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That Ice Cream Sandwich Is Not Special

That Ice Cream Sandwich Is Not Special

Over in my neck of the woods we just wrapped up Easter celebrations.

On the Wednesday before Easter, I received a box filled with at least 4 kinds of cookies. On Thursday I received a package that contained, among other things, chocolate chip English Muffins.

On the actual holiday I “had” to eat the malted chocolates that were in my daughter’s Easter basket because, you know, choking hazard.

Then there was the coffee cake. And the chocolate pie. And don’t forget about those various egg-shaped candies that only come around once a year.

If holidays were the only excuses to overdo it on the sweets, we’d all be okay. I mean, depending on your faith and nationality, there are probably only 10-15 days a year that would qualify as “special” days, and it seems totally healthy and acceptable to eat your body weight in malted chocolate eggs (or cherry cheesecake or pumpkin pie or buttery mashed potatoes) on those days, right?

Unfortunately, in the modern world there’s always going to be a “good” reason to overdo it.

You had a rough day at work.

You got a promotion at work.

Your kid won’t sleep.

Your kid slept through the night for the first time.

Your car died.

You got a new car.

You’re tired.

You’re excited.

You got dumped.

You’re on a date.

It’s a Friday.

It’s your birthday.

It’s your mom’s birthday.

It’s your best friend’s birthday.

It’s your cat’s birthday.

It’s…okay, okay, you get it, right? You can always, always, always think of a reason to overindulge. The secret is to find reasons NOT to overindulge.

Here are some things to keep in mind the next time you feel like eating four kinds of cookies and half a dozen egg-shaped candies (or whatever you know you shouldn’t be eating):

  • In this day and age, almost everything is mass produced and not special, not to mention available almost everywhere, any time of year. Those neon-frosted cupcakes that your company hauls out every time an employee has a birthday? NOT special and not worth it. See if you can encourage the powers that be to have a fruit cup option for those who don’t want birthday cake, or just say a polite, “No, thank you.” If you’re going to eat cake, eat it when it’s homemade by your grandma or in some famous bakery that is in a city you’re visiting for the first time.
  • Remind yourself that there will always be another special occasion right around the corner and that it’s okay to skip indulging this time. Who knows, if you do that often enough, it might become a habit and you’ll really only eat less-healthy foods on special occasions.
  • Come up with a list of reasons to not overdo it. You probably have greater goals in mind that take time to achieve, but which ultimately add up to something way more special than that box of oatmeal crème pies. Write out your top two or three health-related goals and reread them whenever you have the urge to eat that second (or fifth) brownie.
  • Decide ahead of time when it’s really worth it to you to overdo it. Sometimes it really might make you happy to eat more food or the kinds of foods that you know make your body feel a little off, since you can only get them once in a while. That way, when Uncle Jimmy’s famous deep fried Turkey with butter sauce hits the table, you’ll know you’re eating something you love that’s really, truly special.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.