By On December 30th, 2016

4 Healthy New Year’s Resolutions For Someone Living With An Eating Disorder

New Year’s is a time to look back to the past year and think about the future. Many people do this by forging resolutions to improve themselves and their lives.

Of course, one of the most common New Year’s resolutions is to lose weight. But, that isn’t always a healthy choice. For people living with an eating disorder, vowing to lose weight can mean committing to unhealthy behaviors and damaging high expectations.

Ash Thoms is an eating disorder survivor who has learned there are much more important things in life than “being thin” – like being healthy and living a full life.

She recently shared a number of resolutions that help her keep on a positive path and expanding her horizons in new and interesting ways. If you’re looking for a goal to better yourself in the new year, these are a great place to start:

1. Find a new hobby.

The thing about hobbies, for me, is they teach me to be kind to myself. I love writing, but I wasn’t always the writer I am today. I started painting fairly recently, and I’m not incredibly great at it, but I love it. Hobbies teach me that I don’t have to be perfect to enjoy something. I can just enjoy it and continue to practice. Maybe I get better, maybe I don’t, but I’ll learn more about myself and about being patient in the process.

2. Drop the self-deprecating humor.

I will be the first to admit it is easy to make jokes that do not show myself kindness. It is easy to respond with self-hate in order to make myself more approachable to other people. I don’t feel that way though. I do not hate myself. The humor I use is a coping-mechanism I picked up a long time ago and never really let go of. Now, it is nothing more than an old, bad habit. Breaking the habit will be hard, and it will require heightened awareness, but it is another step toward living my recovery fully.

3. Get out of my comfort zone.

There’s a reason for my comfort zone. It’s where I feel safe to exist. My comfort zone isn’t a place of growth, though. Inside my comfort zone, I’m not challenged. Right now, I follow a pretty strict routine. I want to get out of my comfort zone and have more experiences. I want to go swimming at midnight and dance until the early hours of the morning. I want to say yes to opportunities that present themselves, even if they scare me (as long as they’re healthy!) I want to get uncomfortable, learn from it and grow from it.

4. Do the things that scare me the most.

This goes along with getting out of my comfort zone, but its focus is different. I’m still scared of realizing my goals. I am still trying to push myself to do what I want to do. What scares me right now is the concept of people knowing me beyond surface level.

Another thing that scares me right now is the idea of making a career out of my hobby of writing. My goal for this year is to get past the fear and try. I don’t expect full success because that isn’t realistic. However, I do want to try. I want to push myself to realize the goals I have now.

When I was in my eating disorder, my only goal was to disappear. I no longer want that to be my goal. I want to take up space and be loud. I want to meet and interact with people in a heart-driven way. I don’t want to simply survive this next year. I want to live it.

If you think you or someone you know may be living with an eating disorder, call us at (888) 298-4673. We can answer any questions you have and see if treatment is right for you.

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