One of the most difficult things for anyone struggling with an eating disorder, self-harm, or any other mental illness is staying positive during recovery. Optimism is extremely important to recovery; if you do not think that you are going to recover, then you wont. You need to be positive and have a good outlook about recovery. While I have not recovered yet, I’m getting closer and closer with every attempt at recovery. Here are some things that have helped me stay positive:
1. Remind yourself why you want to recover.
2. Reward yourself for little milestones.
3. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you have a slip up; it happens to the best of us.
4. Make yourself a “crisis box” or a “happy box” and fill it with things that make you happy (books, candles, quotes, pictures, etc.) so that you have something to do when you are feeling down.
5. Write down your feelings in a journal rather than keeping everything inside.
6. If you cannot think of a reason to recover for yourself, think of why your loved ones want you to recover.
7. Think about everything you have lost to your illness and everything you will gain from recovery (and I don’t mean weight)
8. Talk to someone when you are feeling like giving up (ie. family, friends, your therapist, a teacher, a guidance counselor, etc.).
9. Do something that you enjoy everyday for no reason other than to make yourself happy (ie. spend some time on a hobby that you really enjoy).
10. Focus on yourself and your own recovery. It can be hard enough to recover when you are dealing with your own issues, try not to take on the burden of everyone else’s problems as well. You might end up setting yourself up for failure.
I hope that these points will help some of you with your recovery as they have helped me.
Stay strong; stay positive. You can do this. Recovery IS possible.