Five years ago, I realized that I needed to go to counseling. I had been coping with stress and heartache through both undereating and overeating for almost ten years, and my negative thoughts about myself had become debilitating and all-consuming.
I sought treatment from an outpatient eating disorder clinic, and I fully expected my counselor to teach me how to control my eating; instead, my counselor went to the root of the problem and taught me how to control my thinking.
I learned that destructive behaviors (such as eating disorders) are part of a three-part cycle: we have a negative thought about ourselves, we then feel a negative emotion about ourselves, and we then cope with that feeling through a destructive behavior. In order to stop this cycle, we must have strategies to stop the negative self-talk that starts it all in the first place!
Whether or not you’ve ever struggled with an eating disorder, I think this episode will benefit you. I share three of the best tools that I learned in counseling:
1) Reject “filtered thinking” and embrace “big-picture thinking.”
2) Talk to yourself the way you would talk to your best friend, sister, or daughter.
3) Use “coping statements” to help you re-center and stay calm in moments when you might spiral into despair. Here is a list to get you started!
I truly believe that almost no topic is more important for women and mothers–so I hope you will listen, and let me know what you think in the comments.
Listening to and Loving your Body through Intuitive Eating (podcast with Power of Moms): https://powerofmoms.com/intuitive-eating/
“The Surprising Way I Confronted my Eating Disorder” (full narrative therapy): https://powerofmoms.com/eating-disorder/