I spend a lot (and I mean a lot) of time writing about how to make the most of your recovery. We’ve talked about how to overcome the fear of eating more, how to transition into intuitive eating, and how to cope with weight gain. And don’t get me wrong – those things are dang important. But today’s post is to celebrate the progress you’ve already made. Today you get to give yourself the biggest pat on the back and “treat yo’self” for reaching these 7 recovery milestones. And always remember that as long as you’re fighting, you’re winning
Eating Disorder Recovery Milestone #1:
Milestone: You choose clothing based on how much you like the style / material / color not based on how it fits areas of your body you’re insecure about
What it means: You may not be totally in love with your body all the time, but you refuse to criticize it when a dress clings to soft bits and squishes. You realize that beautiful comes in so many more shapes and sizes than flat stomach and 00. You will continue to challenge negative body image by wearing what you like not what your eating disorder or body image says you can.
Milestone: You don’t automatically think of former fear foods as challenges.
What it means: Eating ice cream is just something you do when you’re craving it or when it looks good! Not every fried yum is a battle anymore. Food is becoming more and more mundane – and that’s a good thing.
Milestone: You enjoy being social again, and no longer need to convince yourself that you prefer to be alone all the time.
What it means: Gone are the days of making excuses to stay home so that you don’t have to be around “temptations” and away from your safe foods and rigorous exercise routine. When your friends are in the mood for a spontaneous road trip, your first emotion is excitement and you’re only worried about getting the time off of work or school, not how it will affect your diet.
Milestone: You realize that asking for help is a sign of strength, not weakness.
What it means: While you may have resented therapy or treatment before, you now feel incredibly grateful for it now. You know that struggling alone is unnecessary, and help in healing comes in many forms. You have a significant support group – whether it be with real life friends and family or a community on Instagram – that you can lean on when things get tough.
Milestone: You don’t avoid foods as “unnecessary” calories like condiments, juices, etc.
What it means: Mustard is great and all, but let’s be honest – using it as your only flavor profile really sucks. You pour garlic butter on your steak because it’s a special occasion, dip your french fries in ketchup because it tastes awesome, and order apple juice even though it’s not the healthiest drink option because you like it. You do these things without giving it much thought, even though it used to be all you could think about.
Milestone: You stop evaluating other women’s bodies
What it means: Your first thought when you see a female on the street is no longer envy or pride because your thighs are bigger or smaller than hers. Judging ladies based on their bodies and looks was something your disorder instructed you to do in order to make comparisons, but you no longer follow its commands. You don’t need to pick apart others’ appearances to feel secure with your own.
Milestone: You are excited for the future
What it means: Little by little, you have replaced the fear in your life with peace and the anxiety with joy. You know you are capable of overcoming adversity and deserving of love. The world is yours for the taking, and you can’t wait for what’s to come
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