A few years ago, I was a completely different person than I am now. I was anxious, depressed, lost, confused, and completely un-confident in who I was. I struggled with an all-consuming eating disorder followed by almost unbearable OCD that completely took over my body and especially my mind. I am crying as I write this, because I honestly can’t believe I overcame all of those struggles and became the positive and confident person that I am now. I literally went from a girl who let her mind take over her whole life to a women who controls her mind and her life.
Both an eating disorder and OCD are things I wouldn’t wish on anyone, even my worst enemy. Imagine getting a panic attack and crying because your mind is telling you you “can’t” eat something that you so desperately want to eat? Imagine having constant intrusive thoughts 24/7 that don’t seem to go away no matter what you do? Imagine having your reality replaced with the constant nightmare in your head? Yeah- it really is as awful as it sounds.
I’ve been through it all, but surprisingly I wouldn’t change my journey for anything. If it wasn’t for everything I’ve gone through, I wouldn’t be doing what I’m doing now. I know it’s my life’s calling to help the millions of people out there struggling with the same thing; that is why I’m always so open and vulnerable with you guys. I know what it feels like to be alive but not really living, which is why I know that NO one deserves to ever feel that way. And I’m here to tell you that it IS possible to live your life fully.
It’s been a terribly long and hard journey, but it was SO worth it. I now have an incredibly healthy relationship with food, my mind is free of intrusive thoughts, I hardly ever feel anxious or depressed, and I am completely in love with every second of my life; I am living the life I’ve always wanted. If you are currently struggling with an eating disorder, any form of anxiety, or depression, just know that it is possible to get out of it the natural way- it’s by no means easy, but it is definitely possible.
Here are my top tips for getting your mental health back on track:
- Make sure your diet is as nutrient dense as possible- people really underestimate this one. Biochemically, it’s impossible to be our healthiest and happiest selves if we eat a crappy diet. The enzymes in our food control all of the biochemical processes that go on in our body, including those that effect our brain health. As well, 70% of our brain lies in our gut! If our gut is unhappy, we will be unhappy.
- Stay away from alcohol and caffeine- I suggest completely avoiding alcohol and caffeine for a while.
- Spend a crazy amount of time being alone- I know how hard it is to be alone when you have an unbearable amount of anxiety- trust me. But the only way to get over this anxiety for good is to face it head on. Spend time with yourself and get to know your thoughts. Learn why you think the way you do and what triggers all of these negative thoughts. Become friends with your demons in order to get rid of them.
- Cut out all toxic people and situations from your life- you will never be positive if you are surrounded by negativity.
- Practice yoga a few times a week and meditate daily- these are both life savors. I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for my weekly yoga practice and daily meditation.
- Learn everything you can about the mind- once you understand just how powerful the mind is, your life will change. Learn how to control your mind- don’t let it control you.
- Replace unnecessary T.V. shows with books that will nurture your mind and help you grow- I completely cut out T.V. when I was first healing. I read a ton of books on the mind which helped me learn more about my own mind and how to change my mindset.
- Take a break from social media- there is so much unnecessary junk on social media that it can make anyone depressed. If you find it hard to cut it out completely, just make sure to only follow positive pages and people that don’t trigger any negative feelings or thought patterns.
- Surround yourself with positivity- only let positive things into your life. I would even go so far as to say not to watch ANY negative movies or t.v. shows, not listen to any negative music, not to follow ANY negative people on social media, and to completely get away from anyone or anything negative.
- Spend more time in nature- this one is a given. Nature heals everything.
- See a therapist- there is such an absurd stigma surrounding therapists, but there is absolutely nothing wrong with seeing one. I’ve seen several during my 22 years of living and it has helped me immensely.
- Stay true to yourself- leave any jobs, relationships, or friendships that are bringing you down and that don’t reflect your highest truth. Only surround yourself with hobbies, jobs, relationships and friendships that truly make you happy.
- Cry- crying is always the best form of therapy.
- Be kind to yourself- you are only human and you are doing the best you can.
- Be patient- healing takes time and It will never be easy. You can’t just wake up one morning, take one yoga class, eat an apple and expect to be better. Your mind and body need CONSTANT nurturing to function at their best. Like I said, it’s a long and hard journey but it is the best one you will ever have.
Much love always,