Break your patterns

23 Jan

Those of us who have suffered with an ED tend to be very rigid. We’re regimented in what we do and how we do it. Everything is calculated. Nothing is spontaneous. We must do X at this time. We cannot eat more than Y. We are only allowed to eat at time Z. Our behaviours only serve to perpetuate these cognitive beliefs. So, what’s a girl to do?

Break your patterns.

Start mixing it up. You always eat breakfast at a specific time? How about eating it when your stomach says so, regardless of the time and your rules? Maybe it will be 13 minutes earlier. Maybe 30 minutes earlier. Just go with it.

 You “have” to run on the treadmill for 50 minutes? Try 45. Heck, really throw your rigid mind off, and stop after 43 minutes or some other ‘obscure’ number. Go crazy.

Greek yogurt is “always” your morning snack. Have an orange and some nuts. Or a piece of toast. “But I had toast for breakfast.” OMG, you’re gonna die.

You have to “always” brush your teeth before you wash your face? Wash your face first. #yolo

You “have” to set your alarm every morning for some rando time. 6:27am, anyone? Ya, stop that. Change it up. Set it for 6:29am. Trust me, you’ll be fine.

It may sound ridiculous to you to make such “minor, insignificant or trivial” changes to your routine. Well, the anxiety that may be elicited won’t likely feel minor. These changes will feel uncomfortable. Some may even say scary. But that’s the point of this whole recovery journey. Stepping outside of your comfort zone. Living in the zone isn’t workin’ too well, anyways.

These small changes will give you a taste of the freedom you could have. You’ll likely feel happy, and maybe even a little rebellious. 😉 That’s good! You can live this way all the time. And soon, these alterations to your schedule will not need to be planned. They can just happen naturally. Because you allow them to.

And when ED throws a little tantrum at the changes, and you think to yourself, “I could freak out so bad right now,” don’t. Panic won’t change a thing. You can sit there and get yourself in such a state, but 20 minutes from then, you’ll be in the exact same place. You just tell ED and that rigid voice (is it the same as ED?) to shut it. Soon, it won’t be bothering you often when you show it who’s boss.

Try it out and let me know how it goes! ❤

Much love and health,

Lauren xo


10 Responses to “Break your patterns”

  1. Alex @ therunwithin January 23, 2013 at 5:59 pm #

    this exactly. i know something that made a huge difference for me was when I was in treatment two years ago I made a list of all my ed fears. like even the crazy small ones (like not eating gummy vitamins) one by one I broke them. the physical crossing it off was what i needed to do. I loved the freedom i felt

    • thehomeostaticmindset January 24, 2013 at 2:20 pm #

      I think I need to do this…for real, actually. Thanks Alex ❤

      • Alex @ therunwithin January 24, 2013 at 2:35 pm #

        let me know if you do, I swear I did it with another friend of mine and it helped both of us kick some serious ed ass

      • thehomeostaticmindset January 24, 2013 at 4:15 pm #

        Just emailed you 😉

  2. pickyrunner January 23, 2013 at 10:35 pm #

    I love this list. I need to break my patterns too. I’m getting there but it’s definitely tough. For me, meal times is huge. I don’t HAVE to eat dinner at 6pm. I can eat a snack before dinner and not ruin my whole calorie allotment for the day.I still have a ways to go but I like this list.

    • thehomeostaticmindset January 24, 2013 at 2:21 pm #

      Definitely! It’s SO hard to step out of our rigidity, but when we do, it feels so freeing and exciting! You can do it 😀

  3. Chelsie S January 24, 2013 at 1:15 am #

    Today at work, they were offering free cake outside the cafeteria (they were promoting handwashing and wanted people to stop and take a look). I didn’t have a slice of cake, but I did take a piece of chocolate that they were also offering. Also, my co-worker shared some of her Welch’s fruit snacks. I was planning on taking one, she gave me at least 10. — It doesn’t take a lot. It just takes breaking the “no”s down slowly and surely. Accepting things outside of your comfort zone that you didn’t strictly plan. Such as, being okay with a change in restaurants one evening when the restaurant you were “prepared for” has a line up that’s far too long.
    I think that for me, I knew that my schedule and regimen and constantly eating the same thing every single day made sense — if I lost weight/didn’t gain weight the day before, and did the exact same thing the next day, then logically, I wouldn’t gain weight that day either. Or the one following.
    It’s the little things like this that are so easily overlooked during recovery. Sure, I can be eating fine, but if my co-worker is late to relieve me from work for break and I have to wait an extra 10min for snack, I get upset. (That being said, if they tell me an hour ahead of time that they’re going to be late, I’m totally fine).
    I’m not sure I can change my alarm time though … a multiple of 3 and never on the even quarter hour … yep. a bit insane, but I take comfort in it. The same way that I take comfort in only ever hitting same digits when I microwave (88 sec. 3:33min). It’s crazy to think of just how INSANE we are sometimes … or maybe that’s just me.

    • thehomeostaticmindset January 24, 2013 at 2:24 pm #

      WOW. That is a HUGE victory. 10 fruit snacks when I was expecting 1 would have You rock!!!!! I totally follow that “If I didn’t gain weight eating that yesterday, then I have to eat the same thing today” trap. This is definitely overlooked by so many recovery. Simply eating does NOT equal recovery. Recovery means SO much more than that. And don’t worry- we all have our little quirks. I would try to challenge yourself on your alarm time though. I promise- NOTHING bad will happen. The world will not end, and you and everyone you love will still be there 🙂

  4. Sarah February 2, 2013 at 12:50 pm #

    This is such a great post. I definitely fall a victim to habitual patterns. I always have to eat my omelet in the morning starting from the same side of the plate (uhhh, what?!), and double check that my alarm is set twice, and I always avoid going to social events with food (aka all of them). You make good points here -breaking habits/patterns is needed for recovery. Many people don’t look into this fully (doctors, ect) but it’s necessary. Just because I’m eating and training and weight “restored” means nothing if the behaviors aren’t changing.

    Thank you!

    • thehomeostaticmindset February 8, 2013 at 8:41 pm #

      I TOTALLY understand all of the crazy rules we have! You are completely right too about people not ‘getting it.’ They really, REALLY don’t. To most people, healthy weight= recovered. SO not true. Thanks for commenting ❤

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