Posted on November 24th, 2020 in Eating Disorders
by Kate Fisch
Thanksgiving is of course a day where we practice gratitude. But, for those healing from an eating disorder, gratitude is a powerful tool for sustained recovery best practiced every day. Eating disorder behavior and thoughts often create a false sense of reality that steers us away from important, worthwhile aspects of our lives and personal identity. Expressing gratitude intentionally for the non-eating disorder components of our lives reminds us that we are and will continue to be more than just our eating disorders. Here are 4 ways to increase your expression of recovery gratitude:
- Gratitude List. Take just a few minutes first thing in the morning to jot down a list of things you are grateful for in your life that are not eating disordered in nature. Maybe it’s a list of supportive people who have helped you along your recovery path, or it could even be something as simple as a warm shower.
- Rewrite the narrative around major challenges in your life. For example, instead of seeing a past relapse as a failure, perhaps explore how that recovery stumble offered you helpful information about what works for you and what does not work for you in terms of staying on a recovery path.
- Take care of yourself or your space. Practicing self-care is a great way to express gratitude for your health. We can take this a step further and take care of our physical space. Maybe find time to touch up the paint you’ve noticed chipping, clean out an overcrowded closet, or spend a few extra minutes giving the kitchen an extra thorough clean.
- Tell someone: Recovering from and eating disorder is rarely tackled alone. Identify someone who has or continues to support you on your recovery path and let them know how much you appreciate them. You can even go old school and write them a thank you note.
Kate Fisch is a licensed psychotherapist and founder of Northside Mental Health. Kate’s clinical experience and area of expertise is in the field of eating disorder treatment and substance abuse treatment.