I have many rigid beliefs about food. As someone who openly shares the nuances of my battle with anorexia, this is not a shocking confession. In fact, a common symptom of anorexia is associating specific foods with shame, fear, or distress. In spite of all the progress I've made to heal from my eating disorder, this restrictive outlook on food still remains one of the toughest myths to dispel. But with some encouragement from my personal trainer, I have recently started taking certain foods out of the shame category. Here's what I am discovering in the process.
Last week, I had two consecutive days off from work, which does not happen often. Usually, I spend those days oversleeping. But last week, I tried to stay busy with healthy activities. Here are five ways that I benefited from staying active on my days off from work.
Identity policing is when a person tries to tell another person (usually of a marginalized identity) that their identity is invalid or that they can't or don't belong to an identity group that the person is claiming to identify with. I wanted to talk about this after my last post where I talked about what it means to be a lesbian. Unfortunately, even within the queer community, I have had my identity policed on more than one occasion. Identity policing can be extremely hurtful and problematic. Allow me to illustrate with the example that follows from my life.
In the past, my trauma therapist has had to give me a reality check about over-identifying with borderline personality disorder (BPD). To be honest, I needed that wake-up call. Not every unpleasant thought or emotional dip is automatically a symptom. It's made me realize the pitfalls of getting too wrapped up in identifying with my mental health issues.
In her latest book, "Atlast of the Heart," Brene Brown describes 87 emotions that humans experience. While I could recognize and identify times when I felt most of the feelings she listed, foreboding joy was difficult to understand. Why do I run away and catastrophize when things are going well?
When healing from trauma, I have found that having a community is important. Although there are times I feel tempted to isolate myself when I'm struggling with my mental health, I have always felt better after reaching out to loved ones for support. This is especially the case when I seek out people who have been through similar traumas or share similar passions. Finding a community in which I feel welcomed and safe has done wonders for my healing from trauma.
Change can be powerful. Finding ourselves stuck in a rut, unable to see any alternative to our current situation, can lead to frustration and dissatisfaction. Could bringing joy and mental refreshment back into our lives be as simple as shaking up our daily routine and embracing the power of change?
This August, I underwent knee replacement surgery and had a schizoaffective episode. I didn’t think getting this surgery would affect my mental health as much as it did. Here’s how I ended up in a schizoaffective episode.
Do you know how to focus on glimmers instead of triggers? The healing journey away from verbal abuse will consist of many elements. Individuals who face verbal abuse may have posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), low self-esteem, or anxiety. Other people's actions can often create triggers that bring back negative emotions tied to past experiences. Sometimes, these triggers can be debilitating for individuals recovering from verbal abuse. However, the term glimmers has recently become common among people familiar with triggers.
The difficulty of living with this anxiety was the eventual development of a perception of weakness about myself. Anxiety and low self-esteem often go hand-in-hand because of this perceived inability to achieve unrealistic standards, and so with that constant feeling of inadequacy can come a feeling of weakness associated with a lack of control over situational stressors.