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Keys to Self-Care in Recovery

addiction eating disorder intuitive eating online therapy self care May 08, 2023

Recovering from disordered eating is a complex and challenging process that often requires professional support. Self-care rituals can support eating disorder recovery by promoting physical and emotional well-being. Here are some key aspects of self-care rituals that can contribute to the recovery process:

  1. Establish regular and balanced eating patterns: Consistent and balanced meals are essential for nourishing your body and stabilizing your energy levels. Create a meal plan with the help of a healthcare professional to ensure you're getting the necessary nutrients and establishing balanced eating patterns (that include pleasure and joy with food)!

  2. Practice mindful eating: Cultivate awareness and attunement to your body's hunger and fullness cues. Slow down during meals, savor each bite, and pay attention to the food's taste, texture, and satisfaction. Avoid any distractions while eating, and focus on fully engaging your senses.

  3. Engage in pleasurable physical activities: Find physical activities that you enjoy and that promote a positive connection with your body. This could include yoga, dancing, walking in nature, or any exercise that feels joyful and empowering rather than punitive or driven by the desire to change your body. I've been getting mindful movement in with Melissa Wood Health lately, but find what works die you!

  4. Prioritize rest and relaxation: Allow yourself ample time for rest and relaxation. This can include engaging in activities such as bathing, reading a book, practicing deep breathing exercises, meditating, or engaging in hobbies that bring you joy. Rest is crucial for physical and mental restoration.

  5. Get involved with a supportive network: Surround yourself with individuals who support your recovery and positively influence your self-image. Engage in meaningful relationships allowing open and honest communication about your struggles and progress. Participate in support groups or seek therapy to connect with others with similar experiences. I enjoy being part of networks doing amazing things, such as the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA)

  6. Cultivate self-compassion: Treat yourself with kindness, understanding, and acceptance. Challenge self-critical thoughts and replace them with self-compassionate ones. Remember: Healing takes time, and setbacks are a natural part of recovery. Be patient and gentle with yourself.

  7. Develop healthy coping mechanisms: Explore and practice beneficial coping tools to manage stress, anxiety, and emotional distress. This could include journaling, engaging in creative activities, deep breathing exercises, mindfulness meditation, or seeking support from loved ones or a therapist during difficult times.

  8. Set boundaries: Learn to set and enforce boundaries that protect your physical and emotional well-being. Say no to activities or situations that might trigger or compromise your recovery. Prioritize your needs and communicate them assertively with others.

  9. Challenge negative body image thoughts: Work on challenging and reframing negative thoughts about your body. Practice body-positive affirmations, exercise in body image, and surround yourself with body-positive content that celebrates diverse bodies.

  10. Seek professional support: Consider working with a therapist or treatment team specializing in eating disorder recovery. They can provide guidance, support, and evidence-based interventions to help you navigate the complexities of the recovery journey.

Remember, self-care rituals are highly personal, and tailoring them to your needs and preferences is essential. Be patient with yourself, celebrate small victories, and reach out for support when needed. Recovery takes time, but with commitment and self-compassion, healing is possible.