Developing courage to listen to oneself and nurture one self and also accepting one's body can be a challenge in our culture. We live in a world with many stressors and expectations. We also have a constant overload of information that informs us how to eat, how to look and how to live. Weight and body image seem more important than who we are and how we experience life. Restricting and controlling food intake or having self discipline to exercise daily and be "fit," are seen as virtues. Eating disorders, body dissatisfaction and exercise obsessions are an epidemic for many females and males today.
Giving up an eating disordered lifestyle is difficult due to the fear of giving up a perceived control of one’s life or the control that eating behaviours have. Developing better skills to manage overwhelming and painful emotions and not disconnecting from one’s emotional experience through the eating disorder, is central for making change. Other necessities in recovery are: to truly examine one’s conflicts, confusion and pain; find ways of being present in one’s body; and accepting and working with one’s personality.
It is my belief, eating and exercise disorder symptoms are the voice through which a person expresses confusion, unmet needs, emotional intensity and pain. Part of recovery is making meaning of this. The ideal goal is to reach a place of self and body acceptance by experiencing and so integrating the emotional impacts in one's life. Altering one's self perceptions and placing oneself as a priority in one's life is also central to recovery. When the goal is to not be perfect but live to promote self growth and engage in relationships and experiences that enhance one's life.
I also encourage you to work with a registered eating disorder specialist dietician as part of the recovery process.
I provide individualized approaches that are combined with warmth, empathy and extensive training and knowledge. I work in a collaborative manner with other health professionals and also provide support and education to parents, family members, partners and friends who are part of the support system. There is no steadfast treatment for an eating disorder, I incorporate attachment based theory, CBT, DBT, body-centered therapy and expressive arts.
I offer regular workshops and retreats that focus on embodiment and creativity to develop deeper body awareness and acceptance in a group setting with others who have similar struggles.