Hi guys! I’m so excited and honored to be writing for Cayanne’s blog today. Cayanne is such an amazing girl and is full of strength and fearlessness. She is a blogger who I admire greatly!
For those of you who don’t know me or read my blog, my name is Lyss and I’m a blogger over at www.blissful-lyss.com. I talk a lot about balance with food and exercise, mental health, and I share snippets of my life as a college student. I am currently a sophomore in college studying psychology and I hope to be a therapist one-day specializing in eating disorders, depression, and anxiety.
Living On A College Campus: Fat Talk and Fear in the Dining Hall
Transitioning from living at home to living on a college campus was definitely not an easy one. Girls talking so poorly about themselves was the norm, and soon I fell into this trend of talking poorly about myself as well. The constant talk of the freshman 15 is something you can’t escape, and the dining hall can be a scary place and a challenge to learn how to navigate.
After my first semester of college, I felt more like myself again- positive, confident, and more strong in what I believe in. I was able to snap out of the cycle of negative self-talk and snapped myself back into the cycle of body love and acceptance. I was able to find a balance with food, exercise, my social life, and school. It wasn’t easy and it isn’t easy to find this balance as a college student, but it is possible. It is 100% possible to remain ED behavior free while living on a college campus.
Stay Grounded In Your Journey, Not Hers
One thing that helped me tremendously in staying ED behavior free was focusing on myself and what I need. When I compare what I eat to what someone else eats, my thought process will definitely not be a healthy one. We have all been stuck in the trap of “she ate less than me at this meal” or “I don’t know if I should get dessert because he didn’t” and all those detrimental thoughts that do nothing but pull us down. Focusing on our own individual needs and honoring them is so helpful in remaining ED behavior free.
When I began to realize that just because other people talk poorly about themselves doesn’t mean I have to, I began to feel so much more positive about myself and my body. It is so easy to fall into this trap of talking poorly about ourselves, because everyone does it. Whether it’s before going out to a party and the small comments like “my stomach looks big in this crop top” or “I need to go to the gym in order to wear this,” this type of talk is everywhere. You can’t escape it, but you can change how you react to it. Instead of falling victim to it, stand strong in your own beliefs. When people talk poorly about themselves, I always reassure them that they are beautiful and that they don’t need to change anything about their body. If that doesn’t work, the next best thing to do is just block out this talk. Don’t engage in these conversations or continue to add to them. Just wait until they are over. And don’t feel like just because one person says they don’t like their body or the way they look that you have to say that too. Loving ourselves is not selfish. Loving our bodies and embracing them for what they are is not being cocky in any way, shape, or form.
The Gym Craze & Being Social
Exercise. Another tricky thing in college. You’ll hear people saying that they need to go to the gym more, that they’ll need to workout extra harder after a certain meal, and you have those people that just won’t shut up about how much they did at they gym. Again, focus on yourself. Recognize what you need, and don’t compare how much you do at the gym to your roommate or your best friend. You know what’s best for you. Don’t lose sight of that.
Finding a balance with a social life in college can be quite the challenge too. But a social life is something we all truly need for our mental sanity. People are going to drink, and its something you can’t hide from. If you do choose to drink, that is okay! And if you don’t choose to drink, that is okay too! Remember that liquid calories will not kill you. Finding a balance with drinking has helped me so much. Another important thing: indulging in liquid calories does not mean you should eat less throughout the day. You still need to eat the exact same throughout the day- your body needs that fuel. Your body won’t change overnight just because you have some liquid calories. That isn’t physically possible.
Living on a college campus is so much fun, and I wouldn’t trade this experience for the world. I get to be surrounded by my best friends 24/7 and living on my own has taught me so much about myself. Yes, living on a college campus does present itself with some different challenges and obstacles; but overcoming these and staying healthy as well as completely ED behavior free IS possible!
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