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Podcast: When I Use My Tools, They Work

When I Use My Tools, They Work

Listen to the Podcast  or if you prefer the written version, Read the Archived Article.

I’ve posted a snippet of the article here for you to read. Just click on the link to read or listen to more:

“When I use my tools, they work! Things are easier, more peaceful. I just don’t feel the need to use food to cope when I use my tools.”

I hear this a lot from clients. And it’s true.

However, from clients who are a little new with the process, there is usually a “…but” attached to the end of it and the rest of the statement sounds something like, “…it’s just so hard to use my tools.” Or “….it takes too long and I don’t have the time or energy to do anything other than eat.”  Or even “….what if they stop working? I need to hang on to my use of food to cope just in case my new tools stop working.”

Okay, for starters, under what circumstances could increased awareness and compassion for yourself and others ever stop working for anything? They are the key to the happiness in every single happy person. That last statement, “…what if they stop working…” if you’ve ever thought it, is a great indicator that your Drill Sgt. is in charge of your healing in that moment and not your adult self.  The all-or-nothing thinking; The doubt; The belief that coping with food actually helps you in any way and would be a good thing to hold on to are all indicators that your mind has kicked into one of the basic characteristics of the Drill Sgt.: Learned Helplessness.

In essence you’re saying to yourself “I don’t really think anything but food can make me “feel better” and I don’t really think I can learn to resolve my underlying stressors so I have to keep my numbing tactics at the ready.”

If that’s the mindset that you are bringing to this process – which it is – because no one who uses food to cope ever does so from any place other than learned helplessness – this process can feel hard and like it takes a long time. My role in your life is to shift you out of that stuck, all-or-nothing headspace asap and get you into a possibilities mindset where you genuinely realize the many options in each situation and you don’t default into that stuck, sinking feeling that makes you believe the only solution is to restrict, or binge, or purge.

Common learned helplessness statements sound like this:

  1. I can’t do anything about X;
  2. Life will always be like Y;
  3. I will always be stuck/lonely/unhappy/insecure;
  4. Change is too hard;
  5. It’s too overwhelming;
  6. There’s too much to do;
  7. Others will be upset with me;
  8. I don’t even know where to begin;
  9. I can’t!!

When you think of not using food to cope and you feel sad and scared and disappointed, it’s only because the part of you that is thinking about using food to cope in that moment is the part of you that believes that you can not truly feel peaceful and nurtured and safe and comforted without food. Thus it imagines that what’s really going to happen when you use your tools instead of eating is that you’ll still feel anxious and overwhelmed but you won’t let yourself comfort yourself with food. So of course it resists using the tools. Who wouldn’t!

That’s the same part of you that believes that using your tools is a lot of work, that it’s hard and that it won’t actually lead to any lasting change anyway. We call that the Drill Sgt. and his characteristic “learned helplessness.”  

Read more of Tools for How to stop binging, overeating, emotional eating and dieting.

Posted in: 2012, All-or-Nothing Thinking, Audios, Podcast, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Self, Self-Checklist

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Why is it so hard to be honest??

Why is it so Hard to be Honest?

One of the hardest things for people to do, especially people who have received any co-dependent training, is to hold themselves to the core value of honesty.  But it doesn’t have to be that way. Read on to find out why honesty is so challenging some times and what you can do to start feeling more confident in your ability to be honest with everyone, all the time.

The answer to the question ‘Why is it so hard to be honest’ is twofold:

1.  We often (usually) don’t even know what we truly feel and want and need. We might know something doesn’t feel right or good or okay but we have our inner critic immediately judging our feelings and so we mistrust our emotions just as we mistrust our hunger and fullness cues.

2.  We are scared crapless to piss people off! Let’s just admit it! We don’t want to upset anyone. We don’t want to be the bad guy. We don’t want anyone saying anything about us that isn’t nice and warm and fuzzy. And so we bail on ourselves.

    And just in case you’re still wondering if this applies to you: If you have any food and body image stress, or if you binge, or struggle with restriction (dieting or anorexia or orthorexia (an obsession with eating “clean”), or purging (through exercise, laxatives, or vomiting)  or with drinking, drugs, too much t.v. or internet; feeling overrun by your relationships or frustrated in your career, you can guarantee that you have a high dose of co-dependent training.

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    Posted in: 2012, All-or-Nothing Thinking, CEDRIC Centre, Natural Eating 101, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Self, Tips for Natural Eating

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    The Process of Lasting Change

    Process of Lasting Change

    Repeated patterns are a window to your needs and the process of lasting change will help you address those needs. For every pattern you repeat, for example: overeating, purging, or restriction, there is a need which is being met within you. Your inability to change the undesirable pattern has nothing to do with lack of willpower or discipline. The pattern is merely a symptom of a deeper problem. If you direct your efforts only at attempting to eliminate the symptom without putting effort into understanding and dissolving its cause, you are setting yourself up for a very fatiguing and defeating battle.

    Understanding the Process of Lasting Change

    Awareness is the first step in changing any behaviour. You must first become aware that you are doing something which is detrimental to your values and life plan. Resistance is often your immediate reaction to becoming aware of what you are doing and why. This makes perfect sense. You have lived your life with a certain set of behaviours and beliefs. Given this, change, even if desired on some level, often feels less like innovation and more like annihilation of your entire existence as you know it. You wonder what will be left of you, your relationships and the life you know, when you have made the changes necessary to free yourself of this debilitating behaviour. This really means: when you are fully aware of the underlying need that led you to execute this behaviour, will you still choose the people and things you have chosen thus far? From this perspective, change can look very scary and the outcome very lonely. This is why so many of us have to hit our own personal “rock bottom” before we are ready to challenge old, harmful patterns of thoughts and behaviours. You must reach a place where you say, “I don’t care what the outcome is. Just make it stop!”

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    Posted in: 2012, CEDRIC Centre, newsletter, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Others, Relationship with Self, Tips for Natural Eating

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    Travelling with an Eating Disorder

    Travelling with an Eating DisorderTravelling with an Eating Disorder – Part I

    Travelling with an Eating Disorder – Part II

    Travelling with an Eating Disorder – Part III

    Part I

    Traveling with an eating disorder packs a triple whammy for the already beleaguered spirit in desperate need of true rest and relaxation. Whether you struggle with dieting, overeating, purging or a general dissatisfaction with your physical form that prevents you from settling peacefully into the moment, a vacation can be a stress-filled experience that makes you want to just stay at home instead with the covers pulled high.

    In this 3-part article, I will not deal with the obvious stress of the obligatory attempts at dieting in anticipation of any vacation that requires the baring of any skin above the elbow or knee. That is a topic for another day. Instead, I will address the 3 key ways in which traveling can challenge the tenuous grip most disordered eaters have on their relationship with food and weight: limitations/abundance of choice; change in routine; and the emotional impact of traveling. As I explore each of these confounding circumstances I will provide you with some suggestions on how to approach them in the most simple and life-enhancing way so you can relax and enjoy your well-earned vacation.

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    Posted in: All-or-Nothing Thinking, CEDRIC Centre, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Others, Relationship with Self, Tips for Natural Eating

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    All or nothing thinking

    All or nothing thinkingThis week we are reviewing the theme of ‘all or nothing thinking’ and the simplest way to help our readers to shift out of their old, deeply ingrained, all or nothing thought habits and into a more open, expansive and peaceful state of being and thinking.

    In a nutshell, if you’re not feeling compassion for yourself and the others that you’re interacting with in that moment (whether in your mind or in reality), you’re in all or nothing thinking. It’s that simple.

    You may want to read that last statement a few times to make sure it sinks in.  Then read on.

    You can test this theory for yourself over the next few days any time you notice that you’re feeling anything other than peaceful.

    Whenever you notice you’re feeling anxious or unsettled; judgmental of yourself or others; blaming; resentful; impatient; etc., or using your food coping strategy (which is a clear indicator that you’re overwhelmed) simply stop and ask yourself:

    “What am I telling myself about this situation or person that is creating this distress?”

    Then stop and think, really think, about what you just told yourself.  Is it true?  Are you certain?

    You will always identify that you have just been telling yourself an all or nothing story.

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    Posted in: All-or-Nothing Thinking, CEDRIC Centre, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Self

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    The Logic of Binging

    Logic of BingingHave you ever wondered why you, or some of the people you care about, seem to feel compelled to do things that they say they don’t want to? Do you ever find yourself doing things like overeating, or calorie-counting/dieting, or drinking a bit too much, or spending a bit too much, or procrastinating on things, or isolating rather than socializing? Well if you’d like to finally understand what’s really going on behind the scenes (in your head!) to make you behave in ways you know aren’t good for you or that will ultimately cause you stress, read on.

    In order for you to completely understand why you do what you do and what you can do to begin to think, and therefore, behave, differently, I’ve put together a kind of step-by-step flow of logic that will help your brain shift out of confused, stuck thinking and into rational, reasonable thoughts that will influence you to behave in ways that will enhance all aspects of your life. ’Cause, let’s face it, you know that some of the things you do aren’t the best choices, you may even have tried to stop or cut back or make some big lifestyle changes. But if you haven’t understood what’s really driving you to do those things in the first place, you can’t be successful for long, and instead will likely feel more stuck and hopeless rather than inspired and confident.

    If you’re at all a believer in the concept that your thoughts create your reality, the following logic flow will help you to feel more solid and grounded in clear thinking. This means you will be confidently more present in the world and able to enjoy your food, drink, exercise, free time, and socializing more while being less likely to use any of those substances and behaviours to cope with stress or emotions such as anxiety, anger, insecurity or sadness.

    The following is a list of basic premises you must accept in order to heal from any stressful patterns of thinking and behaving and live life to the fullest. I encourage you to read this over on a daily basis for a week and you’ll be amazed at the shifts that occur in your relationship with yourself and with others, with little or no effort on your part.

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    Posted in: All-or-Nothing Thinking, CEDRIC Centre, Complete Recovery, Natural Eating 101, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Others, Relationship with Self, Relationships 101, The Law of Attraction, Tips for Natural Eating

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    The Secret to Making Your Dreams Come True

    Making Your Dreams Come TrueToday, (11/21/11) for me, was one of those days that we might dream about for years and years, hoping it will come true but truly wondering if it ever would. Perhaps from our little girl selves at the age of 8 or 10, and then again, with greater emphasis and clarity in our teens, and then early 20’s and maybe during some dark times too, that dream would keep us plugging along, one seemingly cement-laden foot in front of the other.

    Today I had the experience of educating a group of 160 nursing students on The CEDRIC Method. Now, that in and of itself is rather frickin’ cool! Getting to educate up-and-coming front line health care providers on a respectful, simple, effective way of perceiving and supporting their clients who may struggle with eating disorders or substance abuse issues is an incredible honour. Period. That’s a pretty cool day.

    But, it gets better!

    It was at a college that I went to many years ago. At that time I was a grade 10 drop out. A pot smoking, binging, isolating, depressed, anxious, insecure, totally – and I mean to-ta-leee – codependent young woman who couldn’t make eye contact with anyone without breaking out in hives!

    I used to literally slink onto campus, keep my head down in class and try not to interact any more than necessary with any other students.

    I could relate to the teachers amazingly well – even was asked and agreed to attend staff functions (aka pub crawls!) from time to time. But I felt so totally fat, gross, and just plain geeky with my peers (aka the cool people), that I didn’t make one friend in 4 years. Not one.

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    Posted in: newsletter, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Others, Relationship with Self, The Law of Attraction

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    How Do I Let Go of the Guilt for Eating That?! Natural Eating 101 Q&A

    This week we’re continuing our fantabulous exploration of Natural Eating troubleshooting with an answer to the question:

    “How do I “not feel guilty” for eating something when I’ve been telling myself/or others have been telling me for years that certain foods are just plain bad or that they’ll make me fat?”

    First of all, when it comes to food, the most important thing we can do is to come back to Natural Eating basics whenever we feel anxious or unsettled around food, or feel drawn to eat when we aren’t hungry.
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    Posted in: Natural Eating 101

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    Relationships 101 Week 5

    Understand relationshipsThis article is part of a series: Relationships 101: Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, Week 4.

    Oh yeah!!! We’re back with Week 5 of Relationships 101: Seeking to Understand Relationships

    This series is my gift to you because I want you to have the greatest happiness and peace you possibly can in all your relationships. If you read and re-read this series until you really get it, and practice these key tools, you will find that all your connections get simpler, easier, deeper and more pleasurable for you and almost all of that happens without you having to have any “big” conversations and confrontations.

    This week’s article and homework assignment (should you choose to explore it) will prove this, and you’ll be so amazed at how easy and safe relating to others can be.  Oh yeah!!!

    This week’s article “Seeking to understand” could just as aptly be called: “Allowing for the possibility that you have misunderstood someone.”
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    Posted in: CEDRIC Centre, Relationships 101

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    CEDRIC’s Weekly Update for Week 17, 2010

    CEDRIC Centre Weekly UpdateWelcome to the CEDRIC Centre’s blog. This is the best place online to make lasting and complete changes to your stressful relationship with food, as well as any other stressful circumstances whether in relation to your self-regard, your relationships or your career.

    Many would say that we are the experts in getting you from “I’m stuck” to unstuck.

    Our very simple, quick, and effective method for removing all the barriers to your success, while simultaneously teaching you new ways of approaching food and other stressors, works for every harmful coping strategy and for every age, male or female.

    So whether you overeat, restrict, purge, drink, procrastinate, get stuck in harmful or unsatisfying relationships, feel unfulfilled in your career, or struggle with family connections, our method will show you, simply and speedily, how to create the change you seek in all areas of your life.

    Don’t waste another day feeling stuck and stressed out. Regardless of what you may have tried in the past, I can guarantee you, you’ve never tried this because if you had, you wouldn’t still be seeking a solution. Guaranteed!

    CEDRIC’s Weekly Update

    Hello All!

    Welcome to The CEDRIC Centre weekly update for the week of April 26th, 2010.  It’s Michelle Morand, CEDRIC founder and director here.

    Our Vancouver Workshop Delivered: This past weekend I had the great experience of facilitating our transformative Phase I workshop for a group of amazing women in the heart of downtown Vancouver. Thank you ladies for your openness and willingness to share and to experiment with the tools you learned.

    Here are some wonderful comments I received. Thank you again, ladies!

    “Thank you for your patience and kindness of teaching me tools which I will be able to use in my life. I have already noticed a shift in my being.”

    “I will be recommending this course to all my friends and family who need it.”

    “I learned that there is a reason why I overeat and that is enough to change my behaviour of overeating right now!”

    “Lots of good information has been provided during these 3 days and the opportunity to practice. I really liked the one-on-one opportunities to work with you.”

    “You are a really good therapist and person: Genuine; warm; knowledgeable; caring and skilled.”

    “You are a gifted facilitator with an amazing ability to keep the group focused and learning from each other.”

    Meet me in Vancouver at the Wellness Show: This coming weekend I will be in Vancouver again for the Wellness Show at the Convention Centre at the Pan Pacific Hotel. I will be presenting on Saturday @ 5:45 and on Sunday @ 11:00. If you know anyone who would benefit from learning more about why they do what they do, whether it’s procrastinate, engage in an eating disorder, restrict, purge or overeat, engage in the diet-binge-guilt cycle, drink or use drugs to cope, or simply just not take as good care of themselves as they “know” they should, I do hope you’ll encourage them to join me for this presentation.

    CEDRIC in the News: On top of that, if you watch Fanny Kiefer’s Studio 4 show on Shaw in Vancouver, you’ll be seeing me on Wednesday the 12th of May @ 9:00 am.  How fun is that!?  We just had the gift of a Globe and Mail article last week and a Victoria Shaw TV special on Orthorexia.  It really is very exciting to see the increasing public awareness that our holistic model of treatment for eating disorders and related concerns is generating in the media.

    Our Victoria May Workshop: We have a Phase I workshop, May 14 – 16th that still has some room for a few participants if you’d like to join me in Victoria. And as always, our innovative and comprehensive web-based support program is available to you 24/7.

    Virtual Private Counselling: We offer individual therapy from anywhere in the world via telephone or Skype and welcome the opportunity to support you to heal completely and forever from the stress of the use of food to cope.

    Have a beautiful week!

    The CEDRIC Centre - Michelle Morand

    Posted in: 2010, CEDRIC Centre, Relationship with Others, Relationship with Self, The CEDRIC Centre Weekly Update, workshops

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