Do you eat to relieve tension? Maybe you call it by another name—stress, distress, anxiety, feeling antsy. Whatever you call it, the truth is that you don’t need to eat to release tension. By switching your view of it, you can reduce mindless eating. You may feel tension in the construct we call the mind. Your thoughts race, your self-talk stokes the fires of pressure building and building, and your head feels as if it’s…

Read More Releasing Tension to Decrease Mindless Eating

Many dysregulated eaters are filled with fear and anxiety, but don’t register them as major problems. Rather, they think that their problem is food or weight—or stress. If you’re often anxious and worried, it’s time to better understand these emotions. Although “Fears 2015” (Sarasota Herald Tribune, 1/18/15, pp. 4-7) is about our big cultural fears like Ebola, terrorism and, even gluten, author Maura Rhodes advises that that too much fear is something we should be…

Read More Are Your Eating Problems Caused by Fear and Anxiety?

If your partner, parent, friend or co-worker is abusive or neglectful, you might be unable to fathom how this person manages to feel okay about his or her behavior. How can people so not get what they’re doing wrong? Can’t they understand that the way they act and the things they say hurt people? How is it possible that they don’t recognize what’s acceptable and appropriate versus what’s unacceptable or inappropriate? It’s entirely possible—because they’re…

Read More Not Everyone Is As Reflective As You Are

Did you know that it’s healthy and necessary for well-being to cry? Although you may say you hate to cry, especially in front of others, that only means you have wrongly developed negative feelings about crying from family and culture. In “No sob story: the good news about crying” (Sarasota Herald-Tribune, page 38E), Mary Carpenter tells us why shedding tears is important. First and foremost, crying relieves stress. Most of you have probably experienced this…

Read More Why It’s Healthy to Cry

I was listening to an NPR program when the interviewee mentioned that, in order to change his life, her husband would need to see himself in a different way than his mother saw him. I thought how true it is that unless we’re viewed differently than how we see ourselves, we can carry around the same negative view our parents had of us for a lifetime. So, whose eyes do you see yourself through and…

Read More The Importance of Seeing Yourself through Different Eyes

Relief: Release Stress and Harmful Habits and Awaken Your Best Self by Sasha Loring is full of strategies and techniques to help people with eating problems improve their relationship with food and enjoy a happier, more peaceful and satisfying life. You can find out more about Sasha, the book, and her work at Sasha Loring. Relief starts out by describing our brain functions, focusing on how they affect our nervous system, including an explanation of…

Read More Book Review: Relief–Release Stress and Harmful Habits and Awaken Your Best Self

We have long known that a correlation between trauma and eating disorders exists, and now the picture is becoming clearer and clearer according to “The Power of Treating Eating Disorders and Trauma Simultaneously” by Megan Ross, Director of Program Development and Trauma Awareness at Timberline Knolls Treatment Center (Eating Disorder Hope’s March 2015 Professional Newsletter). There are two types of trauma: big “T” and little “t.” The former includes catastrophic events such as physical abuse…

Read More More on Trauma and Eating Disorders

We’ve all had “bad” things happen to us and some of you have had “terrible” things or many “terrible” things befall you—neglect, rape, bullying, sexual/verbal/physical abuse, poverty, accidents, and other events which were out of your control. Does that mean you must experience pain and suffering due to these events? You likely believe that pain and suffering are inevitable by-products of such happenings and cannot be separated from the distress you (or anyone) will experience…

Read More Choose the Meaning of Events, Even Traumatic Ones

Talking with a client who was worrying about what might happen in the future, I told her, “Well we don’t know what the future will bring, but we can always know what we bring to it.” It’s true. We can’t ever know exactly what the future holds in store—events out of our control, uplifting surprises, life-changing good luck, tragic misfortune, or natural occurrences that turn our lives upside down. Life is a crapshoot: You roll…

Read More What We Bring to the Future

I’m all about encouraging troubled eaters to take baby steps to grow healthier, but there are some life-altering decisions which can catapult you forward and help you reach your goals more quickly. These are decisions that have high-impact consequences. Make a poor choice and you reinforce behaviors that keep you stuck in dysfunctional patterns. But make one in your long-term best interest and you alter you brain map by reinforcing neural pathways that lead you…

Read More Choosing to Stay Stuck or Move Forward