Whenever I share with people my history with bulimia and recovering from it, I often get the question: “What was the one thing that healed you?” A psychiatrist? A psychologist? Medication? A support group? A program? Spiritual work?
To be honest, I’ve tried each of the above, and my answer is all of them.
Each one of the therapy approaches, spiritual guides, and general help that I’ve received, has taken me to where I am today. Each one of them prepared me to get to the next level. I’ve seen therapists who I never would have trusted years prior. However, then came the time for them to be exactly what I needed.
There is no perfect doctor or treatment. It is more about finding what suits you at the moment where you are at, and committing to it. The path for health and wellness must be enjoyable for it to be sustainable, albeit, commitment is of equal importance.
It took me a while to figure this out. I also started my path of seeking help thinking that I was going to find, that one thing that was going to heal me. Then I realized that: (1) it was a process and (2) what was most important was that I needed to commit to it. I needed to be flexible with the tools that I was learning, utilize different approaches that I was encountering. I needed to be flexible with myself.
What I learned from this was that our minds and souls require nourishment on a daily basis, just like our bodies do. We shouldn’t go days without eating (unless you are on some sort of crazy fast), the same way we shouldn’t go days without doing something to take care of our emotional wellbeing.
I truly believe that all of us need this type of routine nourishment. While suffering from an eating disorder, this realization was apparent for me. Nonetheless all of us are emotional and spiritual beings with minds and souls deserving of care.
In the present I don’t go to therapy every week like I have in the past. However, I know that I maintain an anxious personality and still need to find ways to counter the anxiety to help my brain and soul feel better. Everyday!
I know I’ve repeated it ten times by now, but I can’t stress enough the importance. Running is one of my soul foods at the moment. I try to run at least 5 days per week. I’ve found that running balances my mindset and gives me a good start for the day. When I stop running I can see how I’m less patient and significantly more irritable. Please don’t mistake me for an avid runner. I can’t run more than 3 miles at a time, but that is ok. It’s enough to take care of my anxiety and negative thoughts.
Perhaps a couple of years from now an alternative method of mind and soul nourishment will serve me better. We will see what my body and mind ask for.
I encourage you to explore whatever it is that nourishes your mind and soul. Try different things out. See what works best for the present moment, and stick with it. You are going to thank yourself for doing it.
I will continue to share with you what I have in my soul food kit and would love to hear what are the things that have worked for you.
Much love and Salud!