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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.


When you have an eating disorder you can feel "stuck" in repetitive behaviors and thought processes. Self doubt and merciless self criticism build along with your frustration and growing despair.  You might even feel a sense of doom as you continue to be bogged down and limited despite your attempts to get past your blocks.


Sound familiar?


I heard James Conlon, the music director of the Los Angeles Music Center, give a talk about Richard Wagner.  Conlon casually referred to the fact that Wagner wrote "Siegfried" to the point where Siegfried went to sleep under a tree. Wagner stopped his work on that musical drama for eight years.  Writer's block?  Conlon said, "Like any block, it simply meant he had something else to do first."  In Wagner's case, he had to create "Tristan and Isolde." 


What about you?  If you can't stop bingeing or purging or overeating or starving or obsessing about food in one way or another, and your attempts to change continually don't work, what is it that you might have to do first?


For example, a painter might be "stuck" in his doing portraits because he has to practice making hands more realistic or maybe study the anatomy of the human face.  An author might be "stuck" in writing a novel with an important character who is 90 years old.  The author might have to stop writing and become richly involved with older people or actually have to wait until she herself was older before she could move past her so called writer's block.


What about you? What might you have to do first, before you are ready to loosen the grip of your eating disorder? 


For example, you might need to change your environment and place more positive and supportive people around you by volunteering at an organization or taking a class or moving to a better living situation. You might need to involve yourself in a spiritual activity that seems right for you.


You might need to share your discomfort with appropriate people, like a psychotherapist or support group or members of OA. 


Instead of criticizing yourself for being "stuck" ask yourself what you might have to do before you address the issues that seem implacable.  You might find that what seems like a detour is the most efficient way to move ahead in your recovery and your life.























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