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How To Deal With People With Eating Disorder

How To Deal With People With Eating Disorder

By definition, eating disorders are about unhealthy actions associated with food. Well, it depends. The signs surely focus on food. Interestingly, though, eating disorders are not truly about food in any way. It’s about emotional causes, underlying psychological fluctuations and environmental elements that are displayed outwardly as an eating disorder. People handle the stresses of life and the fact that they are unable to approve of themselves by making food a crutch.

Recognizing the signs of an eating disorder

Before considering the psychological roots, let’s start by thinking about the food related signs of eating disorders. First, disordered eating can be viewed as an extreme importance of control over food intake, which leads to compensatory actions such as restricting, purging or in the event binge cycles, of obsessive overeating.

Next, eating disorder signs can sometimes include fat, that is only in their imagination centered problems. Which lead to self-misery or compensatory behaviors. For example they may over-exercise, have chronic laxative abuse or insulin treatment.

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Third, eating disorders often replicate stringent dietary behaviors such as consuming only raw greens or removing beef, fatty foods and high carbohydrate foods, etc.

Fourth, eating issues include body image distortions in a way that patients view themselves, this is not reality. They see themselves as fat when in fact they may be extremely thin. They may think their legs are too big, their belly is too fat or their arms are too flabby.

An eating disorder is just the tip of the iceberg

Despite these very particular food-related obsessions, it’s a mistake to consider these ailments to be about food. In reality, the disordered eating symptom basically demonstrates the hint of the iceberg that implies a much deeper mental challenge. If a person feels they have control over food  this may be their way of coping with their mental issues, this is not a healthier way to handle anything.

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Different damaging coping methods could also have already been employed including substance abuse, sexually acting-out, disordered conduct, aggressive or chaotic behavior, etc. The decision of control over food is a subconscious choice to cope with overwhelming emotions or tense circumstances which might be currently happening in their life.

Know the causes of eating disorders

In a variety of ways, our bodies speak in metaphors. In eating disorder symptoms this kind of body conversation regarding mental disturbances is beautifully shown.

For example, lots of people who suffer from Anorexia convey a need to “disappear” due to inadequate self-esteem or pressures of the media to be perfect. Our society creates an image of beauty that is unrealistic but many people with anorexia or bulimia believe this a reality they must attain. They are becoming uncomfortably and unrealistically skinny. They feel they will be cultural unacceptable if they are fat.

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People affected by Bulimia often record the requirement to “clear themselves” because it relates to the frequent connection with extreme or overwhelming feelings. Hence, the act of purging delivers momentary reduction towards the psychological storm within.

Folks struggling with Binge-Eating Disorder have the desire to cover or protect themselves from others and the world around them. It’s not uncommon for them been sexually abused and to have an unconscious need to protect themselves from this happening again.

Why teenagers might have eating disorders

Maturational worries might be the cause of eating disorder in pre-pubescent, fresh adolescents and youngsters. As an example, teenagers who are fearful to become an adult may unconsciously make an effort to delay the onset of adolescence and also the associated extra sexual traits (i.e., breast development, curvy hips, menses) by lowering body fat or through restriction, avoid the desired fat arrangement from accumulating that would induce menses.

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Thus, your body maintains purpose, the appearance and purpose of the prepubescent child. The individual thinks by appearing to be immature or an adolescent allows them to get guidance and continued care from their parents. Or if they have parents who are going through a divorce they may feel if they stay young then their parents may wait until they are more mature before they divorce.

Understand their actual need

In summary, when associating with individuals who have problems with an eating disorder, look beyond the food-related symptoms.  Look at their entire situation and at what emotional needs are present. Whether you’re a parent, partner, family member or friend, they need assistance in establishing better coping skills, facing their doubts, socially relating in a wholesome approach and growing their power to communicate their needs better.

To think it is only about food (e.g., saying, “Why won’t you just eat?”) isn’t just unhelpful, but also an insult to their actual need.

Featured photo credit: jose assenco/http://www.freeimages.com via freeimages.com

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Last Updated on November 18, 2020

I’m Feeling Bored: 10 Ways to Conquer Boredom (and Busyness)

I’m Feeling Bored: 10 Ways to Conquer Boredom (and Busyness)

If you’re saying “I’m feeling bored,” it’s important to realize that boredom and feeling too busy are the same problem. Some people claim I’m being too ambitious trying to strike down chronic boredom and busyness at the same time. I’d argue that the only way to take them out is simultaneously.

The problem stems from how you manage your attention. Both boredom and busyness stem from feeling there is a lack of quality in how you focus your attention.

Boredom is feeling that there are too few high-quality ways to spend attention. Busyness is forced boredom. This means that you feel there are high quality ways to spend attention, but your attention is being stolen from you before you can use it.

I’m Feeling Bored: It’s in Your Mind

Feelings of boredom and busyness are subjective. You can’t look out in the world and claim it is busy or boring. To say these feelings are subjective is obvious, but that misses a key point. The real problem is quality.

Being engaged, neither busy or bored, happens when your attention is focused on high-quality activities.

You can probably remember times when you were completely engaged. This could have been working on a project you were passionate about, spending time with your family, sky diving or vacationing under the sun. Why were you engaged in these moments and not in others?

A likely reason was because those experiences had a higher quality. They allowed you to enter into an immersive flow state, in which your entire consciousness was devoted to the activity.[1]

In the best cases your entire reality revolves around what you are doing. You’ll understand what I mean if you’ve read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (which, I must admit, inspired most of these ideas).

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Improving the Quality of Your Activities

So how do you improve quality in your experiences when you’re saying “I’m feeling bored”? I believe there are two major ways you can do it: externally and internally. If you are chronically busy (and actively disliking the busyness) or bored, then you’ll need to tackle external and internal factors that contribute to these negative feelings.

Here are some ways to consider improving quality in your experiences:

Externally

1. Plan Ahead

Schedule your life to ensure there aren’t huge gaps or work overflows later. This can mean scheduling high-quality experiences if you find yourself frequently bored. It can also mean dividing large projects if you find yourself chronically busy.

  • Plan weekend activities for next month now. This not only gives you something to look forward to, but it also forces you to stay productive instead of just busy.
  • Map out what is placing demands on your time. Can you consolidate all your “busy work” (such as responding to emails) into one block of time instead of allowing it to cause constant interruptions in your day?

2. Win-Win

If you must perform an activity you think has low quality, you’re going to feel bored. Find ways to reorganize your life so that jobs, chores, and duties can become interesting, high-quality experiences.

Turn mind-numbing chores into opportunities for growth and learning. For example, listen to an audio book or lecture on the commute to work or while you’re cleaning your house.

3. Prioritize

If you don’t manage time, you’ll never have enough of it. There are always more things to do than you have time for. Get your values straight so that the highest priorities are handled first and your life doesn’t get overtaken by the unimportant.

Set a vision for your life, and determine how everything you do either contributes or detracts from that vision. Chances are, the things that don’t align with your vision are some of the same things that bore you. After you identify low-priority activities, you can try to make them more meaningful, or you can find ways to eliminate them.

4. Put Quality of Experience First

It is easy to get caught up in external goals that don’t fulfill their promises. Focus on goals that will give you a greater quality, not just a bigger paycheck or more status to brag about.

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Set SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound) goals that align with your life’s vision.[2]

5. Escape the Motions

Habits are a part of your life, but don’t let them become the only thing. Break out of your patterns if they aren’t giving you what you need. Instead of staying in, go out and meet new people on a Friday night. Just do something to get away from doing the same old thing.

Schedule times to break from your routines. I thrive on having a routine most days, but I also give myself opportunities to break from sameness.

Say “yes” to trying something new. Nothing spices up your day like trying something new.

Internally

Most of the ways to improve your quality of experience and conquer boredom are internal. Remember, it’s not just what you do, but also how you do it.

1. Build an Inner World

I’m not suggesting you create a complete rift between yourself and reality when you find yourself thinking “I’m feeling bored,” but also realize that if you can’t find quality in your immediate surroundings, you can find it within yourself.

Solving internal problems, reviewing knowledge, coming up with new ideas, creating stories, or even planning for the future are all areas you can explore in the mind without any external stimuli.

Use “boring” moments as opportunities to brainstorm. It’s a lot easier to cope with a humdrum reality if you’re able to use the time to explore possibilities within your mind.

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If you’re really at a loss, you can imagine a story about 2-3 of the people and objects in your vicinity. This is a great way to exercise your creativity and sharpen your observation skills.

2. Seek Quality in the Now

Try starting small with some simple questions. What are you doing right now? What can you find that has value for you? Seeking quality right now allows you to find it even if your environment is bare or overloaded.

Activities like waiting in line can be turned into moments of self-reflection or times to remind yourself of your vision.

3. Don’t Resist

Busyness and boredom could also be described as symptoms of resisting what is. Fully accepting whatever situation you are in and making the most of it is one way to conquer feeling bored.

Resistance is something that can’t be done half-way. Either completely push away and seek quality elsewhere, or accept your surroundings and find it here.

4. Unchain Yourself

A lot of mental unease is caused because you feel forced to do something. You have to go to work, study for your test, do this or that. Realize that you don’t have to do anything, just accept different results. Freedom is in your mind.

Weigh whether the activity causing your discomfort is essential or expendable. For example, paying your bills is non-negotiable, but you can opt to live a more modest lifestyle or actively search for a job you enjoy.

Use a mantra to remind yourself of your freedom. “I am free” and “I have the power to change my circumstances” can reinforce the notion that you have choices.

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5. Stop

Boredom and feeling overloaded are both patterns. They are mental spirals you run on yourself that loop back on each other. If you just interrupt yourself for a few minutes and think more deeply about the problem, you can often come up with a good answer independent of these suggestions.

Meditate your way out of boredom. Sometimes boredom and busyness are caused by feeling disconnected from what you are doing. Use meditation to ground yourself in the present.

You can learn how to meditate here.

Take up a gratitude practice. Whenever you’re feeling too bored or too busy, stop to think about all the things that are going well. Being able to simply say, “I got out of bed this morning,” and “I have food to eat,” help you take stock of your blessings.

The Bottom Line

As boredom and busyness arise from the same source, the same strategies can be used to tackle them and find a sweet spot of a balanced mindset. Find high-quality activities when you start saying “I’m feeling bored,” and you’ll be amazed at how quickly you can turn things around.

More Tips on Tackling Boredom

Featured photo credit: Siddharth Bhogra via unsplash.com

Reference

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