Life without Anorexia

My motto is
'Dont let the sadness of your past & the fear of your future ruin the happiness of your present'

I am a generally happy girl who loves running, going to the gym and eating food!! Though my life has been very different.
I spent 5 years sick with anorexia nervosia & purging tendencies & over exercising. I was depressed and self harmed. I spent 2 years in different treatment centres.
After alot of struggles, lots of ups and downs, suicide attempts, tears, anxiety, panic and never thinking i would be healthy.
I am now declared healthy from anorexia nervosia.

I have been blogging for 4 years, and my whole journey is written in my posts. I now represent healthy and happiness. I want to show anyone struggling that it is possible to recover, no matter how hard it may seem.

I am happy and healthy and living my life. Going to school, meeting friends and trying to find myself in this world.

I write about my daily life, but also try to write posts about how it was when i was sick, advice and tips.
I am open and friendly, so dont be scared about writing a post or sending me an email at:


Monday, October 19, 2015

Distractions are helpful in recovery

One of the helpful things for me in recovery was distracations. People (and doctors/therapists etc) have different opinions on this. Some say that it is better to just sit with the anxiety, fear and guilt. To just sit and breathe and feel those feelings and know that it will pass and that each time you can just sit with those feelings until they pass you get stronger and realise that those feelings can't harm you, as long as you are strong enough to not react upon them. And i understand this, and i do think it is good... i mean you cant distract yourself forever, that is like running from the problem.You do need to face the anxiety, fear, guilt or other emotions/feelings you get. You need to know that you are strong enough to face them  and that they wont harm you, they are just feelings/emotions and it's when you react upon them that they cause harm and get stronger. Because you are strong enough to just sit with them and let them pass.

However, just sitting and breathing when you have tremendous guilt or anxiety, that is not an easy task and for me i had to have distractions. I could not sit still, even now i still need to do things with my hands mostly because of restlessness, but things such as colouring or scrolling through Tumblr are great distractions when i do feel anxiety creeping in. Distractions are also a healthy coping mechanism... i dont really know if i should call them distractions, because they are more a healthier coping mechanism. Such as colouring, that is a way of coping as well as distracting yourself from what you are feeling... it helps your thoughts to focus and you do something with your hands and you feel less likely to do something stupid and if you sit long enough you will realise that those strong feelings have passed. Other distractions are knitting, brodery (?), laying puzzles, drawing, making jewellery, doing something intricate, sowing etc Things that get you to focus on other things rather than your emotions are a good way of coping and distracting yourself and you can feel more at peace. You can feel both your body and mind relaxing, so i recommend finding something to help you cope.

For me i did most of those things mentioned above while at Mando. I had alot of guilt over the food eaten and the fact that i couldnt exercise. I felt guilt over my body, how my body changed, i felt angry and had alot of anxiety 99% of the time but i found that laying puzzles was my way of focusing on other things. I couldnt sit still and just watch series or films which was what was recommended, but i couldnt... i had to do other things because if i just sat still and watched a film or read then my mind would wander and i would end up panicking. So doing things with my hands was a way for me to cope and i can recommend it. Also when you are in treatment or just at home and need to eat and rest, then learning a new skill via youtube can be a good thing. You can emmerse yourself into new hobbies and try new things. Some girls at Mando liked to paint their nails and do intricate nail art or do hair styles and sometimes make up, though we werent allowed mirrors so you would only get 5 minutes or so to look in the mirror in the morning.

I think a balance of distractions/healthy coping mechanisms as well as just sitting with the emotions/feelings is good, i mean you cant distract yourself forever. There will be times when you cant distract yourself and you need to sit with those feelings - such as the first time going out to eat or staying away from home or on holiday etc then you need to be able to cope with the feelings. Then i recommend having a mantra or motto to keep repeating to yourself and maybe take sometime to just take deep breathes, even if you need to go to the bathroom and just sit down for a few moments to calm yourself. I had to do that plenty of times (though if you have had a problem with purging - then ask someone to follow with you to the bathroom just incase. Sometimes the strong emotions or guilt can make you do stupid things.

Find what works for you, whether just sitting and meditation or just sitting with your feelings or distractions. Know that you are stronger than the anxiety, fear and guilt and that those things wont kill you.

No exercise in recovery - replacement method

1 comment:

  1. thanks izzy. i struggle so much with feelings and not being able to just sit with it without it causing more anxiety and then worse using a behaviour to cope with the fact i am sitting too. i feel incredibly lazy just colouring or reading or watching tv i feel i need to be productive and that i should be working. i feel that everyone is judging me. so many people tell me to go and get a job. i wish i could but I've been trying to but now i just don't seem to be able to focus on my work and feel overwhelmed i don't know what to do. i just feel so lazy and overwhelmed by awful feelings i can't cope.