Eating disorders and body image struggles often go hand in hand. Granted there are people with eating disorders who aren’t concerned about their body image, but for multitudes of people with eating disorders, body image is a serious concern.
Body image issues may seem impossible to address, but remember that you don’t have to do it alone. While it may seem uncomfortable for you to talk about body image, make the most of your treatment team and/or support system to address this vital matter. For now, though, why not ask yourself the following questions in regard to body image? Perhaps doing so will help you get started with working through this concern.
•Do you realize that when you aren’t taking in adequate nourishment, the image you see in the mirror is distorted? Your brain literally doesn’t have what it needs to see yourself the way you really look.
•Will you try to focus on the health of your body instead of the size or shape of your body? In the end, which is more important, how you look or how you feel and function?
•How about doing your best to focus on how various parts of your body function and how they need to be healthy in order to do for you what you need them to do?
•Have you considered that perhaps your focus on the dissatisfaction you have with your body might be a distraction of some kind? If you were to put thoughts about your body image out of your mind, what would you think about? What is troubling you?
•Will you consider journaling about your body image? It’s possible this could provide you with some insights on the matter.
•How about writing down truthful statements about your appearance and reviewing them every day?
•Will you try to cut yourself some slack and not expect your body to look perfect?
•Will you pray and ask God to help you see yourself through His eyes?
Body image may be a difficult issue to address, but I hope these questions will aid you a bit as you work through the difficult issue of body image in your eating disorder recovery. Remember, you are not your body; you just live in your body. So do your best to focus on the real you.
To help you with the issue of the body image and seeing your identity in Christ, you might want the See Yourself through God’s Eyes Inside and Out lesson in the Christian Eating Disorder Recovery Course.
By Laurie Glass