Motivation in eating disorder recovery can be difficult to hold onto in moments of adversity. Here are 3 questions to ask yourself to stay motivated in recovery.
by: BALANCE Communications Coordinator Emily Costa
While the reasons we may develop and decide to recover look vastly different, there is one thing everyone who has walked the recovery path has had to have in common: motivation. Without motivation, progression in recovery can feel near to impossible.
The difficult part is that motivation in recovery can feel overwhelmingly present one moment and swiftly gone the next. When we lack motivation, the temptation to return to old ways can creep in. In the beginning of my own recovery journey, I felt like I had to hold onto my motivation for dear life.
A big shift for me personally was fully rooting my motivation in the things I wanted out of my recovery. I started to recognize that my eating disorder was a barrier between the life I was living and the life I wanted to live. In the moments I felt defeated or lost, I always returned to these 3 questions to check-in with myself:
1) What do I want in the future?
Figuring out what I wanted in the future was always a good way to replenish my motivation. In the beginning, I had my eyes set on goals like going back to college, graduating, having a job, being able to connect with my friends more authentically and not being ashamed of my eating disorder. Over time, I slowly accomplished these things one by one. It was motivation in itself to witness myself accomplish things I thought were once impossible.
2) Are those things possible with my eating disorder present?
After checking-in on what I want in the future, I always asked myself if those things would be possible with my eating disorder in the picture. The answer? 100% of the time: no. It is no secret that struggling with an eating disorder can quickly steal all of our energy from the things we truly care about. In order to live out our fullest life, there is no room for an eating disorder.
3) Who am I doing this for?
Along with thinking about what I wanted, it was just as important to remind myself who I was recovering for. Although it can be motivating to have loved ones and professionals help us stay on the road to recovery, we must ultimately want it for ourselves. A big turning point for me was understanding my motivation to recover had to come from within me, not from others or for others.
This post was written by BALANCE Communications Coordinator Emily Costa.