Stop looking for eating disorder recovery. Instead aim for a meaningful life.

Belvoir secret passageSuppose I said, "Stop looking for eating disorder recovery."  I'm a therapist in Los Angeles who's been specializing in eating disorder recovery for decades. Would you think I've given up? or lost my mind? Or would you perhaps think that maybe I've discovered something? Are you curious and even ready to explore a mystery that could surprise you by giving you the life you've yearned for?

In reviewing my own recovery from overeating and bulimia and the recovery of many of my patients I see what really works for success. It's not a secret, but I don't write about it much because you don't see the connection between what I say and the recovery you imagine. When I write about the details of an eating disorder you respond.  When I write about owls or climate change or gardens or social justice or dogs and cats your response is minimal and then it's about what seems cute or interesting in a remote way. 

When I post articles and videos about women accomplishing something powerful in music or politics or medicine or business, you respond minimally except perhaps to say the person is a favorite of yours or that she is inspiring. A link is missing between these posts and your understanding of my attempts to show you a path.

Now I intend to focus, not on eating disorder recovery, but on building your own path to your life of satisfaction, fulfillment, joy, love and meaning.

And that's what it's all about, isn't it?  I mean, you say you want eating disorder recovery.  But do you? Don't you want what you think you can have if you actually have eating disorder recovery? And don't you most certainly want to get rid of many aspects of your life that exist because you have an eating disorder? (Illness, fear, bloating, hiding, shame, false persona, weird and sometimes dangerous relationships, broken relationships, etc.)

So I say, let's not aim for eating disorder recovery.  Let's aim for a good life, a wonderful life, a life that's so good you can't even imagine it when an eating disorder or any other limitation closes down your imagination. Let the eating disorder fade as you go after what's truly important to you, whether you know what that is yet or not. Let courage and discovery be your guide.

This will be the theme of my posts for a while.  I've written so much about eating disorders including a book on how to recover.  I've alluded to the real path that can take you to the life you were meant to live. But now I'm going to be much more direct.  I hope I will capture your imagination and the deep spark of wisdom within you that knows what you really want is to be truly alive and living a life worth living.

Here are some questions to think about. I hope you'll respond to some in the comment section below.  

  1. Are you looking for eating disorder recovery?
  2. Have you found your method?
  3. How long have you been using it and does it work for you?
  4. What do you want out of life?
  5. What do you care about?
  6. What in the world makes you happy, sad, mad, glad, disappointed, inspired?
  7. If you were young, rich, strong, powerful, free, well educated and confident what would you do in this world? Think Big.  
Psychotherapy with Joanna

Links to help prime your imagination:

10 Everyday Things Creative People Do That Lead to Success

Creativity and Innovation: Your Keys to a Successful Organization

Success through Creativity and Hard Work

Success Through Creativity

6 Obstacles To Creative Thinking And How To Overcome Them: Develop Problem Solving Skills For Business Success

*pix Belvoir Fortress This work has been released into the public domain by its author, Emír Balduin Hallef Omar Ali al-Adid bin Abú Sharee al-Kerak. This applies worldwide.


0 # Powerful and challengingmylifex2 2016-02-27 23:37
Ok. I'll jump in. So I haven't been on here in a while. My ED has been kicking into high gear and I'm getting ready to begin a
program three nights a week. I've been seeing my therapist and a nutritionist. I'll be BRUTALLY honest. I'm scared to death! I think this is because I want this to work. I want to get the ED voices out of my head so that I can move forward. I've spent too many years of my life with this.

I'm harming my body in ways that may be permanent. My vision is poor, my kidneys are taking a beating- i have begun to get neuropathy -I HAVE to do this!!

I've stopped caring about my job, I'm exhausted, my kids don't even expect much from me anymore. It's pathetic but it's motivating.

I want more out of life. I want to wake up refreshed, not tired. I want to truly care about what my patients are going through instead of wishing they would stop talking because I feel worse.
I want to stop obsessing and free my life for other things! I want to garden. I want to have energy to clean my house. I want to stop isolating and go out. I want a companion. I want to feel comfortable in my own skin. I want to stop calling myself names.

I want to pursue a new passion- perhaps go back to school even. I want to be able to say I love you to myself.i want to volunteer with those less fortunate. I want to go back to church.
I want to get better without being afraid. I want to trust my treatment team. I want to be able to throw out my scales. Maybe I want to work with other people going through what I have gone through. I want to write a memoir. I'm going to write a memoir.
0 # TruthGuest 2016-05-31 12:45
Seems like you have an amazing start to this journey! It can be slow and it is certainly not easy, but it seems like you have a lot to motivate you to continue to put on foot in front of the other, day after day. I know that getting started was the hardest part for me and I had a strong team that kept me going through the ups and downs. I just wanted to encourage you that you can do this, but I also wanted to share something with you that was a complete game changer for me on my road to recovery. I suffered from phases of anorexia followed by binge eating disorder spanned over the course of several years. I felt like I was constantly walking through a fog and I didn't even want to begin to think of the toll that this was taking on my body. I recently discovered the power of pure therapeutic ketones and they have saved me from myself. I finally have the mentally clarity that I have been missing my whole life and they have helped to "unconfuse" my metabolism in a way I didn't think was possible. I don't know if they would do the same for you, but I wanted to share with you the power of pure therapeutic ketones like someone else did for me and also tell you that you can do this!!
Laura R
0 # TracyLaura R 2016-02-29 21:02
Hey Tracy. Just wanted to hop on and cheer you on. So glad you are going after what you want. Keep going. I believe in you!
0 # Tracypinkjoanna 2016-03-02 14:30
I think you started your memoir with your eloquent comment. You write clearly, vividly and are speaking your truth. Please keep going. You may be on a roll. Sometimes we need to go down far to find the inner fire that lights our way. Sounds like you are finding it.

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