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Shifting from Rigid to Flexible Behavior in ED Recovery

March 28, 2024 Mary-Elizabeth Schurrer

Learning how to make the shift from rigid to flexible behavior is a crucial part of eating disorder recovery. But I will be upfront about this: I am not a naturally adaptable or flexible person. I consider myself a creature of habit, someone who finds comfort in strict routines and stable environments. I structure my life in precise, meticulous detail—from the location in my house where I work, the times I eat and exercise, to the number of steps I take on a daily basis. Therefore, shifting from rigid to flexible behavior in eating disorder recovery is no simple task.

Precision creates a sense of order, which calms the anxious undercurrent humming in my brain. However, it also causes rigidity to the point where I feel wildly off-balance if a situation throws my routine for a loop. This lack of control can easily draw me into anorexia's orbit, so I recognize the need to shift from rigid to flexible behavior in eating disorder recovery.

Why It's Beneficial to Shift from Rigid to Flexible Behavior

Let's underscore this conversation with a story to help illustrate why making the shift from rigid to flexible behavior is so important for eating disorder recovery. The incident I will share in the following video is a recent example from my own life—and for the sake of honesty, I am not proud of it. But although I spectacularly fumbled this sequence of events, I do think it shows just how harmful rigidity can be. Not to mention, it reinforces the gifts of flexibility.

I'm Learning to Shift from Rigid to Flexible Behavior in My Recovery

Rigid behavioral patterns can offer an illusion of security, but where is the freedom in that? In my own experience, rigidity cements the foundation for an eating disorder to wreak havoc, whereas flexibility creates the space to flourish outside the limits of my comfort zone. So, I will take this lesson to heart as I move forward in the healing journey. 

See Also

APA Reference
Schurrer, M. (2024, March 28). Shifting from Rigid to Flexible Behavior in ED Recovery, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, April 16 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/survivinged/2024/3/shifting-from-rigid-to-flexible-behavior-in-ed-recovery



Author: Mary-Elizabeth Schurrer

Connect with Mary-Elizabeth on Facebook, Instagram and her personal blog.

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