About Eating Disorders
Recovery from an eating disorder is a lifelong journey. It is not easy, but it is possible. Developing healthy coping skills can help you maintain recovery during difficult times.
The ideas below present some alternatives to patterns of eating disordered behavior. Try a few of the coping skills on this list and find what works for you. Remember, changes make a difference, no matter how small you believe those changes are.
- Get a journal where you can write your feelings throughout the day.
- Grow your support system. The point is to find safe people to help you feel supported in recovery.
- Start calling safe people. As you become more accustomed to making calls, you will find yourself turning to others more easily.
- If you live with someone, plan a discussion about your needs. There may be changes the other person can make to help you.
- Get a list of feelings if you have difficulty identifying your experience. Refer to the list throughout the day, especially meal times.
- Notice meal times and content. If you record your level of satiety, urges to binge/restrict/purge, you may learn if there are foods that trigger you or length of time between meals that triggers you.
- Notice the way you speak to yourself about your food, body, or behaviors. Begin to add positive statements, gradually letting go of the negative. No eating disorder was ever cured through self-blame.
- Consider your spiritual life. Spirituality means different things to different people. Find out what it means for you and start to draw upon this part of you.
- Do you let yourself have needs and limits in your work or personal life? Holding back anger and resentment and stifling your needs leads to self-punishment through more eating disordered behavior.
- Find your voice. Practice with safe people. Start by telling them you’d like to practice saying “NO” to them about something that doesn’t matter. Let yourself start in a comfortable way.
- Make a list of positive affirmations. Pick one and say it daily for one month. The affirmation will become a part of you.
- Change the subject when other people talk about food, weight, or body size and shape.
- Take a bubble bath to relax yourself.
- Go to a movie with family or friends after meal time.
- Volunteer at an organization you feel passionate about.
- Plan enjoyable activities with friends or family.
- Read to someone else.
- Choose a hobby or take classes to learn a new skill.
Recovery is possible, and we’re here to help you get there.