For the average person, messages about weight loss and the accompanying social media posts, magazine articles, and conversations with family members may be harmless and easily forgotten. For someone suffering from an eating disorder, those messages about “shaping up” or “shedding weight” can be toxic.
This year, evaluate how you want to improve your life and set goals that will focus on internal betterment rather than weight loss. We have listed a few ideas below.
Goals that aren’t focused on your body weight:
Keep a journal
Writing routinely allows you to better understand what makes you feel happy and confident. When it becomes obvious that certain things or people are detrimental to your happiness, it is ok to let them go and move on. Writing about things that bring painful emotions can serve as a stress release and makes it easier to feel calm and present.
Practicing gratitude can be done through a gratitude journal, word of mouth, or even just smiling more often. Through practicing these simple actions, you may experience stronger relationships with others, a more optimistic view towards life, better sleep, and a stronger overall sense of wellbeing.
Remember to drink your water
Drinking an appropriate amount of water helps maximize physical performance, prevents headaches, and can improve brain function. Your body needs water to function. Keeping it hydrated is only going to help you perform better throughout the day.
Volunteering regularly not only builds relationships with those you are serving but it increases happiness and often provides you with a sense of purpose. Volunteering often leaves individuals feeling a sense of accomplishment, which improves the way they view themselves.
Call a loved one more often
Loved ones often have our best interests at heart and some healthy encouragement can be exactly what you need. Speaking on the phone, rather than texting, is a more intimate way to get to know one another and is a great way to strengthen a relationship.
Practicing self-acceptance can seem like a difficult task. We often focus on our flaws rather than our strengths. Talking and thinking about ourselves in such a negative way can be detrimental to our health and our relationships with others. A few ways to practice self-acceptance include confronting your fears, staying positive, believing in yourself, and practicing forgiveness.
The first few months of a new year often evolve into the period of time we evaluate the previous year and plan for the upcoming year. Evaluating the last 12 months can consist of criticism and a lot of comparing, which can then lead to unhealthy resolutions or goals. We need to remind ourselves how dangerous it is to compare our goals and accomplishments to others.
Set goals that are going to make you happy. Make this year about your recovery and mental health.
If you or someone you love is exhibiting signs and symptoms of an eating disorder, don’t be afraid to reach out for help.