Build trusting relationships with those who MATTER. Stop making relationships with know takers and purveyors of drama and negativity.
    4. Own your choices, even if the negative person tries to make a negative response towards your choices (ie….they tell you that you SAID something WRONG when you spoke truth for YOU and from your own space).

Negativity can destroy people and relationships.  It can be a cause for addictions, depression, emotional struggles and the inadvertent removal of another’s SHINE.

I’m not suggesting that life is rainbows and butterflies, but what I am suggesting is that those who DEAL with negative people must know and understand their OWN BASIC HUMAN RIGHTS:

Being treated with respect

Ability to freely and without judgment express your OWN feelings, wants and opinions

Set your own priorities

Say NO without guilt

Get what you pay for

Have an opinion DIFFERENT than others

Protect SELF and take care of SELF from THREATS of physical, mental or emotional HARM

Create our OWN happiness

Just LIVE!

The Rescue: When HELPING is Actually HURTING

The individual personality is believed to be constructed from a matrix of variables, both physiological and energy, or cosmic elements.  Astrological and celestial factors as well as environmental factors help form the beautiful persona known as “who we are”.  Unfortunately, through trauma, pain, suffering, abuse and harsh environments, we also develop similar patterns, or groupings, called survival archetypes.

While there are twelve commonly recognized personality archetypes that dominate each person as delineated by Carl Jung, there are also different sub-types that lend to very specific experiences. These traits typically arise during childhood, when family dynamics tend to hedge the innate personality trait of an individual.  When the archetypes are aligned positively with our own understanding of them, we can begin to positively experience and tap into energies about others and ourselves that keep us safe and trekking upon our individuals journeys in a rich and fulfilling manner.

However, when we allow the archetypes to draw upon the negative, and to utilize fear and the unconscious mind to make decisions, we give them the power of

Under the FOUR distinct survival personality archetypes known as the Victim, the Saboteur, the Prostitute and the Inner Child, none appears to create the greatest potential for collateral damage than that of the “Victim”.

The Victim is really a learned pattern of survival based upon childhood experience and maybe even a dose of soul contract.  As an individual grows up, or begins adulting, they carry forward this survival archetype and its distinct traits.

Victims often create a sense of self-victimization through negative self-talk.  They inwardly feed themselves on criticisms about not being good enough or deserving.  Typically, they will hold themselves as being less valuable and less worthy than others, even if they do not express this externally.  Outward identifiers of a victim tend to be fairly clear in that they often BLAME and have a strong need to control.

Other distinguishing traits of a Victim are their love of other’s pity, sympathy and willingness to rescue them.  It tells us that we are NOT at fault and that we are being taken advantage of by others.

The victim holds a very HIGH risk potential for becoming caught up in what is known as the “Drama Triangle“, a well-known and repeatedly studied pattern model of social interactions and conflict responses, which typically develops from an initial response of being a Victim or a Persecutor.  From this initiation, others are “drawn in” under the other roles, adding in the ENABLER or Rescuer, sometimes shifting between two or more roles, thereby creating a trifecta of “drama”.  In general, a very stable couple can be completely destabilized by a third party.

Within this highly dysfunctional triangle, the most caustic and hidden relationship is the one between the Rescuer and the Victim, primarily the role of the Rescuer.

Before we delve any further, lets look at the THREE edges, or roles, of the drama triangle.

As a general rule, the Victim is often identified by the “poor me” scenario, revealing a life of being held down, oppressed, hopeless, shamed, sad and in general, being the helpless victims of perceivably harmful interactions.  They DENY having responsibility for the consequences they are in, while also DENYING being able to change circumstances.

They are, in their own mind, powerless.  They are victims.

Quite the opposite, the Persecutor is often identified by the “its YOUR fault” response, criticizing and blaming others (a victim) for ANYTHING they don’t like, don’t agree with or approve of. Persecutors are rigid, unyielding control-freaks who tend to use authoritative, angry and unpleasant tones, words and behaviors in responses to situations.  They have a tendency to regularly humiliate, make fun of, tease and even threaten anyone who does not fully hold their opinion in line.  These types are like to yell, raise their voice, especially in conflict or when explaining something they are against, or those with really loud voices who come across as yelling or mad.

They criticize, but are rarely able to help others solve problems and often cannot solve their own problems, except in extreme cases of self-isolation.

They are, in their own minds, above all, righteous and know everything.

The world is hard and mean … only the ruth­less sur­vive. I’ll be one of those.

The most deceitful of the three legs of the triangle is the Rescuer.  In fact, on the outside, the rescuer is often praised for doing “good deeds” but in reality, they feel a sense of guilty when they are not “saving” someone or helping someone.

This individual can be quite predatory in nature, using the plight of a victim to feed its selfish need.  The Rescuer is often deemed outwardly as a “HERO” or “HELPFUL”, but in reality is perpetuating the triangle into a continuous and toxic game.

Rescuers work to help others, typically NEEDING to help others in order to feel good about themselves in some aspect.  They will often neglect their own needs and own relationships, sacrificing the important things around them for their addiction to helping others.

Often described as enablers or having a co-dependency, this group requires a victim in order to rescue.  They use guilt (look at all I’ve done for you…..all I gave up) to hold their victim (I’m so depressed and no one will help me) hostage, perpetuating the codependency.

Lets look at the most common reflection of a rescue scenario:

It’s likely you know of relationships that include people who have found partners in need of rescuing-the rescue could have been from anything-unhappiness, financial chaos, substance abuse, depression, an abusive relationship, medical issues, or a past that left them wounded. Perhaps the rescuers you know intuitively recognized their partners’ core neediness or vulnerability, regardless of how well disguised that person’s weakness was at the beginning of their relationship.

When a Rescuer is without a victim to save, they actually FEEL GUILTY and less than, therefore will seek out another opportunity to be a savior.

These individuals are often fatigued and harried, constantly filling their lives with work and stress at the expense of themselves and their families.

It needs to be understood that those who are in the “Drama Triangle” often switch roles (they become Rescuer, Victim and Persecutor given different situations), however they remain in the triangle because the triangle meets their personal and UNCONSCIOUS unhealed needs, often from their past.

The misleading agenda of the Rescuer is often hidden behind control and manipulation.  They tend to carry the roles of mother hen, feeder of the strays, king of the broken, the savior, the general helper and nurturer of the weak, broken and despondent.  They are constantly looking for ways to FIX or HELP other’s out, and not necessarily for the one receiving the assistance!

Being a rescuer is an ADDICTION derived from their own unconscious need to be valued.

The Rescuer can be found in many roles, both public and family-oriented, such as volunteering at shelters and centers, careers that involve saving people, hosting/leading fundraisers, events of recognition (suicide, veterans, homeless etc.), taking on the role of the caregiver for elderly parents who need professional intervention, playing the “friend” mediator/counselor between couples in conflict, helping those who need to get on their feet and so many other roles.  The key element is that they actually sacrifice their OWN resources, and for married couples and families, the shared resources such as time, money and energy to “HELP”, which often ends up creating greater issues.  Moreover, the reality of the reward is almost non-existent in that the outcomes of being a savior or warrior for the weak and downtrodden are one sided and not reciprocated.

The Rescuer enables the destructive behaviors that a victim creates because he / she has a NEED (addiction) to be NEEDED.

Like stray cats, the victims don’t go away and the Rescuer continues to have a “job” that is esteemed and held up through social praise.

How to get out of the game?

The MOST IMMEDIATE and effective approach is for the Victim to simply take on the responsibility of their own plight, recognize they hold power to change their circumstances and to understand they can make the choices that will positively change their lives.  They NO LONGER NEED someone to save them, help them or do it for them.  Unfortunately, this doesn’t necessarily help the Rescuer.

Because the center of the drama triangle is the most balanced place to be, the solution for escaping also reside within its core.  There is responsibility (the healing for the victim), compassion (the healing for the persecutor) and compassion (the healing for the rescuer) in equal parts within the center.   When you hold CENTER, the drama cannot exist because you no longer need to SAVE someone, and the Victim will essentially back off or search for another Rescuer.

Taking a HARSH stance against someone we love can create a negative relationship, therefore we want to understand their poor choices and counter them with our own skills of enlightenment and awareness by simply holding space and remaining neutral.

The neutrality requires that we no longer look at the situation as being stronger or better and them being weaker or less, creating a ONE UP / ONE DOWN game.  When dealing with conflict in those who have personality disorders, it is even MORE important not to get dragged into a game of RIGHT/WRONG, CORRECT/INCORRECT, BETTER/WORSE, BLAME or ACCUSATION/DESERVING of a DEFENSE, MORE/LESS.

As a Rescuer, you must simply STOP fixing, helping and caretaking to keep peace, to help the other from being seen negatively (hiding toxic traits such as addiction or criminal activity), to try and save someone from their own caustic behaviors that have led to their consequences (obesity, self-inflicted disease, etc.).  Stopping means making a CHOICE TO STOP.  It isn’t something you ask others on how to do, you just STOP.

When you actively make the choice to stop saving and helping those who cannot be helped or saved, you break the cycle of drama.

Live life authentically and with healing energy.