In my last post on holistic recovery, I mentioned that I’ve spent some time thinking about my favorite people and why they are my favorites, and that NONE of them are my favorites because of their appearance.
To elaborate on this, I did an exercise early in treatment about sources of self-worth and value. If featured in a pie chart, the “normal eater” tends to find their self-worth and value from many sources, such as family, friends, spiritual beliefs, career, hobbies, etc.
For a person with an eating disorder, the pie chart has one very large slice that takes up the vast majority of the pie: body image/weight/appearance. If there are any other sources, they are smushed into the remaining tiny piece of the pie.
So in this exercise on self-worth and value, I considered the qualities in my favorite people that make them so wonderful (no particular order):
- Generous – in many ways: time, money, energy, etc
- Thoughtful – remember things and then ask you about them later
- Confident – like themselves and who they are; know what they believe and are able to express it (without alienating people)
- Non-judgmental: sincerely kind; don’t speak badly of others, some don’t even seem to THINK badly of others; ready to give the benefit of the doubt and offer empathy
- Leaders (in a way that is natural and people are simply drawn to them)
- Live and speak their truth – typically via faith/spiritual beliefs
- Interesting – can talk about a lot of different kinds of things
- Funny/playful – know how to be silly and don’t take themselves too seriously
- Enjoy food and exercise authentically – “intuitive” eaters and movers
- Self-care – do things to respect themselves and take care of their body and mind
These are a few of my favorite things, and I aspire to develop these qualities in myself through this recovery process. I want a balanced pie chart for sources of my self-worth and value that come from these favorite things.