Breaking the Cycle

Many people have described the onset of their eating disorder as being associated with a feeling of being out of control in regards to some aspect of their life. Dieting felt like something that they could control, and this was a relief at the time. However, there are co-occurring underlying issues that arise when feeling ‘out of control. Dieting is very harmful on the body and 95% of diets fail. Is there anything in your life that feels out of your control and is increasing the urge to control your body to compensate? 

Some things to remember:

  • People who suffer from eating disorders tend to have a negative body image. People can feel parts of themselves as uncomfortable and this is translated by them into they are fat and ugly. 
  • A person with an eating disorder has view of themself as a person that is often colored by their feelings about their body, which then leads to undermining their self-confidence. 
  • Perfectionism can lead to a negative body image and misery while striving for the unobtainable goal of the “perfect” body. 
  • For someone suffering with an eating disorder, general negative feelings like feelings of hopelessness or depression can readily be displaced into feelings of fatness. 

Some tips for when you may be struggling with body image is avoid looking or touching the body which perpetuates negative thoughts and feelings about it.

How to break the cycle

-Try to identify times when you feel worst about your body- are you misplacing other problems onto your body? Can you identify these underlying issues – what might they be? Boredom? Anxiety? Anger? Trauma?

Some questions for you:

-Are you seeing only the negative aspects of your shape and forgetting the rest of your body? 

-What are some ways to take baby steps into body acceptance? Try not to focus on body parts that you are dissatisfied with. See your body as a whole. A body is not like a car that can be altered and changed when desired. Bodies change naturally throughout the course of one’s life and trying to alter one’s body is harmful, as it is the underlying issues beneath that need to be addressed. 


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