Recovery from an Eating Disorder: A Journey

Recovery from an eating disorder, like life itself, isn’t a race. As long as you look at recovery as a continuum, rather than a single destination or a cure, there is plenty of reason to hope. Recovery’s leap of faith eventually blossoms into a willingness to explore new places in yourself, relationships, and your world. Some steps on the journey are slow and tentative, others come more easily-but each can be taken only one step at a time. Recovery is progress, not perfection, and that is the formula that holds the real promise of peace. Recovery is hindered when you judge yourself harshly by someone else’s progress; your problems are the only ones you can ever fully understand- and that itself is a challenge. On the other hand, a healthy comparison with someone doing well in recovery can inspire you and show you that recovery is achievable.

Recovery is not a result of choices among alternative paths offered by the present, but a path that is created -created first in the mind and will, and created next in behaviors. The path to recovery is not some place you are going to eventually reach, but one you are creating with each step you take. The paths are not to be found, but made, and the activity of making them changes both the maker and the destination.

There are often times in the process of recovery when you may tell yourself you have had a “bad” day after one single incident or event. This negative thought leads you into a cycle of self-defeating thoughts and behaviors, which transform the “bad” incident into a bad hour, day, or even week. Try to look at your slips in recovery as bad moments, not bad days. For every bad moment you have during the day, think of a positive moment you had during the day. You will find that you may not have really had a bad day at all, just a day filled with good and “not so good” moments.