Stress, anxiety, anger, hurt, frustration, sadness, tension, all cause different reactions in each of us. Some of us lash out, get defensive, whine, exercise, eat. Some try to dull the pain with addictions like drinking.


Oh you know that answer.


baking. not eating, just baking.

I’ve been wondering why, and this week it hit me. I didn’t have time to bake until today, and the week just kept getting worse. So yesterday, while in my car it clicked. There are two reasons. Ready? They’re going to rock your world. (ok maybe not but it kinda did for me)…

1. I bake because I have control over it. It’s exact, manageable. Definable. Not like stress, which is icky. Not like working with people, which is also icky. Not like dealing with emotions – also icky. When you bake, it’s precise. Each ingredient has a reason, a purpose – be it leavening, or flavor or texture or moisture – it’s got a reason for being there. Each element adds something. Leave one out and you know it immediately after it’s baked (or sometimes during). Follow a good recipe to the letter and it’s a predictable outcome. Same result every time. I like that.

2. I bake because you can’t disappoint a cookie (or a cupcake, or a brownie… you get the idea?). On the other hand I deal with people a lot. I let them down a lot. I feel guilty a lot (which is sometimes the right response).  But the cookie has low expectations – just “bake me” – and I can handle that. If I burn one, there’s no judgement. The next one forgives me and the next tray doesn’t punish me for the mistake. When I talk to the batter or the icing or the recipe (who me? no, I don’t do that), I can assure them that I’ll make their dreams come true. And they never doubt me or call me a straight up liar. I like that too.

So back to this week. This was a brownies, cookies, two kinds of cupcakes, and Bundt cake week. I think I’ve recovered. It’s a good thing I’m not a stress eater – that would be a whole new problem.

What about you? Are you an eater (we should be friends, I’ve got way too many treats here!)? Or a venter? or a screamer? or something else entirely? I’m curious…


Coping 101
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