Posts tagged stress.
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I’m doing a LIVE Broadcast on Sunday 9/30 12pm pacific. I hope you will tune in. I’ll be posting updates as it gets closer.
SOOOO EXCITED! :)
This week’s video is about sexual desire, libido and how our ED can affect it. I had to do some research on this because I had my assumptions, but I wanted to know what the data states. Just so you know, 45-50% of those suffering with AN (anorexia nervosa) and 35-40% of those suffering from bulimia nervosa, EDNOS, and binge eating disorder struggle with the loss of or decrease in sexual desire. So you are not alone in your feelings about this. Infertility is a very common side effect of having an ED and because our bodies do not have to reproduce, it can get rid of our ability to in order to keep other things functioning properly.
Another issue that I want to address is romantic relationships, and how they can suffer from our ED as well. One of the most important things in any relationship is communication. If we do not talk to our friends or loved ones honestly about what is going on with us, than we really cannot have a healthy and stable relationship. I know that it is really hard and can be completely overwhelming, but just work on sharing a little bit of information at a time. Now, we are only doing this if we like the person, think they are worth getting to know, and perhaps trustworthy. Right? So just start little by little and don’t feel pressure to dump all of that information on them at once, but do be honest. For example, if something comes up and all you can think about is how that interferes with your appointment with your dietitian, just tell them you have an appointment that day and if you want, tell them that you see a dietitian. Once you have reached your comfort level for sharing, just say that you don’t feel like talking about it now, but you can talk more later. Leave it at that. But let’s all work together to be more honest and open about what is going and so that we can have people in our lives who we can lean on when we need that extra support. Also, don’t forget to check out my free workbook available on KatiMorton.com and let’s keep working together towards a Healthy Mind and a Healthy Body!!
This week’s video is to address many of the questions and concerns that I hear every day from all of you. That question is “why does it feel so bad when we finally start to try and get better?” To be honest, it is completely normal. Why is that? It is because we have been stuffing things and numbing out from things for a long time, and each one of those experiences needs to be worked through. It takes time. It can be overwhelming, and we will want to stop and just go back to the way it was, but know that if we can push over this hump it will be worth it. Just try to remind yourself that recovery is a process, it is NOT perfection. We will have days when we go right back to our ED and act out, but then we will have days when we feel strong and we push through our meals and snacks. So be patient with yourself and your recovery.
I always recommend that people start by working on my free workbook. By gathering information about our ED, when it started, what triggers it, and what purpose it serves, we can come up with better tools to fight the urges when they come. So check that out (on my website katimorton.com) and let’s keep working hard to push through our recovery towards a Healthy Mind and a Healthy Body.
Need Energy?? Try Breath of Fire! - Breathing Exercise #2 (by KatiMorton)
This video is another breathing technique. I know that usually I give you relaxing ones, but I realized that many of us actually need energy during our day and so I thought this one could be helpful too! This technique is one that is used in yoga a lot and is called the breath of fire. I know it sounds really intense, but I promise it is not too hard:)
The reason that this works to invigorate our bodies is because we are pushing out all of our stale air and bringing in fresh oxygen. This can help our bodies push our any old and less oxygenated blood that could have accumulated and replacing it with oxygen rich blood. Now this technique is not something that cannot be done when others are around because it is a bit noisy, but it does only take 15 seconds. So let’s step away for a bit and give it a try!!
This week’s video talks about men and eating disorders. I know that many of us may think that an ED is an ED whether you are a man or a woman, and you are right. However, after doing some research, I found that being a man with an ED can be increasingly difficult. First of all, I would like to address the stigma that any man who has an ED is gay. I do know that the research shows the prevalence of EDs in the gay community is on the rise, but one has nothing to do with another. Our sexual preference has nothing to do with our mental health, period. Secondly, because 90% of EDs occur in women, it goes undiagnosed in men for long periods of time. We can go to the doctor hoping to get help and instead of thinking about what our blood work or complaints could really mean, they assume it is something else. The main reason for this is because men use their EDs to look like various body types. Some men want to be thin, maybe like Mick Jagger and others want to be bulked up like an Arnold Schwarzenegger. Others want to be somewhere in the middle like David Beckham. Since they may not show the same symptoms or even talk about their desire to look one certain way, many therapists and doctors over look it, and miss the issue entirely.
I am hoping that by creating this video we can begin talking about EDs with regard to all people who suffer. Everyone is different. Everyone’s ED is different and everyone deserves to get the help they need. So let’s talk about it! Let’s break through the stigma! EDs happen to all types of people, and we can all recover:) So let’s keep working together as we work towards a healthy mind and a healthy body.
This week’s video comes from a question I received on YouTube. The question had to do with how the fear of abandonment feeds as well as how it is related to our EDs. The first thing I want to acknowledge is that many people who have an ED also have Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). BPD is a disorder that is usually characterized by instability in interpersonal relationships, difficulty with self-image as well as impulsivity. After reading that you can probably see why many people with ED’s also have BPD. What I would like to talk about in this particular video is why we have such a fear of abandonment and how we can deal with this fear in a more constructive way.
There are often two ways that we act out due to our fear of abandonment. We will either emotionally black mail the person we are in a relationship with to force them to stay. Or we will leave them before they can leave us. When we emotionally black mail someone, it is almost like we are threatening them. We will say things like “if you leave I will kill myself,” or “I will start cutting again if you leave me,” etc. When they come running back to us, or say that they have changed their minds, we have blackmailed them into staying. This can be horrible for any relationship, because we know that they would have left and probably still want to, which can feed our fear even more. The second way we deal is by running from them first. This is usually in romantic relationships, but I have had many clients who have run away from friendships as well. We feel that we would rather know when the leaving will happen and so we push people away and move onto the next relationship. In general, we don’t really like being alone so it should be easy for you to notice if you tend to run away.
So what do we do about it? Well, the first thing I would like you to do is to make a list of the people who are important to you. I want you to write down why they are important and whether you fear they will leave you or not. Through this journaling you will be able play out your fears without acting on them. Think of this as a safe place to talk about this. The second thing I would like you to do is to keep in touch with those people in your life that are important to you. I know we tend to isolate and withdraw from them when we actually want their love and support. So reach out, keep talking about it and let me know how it goes. Let’s keep working towards a healthy mind and a healthy body.
Today’s video is about anger. I know you are probably wondering why I chose to do a video about anger and the reason is because many of us run from this emotion. I know that for many of the clients that I have worked with over the years, they never stand up for themselves or feel able to confront someone who has hurt them. They for some reason feel that they are not worthy or do not deserve to be anger or express that anger to the person who caused it. They even turn their anger in on themselves believing that they do not have a right to feel the way that they do. It is because of this uncomfortability with even the slightest feelings of anger that I am addressing it today.
The first thing I want you to notice is how anger feels in your body. You know your body. Your throat, your hands, your jaw etc. Think about how it feels when you get angry. What do you do to suppress it? When do you know that you cannot suppress it and you are going to explode? What signs does your body give you? Think about all of these things and go grab some craft supplies. You won’t need much, just some paper, an old magazine, markers and/or crayons.
I first want you to color that entire paper red. Let the feelings of anger pulse through your hands as you color. See what it feels like to harness the feeling and use it to do something constructive. Once the entire sheet is colored red, I want you to fill it with words and cut out pieces of things that make you angry. The reason this is a great way to start exploring this emotion is because you do not have to talk to anyone about it. You just get to see what it feels like to be angry and to exert that feeling through constructive motion.
Another way to begin experiencing anger on a more healthy level is to kick a ball, or throw a ball into a cement wall. That can help you express your anger through another motion. You have to kind of figure out what works best for you, but just make sure that you are not damaging anything by doing any of these activities.
You can also listen to angry music while doing this. Put your head phones on and really allow yourself to feel anger and notice how your body responds. If you cannot get outside, maybe scream into a pillow or throw a stuffed animal around. That can give you the same satisfaction as kicking a ball in a much more inside friendly way.
The last option is to write it out. Maybe write some mean letters, that you never send, to people who have angered or hurt you. Be honest! Be mean! Express what you are truly feeling without any worry that someone may read it later. This can really help you begin to see why you are in fact angry and in a way justify the emotion for you that you have had so much trouble trusting.
I hope that at least one of these tips helps you healthfully express your anger and allow you to begin turning that anger outward appropriately instead of inward and harming ourselves more. Leave your comments below and do not forget to subscribe to my channel so that when I post my next video you are notified. So let’s continue to work together as we move towards a healthy mind and a healthy body.
Suicide Prevention - Healthy Mind, Healthy Body (by KatiMorton)
This week’s video touches on something that can be very scary to talk about, suicide. The reason that I wanted to take the time to talk about this topic is because I have heard from many of you that either you have had suicidal thoughts or you know someone who is. Due to the way I was trained I believe that the worst thing I could do would be to not talk about it. It is my belief that the more we talk about things, the less power it has over us. That is why I created my site and these videos; to increase the amount of positive “talk” our there, because our ED’s thrive in isolation and silence.
First I want to address what to do if you yourself are having thoughts of suicide. Obviously, based on what I just said, the first thing to do would be to contact someone you trust. This could be a best friend, a therapist, a parent, whoever. Just make sure that they are supportive and loving and they have a great history of acting that way with you. You do not need to dump all of your thoughts and concerns right away, it is okay to just let them know you have been struggling and having a hard time motivating yourself to do anything to help. Or whatever it is you are feeling, but do not feel like you have to dump all of your suicidal thoughts on them at once. What we are working to create with this is a safe place to talk about your struggles and to get some support. You can also create videos and post them on my site or create your own youtube channel and post them there. Also, journaling can be a great tool to help us really think about what it going on and maybe get some insight into why we are feeling the way we are. If we can figure that out, we will be better armed to deal with the thoughts the next time around.
Secondly I want to discuss what to do if someone you know is having suicidal thoughts and they told you about it. Well first I would refer them to a hotline or a teen help line. These can differ depending on where you live, but I would just search for the ones in your area and have them written down somewhere so that you have them in a crisis. After giving them that information I would be supportive and caring, but be cautious of getting wrapped up in it. Just like we talked about last week, we need to protect ourselves and our recovery. You can still be supportive and loving, but you don’t want to get to so wrapped up in it that we ourselves begin to struggle. You can also let me know about it. I would be more than happy to help out. I will not post anything publically or anything, but I will do my best to contact them privately and offer some support and understanding.
Obviously there is a lot more to talk about when it comes to dealing with suicide and suicidal thoughts, but these are just some helpful tips so that if something happens, we have a plan and can work together to continue building this community working towards a healthy mind and a healthy body.
I created this video as a follow up from the video I posted last week because I got some great questions that I felt needed to be addressed. The first being, what is a boundary? Well, a boundary, by definition is a dividing line that separates one are from another. In a similar way, we use the term boundary to describe what limits and rules we apply to our relationships so that we can better determine what is tolerable and what is not. The second question I got was, why do we have boundaries? We have boundaries in our relationships to help protect ourselves and those around us. We want to create a loving and warm relationship for both parties, therefore, we need some rules so that someone doesn’t get their feelings hurt or feel overwhelmed by the other.
Also, there was a question about when to create boundaries.Do we do them proactively or reactively?? Meaning, do we do it as a response to something someone has done to us, or do we create them before any boundary has been crossed? You can do it either way, and for now you may find yourself creating more reactive boundaries because this is new and you may only know when one has been crossed. It is my goal that we get better at recognizing when we feel our boundaries have been crossed and are better able to create proactive boundaries.
As always, please subscribe to my channel so that when I post any new information, you know about it, and please comment below or leave your questions. let’s continue working towards a healthy mind, healthy body.
This video is kind of a follow up to my Toxic Friends Video. Based on the Structural Family Therapy, there are three types of family boundaries. Before I get into the three types, I want to make sure you know that I am not just applying these boundaries to family. I want you to think about all of your interpersonal relationships and evaluate what kind of boundaries you have with each of those people.
With that said, the three types of boundaries are clear, rigid, and diffuse. A clear boundary is one that is firm yet flexible. That means that you know what you share and do not share with this person, but if the circumstances change, you may have to change the boundary. An example of this would be that I may never talk to my boss about my family, but when my grandmother passes away I will have to share that because it now effects my work.
A rigid boundary is one that does not allow much communication at all. It can actually push people so far away that we become disengaged with one another. It is my thought, that our ED’s try to force these boundaries onto everyone we were ever in a relationship with because it helps the ED keep it’s secrets. So this boundary is not warm nor does it help build relationships.
The last type is diffuse, and this is the “non-boundary.” I call this type the “small town syndrome” meaning that everyone knows everything about each other. These are the relationships that usually leave us drained. These tend to also be the “toxic” type that we need to distance ourselves from. In all my time working with eating disorders, I find that although we create rigid boundaries with others, we are in relationships with people who have diffuse boundaries. Odd huh? They share everything and we share nothing. The thing about this that is toxic, is that they usually dump too much emotional baggage on us and we either shut down or use our ED to deal with it.
What I would like you to do is to grab your journal and take stock of you most interactive relationships and what kind of boundaries are in that relationship. I would encourage you to begin setting clear boundaries with those around you. An example of this would be to tell that diffuse, or toxic friend that you cannot talk to her after 9pm because you find yourself on the phone too late and then cannot sleep because your mind is racing with her issues (you don’t have to say all of that but you get the idea;) So you set some boundaries as to when you are available, and although at first you will feel bad for not always being there, you will begin to feel more free and happier about the relationships you are in.
So keep me posted and make sure to subscribe to my channel and comment and let’s continue working towards a Healthy Mind, Healthy Body.
I created this video due to some questions I got from a follower of mine on Twitter. She was having trouble getting treatment for her eating disorder due to lack of funds. The first tip that I offer is simply asking your therapist, dietitian or really anyone in your treatment team, if they work on a sliding scale. To a clinician this means that you cannot afford the regular rate and would like to know if they will work with you. I almost always work with my clients on cost because I know how expensive treatment can be. I would recommend asking this before you make an appointment because you do not want to get into a situation where you actually owe them more than you can afford.
The second tip is for a higher level of care. Most people do not know that treatment facilities offer sponsorship for some patients each year. It could be to get a tax write off, or just out of the kindness of their hearts, but all you have to do is ask. If you have some insurance coverage, but it will leave you with a high out of pocket cost, ask if they will help. Many people do not know that you can just ask for it and they may give it to you. You’ve got nothing to lose:)
The last tip is to get free treatment online. You are watching my video and reading my information. Guess what?? It’s free!! I know you have the option and often times the urge to get onto an unhealthy site but you can choose to make the web a place where you get your free treatment. There is that split second where you have the choice to either click on an unhealthy site or on someone who posts recovery focused material. Take a breath. And try to choose the recovery one. I know that you won’t be able to resist it every time, but hopefully we can lessen the garbage that we put into our minds, and instead put in healthy, body loving information to help us on our path to recovery.
I hope this was helpful, and feel free to ask any questions you have. I love to get your feedback and questions!! Some of the websites I recommend are something-fishy.com and edreferral.com for finding therapists and other clinicians who specialize in eating disorders. People I would subscribe to on youtube are DearNicoleRae, cavernchick, anorexiaRecovery, and amindmedia. Hopefully that will help lower the amount of “garbage” we put into our brains every day. If you have other websites and people who help you, let me know and post it!!