Eating Disorders and the Holidays

GAME PLAN - Have a game plan going into the days ahead. Know who your support people are and an "exit strategy" when you find yourself feeling overwhelmed. Let your support person know a"signal" of when it is time to leave.

 

STAY CONNECTED to your treatment team and make plans to touch base every few days with someone who knows your struggles, supports you and knows how to offer encouragement. Struggling is part of the recovery process.

 

ISOLATION IS THE ENEMY - If you are away from home look up local eating disorder or addiction support groups to keep up your motivation, get that extra support and connect with others who might be struggling.

 

SET A BOUNDARY - Try not to overbook your schedule to avoid making a stressful time even more stressful. Choose to attend events that will benefit you or set a limit of how many you will attend. This is a great time to use those assertiveness skills and set boundaries.

ASK FOR WHAT YOU NEED - Preparing for those holiday meals may help with the anxiety. You can ask your host in advance what will be served and you can come up with a plan. speak to your RD ahead of time to assess what you are ready to be flexible with at this stage.

PRACTICE AWARENESS - Be aware of your surroundings and what might trigger you to overeat or engage in behaviors. It might be the food or the company. Awareness skills allows us to make better choices and to practice our new our skills.

BE PREPARED - Remember those skills and tools. Choose some of your go to strategies during this time. Breathing, playing with the kids at the holiday party, taking a walk, crafts and connecting to your support.

MAKE ME TIME - This is also your vacation! Set obligated you time for relaxation, contemplation, connecting to friends and family, spiritual renewal and gratitude.

ALLOW YOURSELF TO HEAL - If you are in treatment this year keep in that it is just for this year. Your health has to come first! Take this time to focus on you and your recovery. There will be future holidays that you can enjoy with friends and family when you are feeling stronger.