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If you suffer from an eating disorder now or have in the past, please email Joanna for a free telephone consultation.



Eating Disorder Recovery
Joanna Poppink, MFT
Eating Disorder Recovery Psychotherapist
serving Arizona, California, Florida, Oregon and Utah.
All appointments are virtual.


Astronaut Mae Jemison Suits up for Launch ksc 92pc 1881Standard advice in getting ahead in life is usually, play to your strengths. This can be the worst advice you follow.


Questions asked by career counselors, guidance counselors, potential employers in job interviews, concerned parents and friends and even romantic partners looking to build a future with you are: 
  1. What do you like?
  2. What are you good at?
  3. What would you like to be doing?
  4. What's your dream?
  5. Do you have a vision of your most desired life?

I suggest to you that if you want to change your life, get healing and inspiration, move on a new path with a higher quality of relationships and activities based on what you value, the above are the wrong questions.
They are wrong because your answers will come from what you know. When you answer from your existing knowledge of yourself based on your feelings, your past, your hopes based on how you are living now, nothing new is possible. Your answers are a rehash of your standard thinking.

Following through on these questions will give you more of the same.

Real change means you are living differently, thinking differently, responding to people and situations differently.  You draw on skills, knowledge and emotional grounding that are different from what is familiar to you now.

You can't define those things from here where you are now.  So what you need, if you want a different quality of life that is more meaningful to you, is an array of different questions.

  1. What are your weaknesses?
  2. What are the conversations and discussions in the news that you know little or nothing about?
  3. What are the areas in which you invariably need to ask for help?
  4. What challenges have you seen others face that would be overwhelming to you?
  5. What breaks your heart and makes you feel helpless?
  6. What scares you and makes you feel angry and incompetent?

These are the questions that point to areas in yourself that you can nurture, feed, educate, and train. These are the questions whose answers don't give you more of the same. They give you new and different. They change your alignment with yourself and your alignment with the world.

They change your inner conversation.

The exterior of our lives is shaped by our inner psychological and spiritual structure.  We make choices about people, relationships, jobs, hobbies, entertainment based on our inner self talk and known feelings.

When we change from within we make different choices.  We  recognize and respond to different opportunities, opportunities that are invisible and unreachable from our old standards.

Recognizing your weaknesses and taking action to inform and strengthen yourself is your way to move beyond your current limitations. You won't even know what is beyond your current horizon until you have the capacity to actually see it.  Beyond your horizon is more. Beyond your horizon is a fascinating, enriching, meaningful world that could be yours.

Step into your weaknesses and develop. If you don't know how to read you can't imagine the world you could live in once you can decipher marks on a page into information and ideas.

Stretch into what you don't know and give yourself new tools.  Your psyche will develop along with your new skills. Self destructive habits, designed to keep you in your old familiar place, will fall away. As you expand yourself, you expand your world.

(*pix) Looking Back: Astronaut Mae Jemison Suits Up For Launch
courtesy of NASA

"On Sept. 12, 1992, launch day of the STS-47 Spacelab-J mission on space shuttle Endeavour, NASA astronaut Mae Jemison waits as her suit technician, Sharon McDougle, performs a unpressurized and pressurized leak check on her spacesuit at the O&C Building at Kennedy Space Center. Dr. Jemison was the first African-American woman to fly in space."

What weaknesses, deficits, and challenges did she face as she developed herself for her expanded life? What can you address in your life now?

Mae C. Jemison biography

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