Posts Tagged binge eating

Plus Sized Debate

Hello out there.

Plus Sized Debate

There’s a news story that came out a little while ago that I have been reflecting on. Here’s the link if you’d like to check it out.

I wanted to share with you the thoughts that it brought up for me about the Plus Sized Debate that currently rages in our world. 

This link will connect you to an article by a ‘plus-size’ model about clothing sizes and our cultural body image / weight obsession.

I am glad she’s speaking up and challenging the status quo and I also question the definition of this woman as a ‘plus-size’ model. 

I personally look at this woman and struggle to label her as plus-sized in any way. She looks simply healthy and balanced to me.

Maybe I have a distorted idea of what plus sized means…I guess if we look at it literally…plus = more…but more than what? Is it the fashion industry ‘what’…which we already know is notoriously dysfunctional and promotes the notion of bone-rack-at-any-cost? I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being ‘plus’ that.

Are they referring to the fitness crazed 6-pack-ab, eating clean and lean crowd…not balanced. Not sustainable for most truly and a large proportion of my clients come from this population – dieticians, nutritionists, fitness trainers and coaches, body builders, athletes. Clearly folks can look ‘fit’ but be far from it in terms of balanced self-care. Remember this if you’re looking at your friend the fitness nut and feeling envious of her slim/toned body.

Look a Little Deeper…

Look deeper – how does she really feel about herself; how is her self-confidence; is her fitness focus about true enjoyment and health and wellness or about needing to be thin. You can be fit and toned and sexy without being a fitness buff and you can look great without having to diet or micro-manage calories and fat grams.

Maybe ‘plus-size’ to some means ‘bigger than normal people’…but, um…what’s normal? Different bodies, different genetic heritage and different interests are naturally going to produce different norms (is a pro-skater plus sized because her thighs are bigger than others?).

I suppose in reality, try as we might to avoid it…the ugly truth is that for most folks the term ‘plus-size’ conjures immediate connotations of being overweight. Why do we need the ‘plus’ in the size – can’t there just be different sizes? Again, ‘plus’ what?

I find the same confounding thinking in folks who get stuck on being ‘good enough’. There is no way, ever that you can be ‘good enough.’ It isn’t a thing or a place you can get to. The term ‘good enough’ on its own means absolutely nothing. You have to qualify it: Good enough for what? Good enough for whom?

Then you get the light bulb moment: good enough for my mom; for my ex; for the job I want; to travel to France, etc.

Some Questions to Ask Yourself

Once you qualify who or what you’re striving to be good enough for you can begin to ask yourself some very valuable and freeing questions:

  • What, in the first place, makes me think that this person or situation is the accurate determiner of my worth/good enough-ness?
  • What makes them ‘right’ and me ‘wrong’?
  • What specifically is the criteria that I believe would make me ‘good enough’ for this person or situation?
  • Is it true that I am not that now? Is it true that I can’t be that if I wanted to and spent some time gathering the tools/skills/knowledge etc.?
  • Would I really want to spend my precious life moments trying to be ‘good enough’ for that person/thing?
  • If I weren’t so busy trying to make others think I’m ‘good enough’ what would I really like to be ‘good enough’ at/for?

I could go on – it’s a very key piece of the healing / recovery / stop-overeating puzzle and it is a discussion and process I explore with every single client at some point in their work with me.

From my past experience, I can completely relate to not feeling ‘good-enough’ and to the chronic insecurity and depression that we live in when we feel that, at our core, there is simply something fundamentally wrong with us. There must be something wrong with us, we presume, otherwise wouldn’t so-and-so have loved us? Wouldn’t so-and-so have been kind to us? Wouldn’t we have been given such-and-such opportunity?

Not necessarily – there are many other possible explanations for why so-and-so did what they did that aren’t about you at all. But that’s a topic for another day.

Exploring Your Emotions

Back to being plus-sized: I used to eat my feelings (and anything else I could get my hands on). That only made me feel worse – fat, gross, ugly, stupid – I used to call myself that everyday and then some. I weighed 40+ pounds more than I naturally do now. (I’ve been my natural weight for 2 decades with no dieting or exercise regimes and haven’t weighed myself since…I dunno when.)

I’m 5’4 and I weigh 125-130-ish lbs depending on the time of year and how active I am – yes, my weight naturally fluctuates over the course of the year, and it doesn’t stress me out – my clothes fit me all year round, through the winter I’m less muscly and through the summer more naturally toned. I don’t diet and I don’t calorie count or ‘watch’ what I eat.

I pay attention to how I feel physically and emotionally. I engage in activities that I truly enjoy such as kayaking, Mixed Martial Arts, an occasional jog, hiking, swimming (in the ocean when the weather is right), snowboarding…etc. It all depends on the season and the weather – the point really is that it’s all stuff I enjoy and there’s a variety of activities that I feel drawn to explore depending on the variables of season, weather, how much time I have, etc.

I respond to my emotions by respecting them and exploring them and, if I’m having a feeling that I don’t want to keep having, I take the time to figure out what triggered it and what I can do to resolve that. This makes me feel like I can trust myself to respect myself and like I can always find a solution to the problems in my life. I didn’t used to feel that way at all – I felt constantly anxious and like everything was insurmountable, and my fault to boot. Somehow I believed that if I was just thinner, these things wouldn’t happen.

The way I see it now, feelings are signs for me to explore how I’m thinking and what’s happening in my life. There is always a solution to whatever is bugging me that will make me feel better about myself and help me to feel peaceful and confident.

If I can eat what I’d like, exercise moderately – have fun/play/dance/kayak/walk the dog – and not have to watch what I eat or weigh myself 5 times a day like I used to ‘to keep myself in check’, I believe everyone can.

I didn’t used to think I could be happy with myself unless I was eating a certain way or weighed a certain number on the scale or took a certain pant size. And I made that a self-fulfilling prophesy for quite a few years – I was miserable, insecure, anxious, isolating, and binging and dieting my face off. And I kept gaining weight.

I felt powerless and frustrated. I started every day by staring at and judging my stomach rolls while simultaneously hopping on the scale hoping that the binge I had last night hadn’t had a lasting impact and that the attempts I made at dieting during the day had at least some effect on the ‘bottom’ line. Inevitably I was doomed – even if, by some miracle, I had lost weight it would be 1/8th or 1/4 of a pound – no where near the 40+ pounds I needed to lose in order to be ‘good enough’.

This naturally led to yet another day of me feeling anxious and insecure and creating a desperate need for binge food while at the same time promising myself I wouldn’t do it again!!! Yep, many years of my life were spent that way.

At that time in my life I was plus-sized. I had to shop in ‘special’ stores, of which, 20+ years ago, there were 2 in all of Vancouver, BC. How’s that for the fashion industry delivering a message about my body?

Today, by anyone’s standards I think, I’m a reasonable weight for my body but I still have to buy large undies! It is what it is to me now – I need undies that are comfy and don’t give me panty lines – and these are often a size large – big whoop. But back in the diet mentality days of my life, I’d prefer to chafe and struggle to breathe over buying anything with a ‘large’ tag on it. I’d be mortified. It truly felt like the biggest and worst thing a person could ever be: Large! (Insert scary organ music here!!)

But that wasn’t me thinking. That was what I had been taught to think by my parents and their distorted, diet mentality approach to life. I just hadn’t even entertained the possibility that they may have been confused or downright irrational in their approach to happiness and self-esteem. 

Among those who have yet to truly feel ‘good enough’ for themselves,  there is often a desperate need to de-exist (I’m sure that’s a word…) Why are people so eager to be a size zero? What do they believe that will mean?

Are they thinking: ‘I’m finally good enough, attractive enough, lovable enough, sexy enough because I’m so small no clothes will fit me? ‘ 

How does that number on your pants correspond to your worth or love-ability as a human being?

Um….it doesn’t – unless you’re trying to make someone with a small brain and huge judgement finally see you as ‘good enough’ – which I recommend strongly against.

Someone who is truly that ignorant of what true love and true acceptance are about will never be able to be rational enough to have a healthy relationship with you in the first place (probably why you feel so insecure around them in the first place – they can’t meet your needs for reassurance and acceptance because they don’t have a clue how! Not because you aren’t worth it!).

You’ll never be able to feel truly loved by them because they don’t even understand the term. So, move on if that’s you. Even if it’s your mom or dad or auntie or grandma doing the slamming – If they are not simply concerned for your health and happiness and demonstrating they love you and accept you as you are – move on – fast.

The need to be accepted and loved is a perfectly healthy human need – persisting in trying to find acceptance and love from folks who judge your worth by your weight is not healthy or helpful and will never, ever, be successful.

You Deserve Better

You truly do deserve better – but you won’t find it if you keep beating your head against that brick wall. And if you’re out there buying it – thinking there is something not lovable or good enough about you and that’s why they aren’t more loving or warm or considerate or accepting of you it’s time for you to learn how to think for yourself and to build real self-esteem and to prioritize values like respect, dignity, compassion, self-care, reliability, integrity and trustworthiness (to yourself and others).

This clear thinking makes you feel more confident and less anxious and naturally leads you to feel excited to take better care of yourself. 

Self-esteem means you trust your ability to think clearly and reasonably and you have to have confidence in your perspective. That is the foundation for good self-esteem and a happy life and it also naturally leads to the ability for you to change, effectively and respectfully, the things you see in yourself and in your world that don’t make sense.

Then instead of waiting for everyone around you to feel secure enough in themselves to be able to give you the love you desire, you are naturally, fully, giving it to yourself and through your behaviour you are naturally teaching others how love really looks and feels, at any size.

In the U.K. there is a current initiative to change all the mannequins in clothing shops to a size 16 (from, I think, a size 6)  because the real average size of women in that region is much more 16 than 6. I believe it’s long overdue that a more accurate form of the average female in any region be modelling clothing, jewelry, and anything else that requires modelling to sell.

In my opinion, if folks are naturally a 16 or 20 or 2, so what? Are they nice? Are they honest, trustworthy reliable folks with a good work ethic? Are they capable of rational thought and action? If so, I love them!

If someone has extra weight on their body because they eat when they aren’t hungry to try and pass the time or calm their nerves or soothe or nurture themselves, I help them to feel happy and peaceful and confident in themselves for real – i.e. without needing food to make that happen for a moment.

Whatever the number on their pants or on the scale when they reach that sense of inner confidence and strength and genuine happiness has truly no bearing on their deservedness for love and caring or on their intellect or ability.

I say, unless we know how the person we are looking at achieves their current weight or maintains a certain look, we cannot begin to offer comment on the healthiness or appropriateness of their appearance. I’ve had way too many clients over the past 20 years who are starving themselves or vomiting many times a day to maintain a certain weight while the people around them praise them for their will-power, slimness, and small size. Ya never know what goes on behind closed doors.

For me, I’m far more interested in how happy and confident and secure in yourself you are than in the size of dress you just bought – ‘plus’ or otherwise.

And I know that anyone who is capable of a truly healthy, loving relationship of any kind is going to think the same.

What do you think? Let’s discuss the thoughts that come up for you when you consider these concepts.

Love Michelle

Posted in: 2014, All-or-Nothing Thinking, and Binging, Anorexia and Bulimia, CEDRIC Centre, Complete Recovery, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Others, Relationship with Self

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How to Stop Binging: The First Simple Steps

How to stop Binging, my article from last week, focussed on The Diet-Binge-Guilt cycle: Why we often binge in the first place and began a discussion of how to stop binging for good.

This week I’m going to enhance that discussion with a more detailed exploration of how our intention to limit the kinds (or quantity) of foods we eat can go sideways and, instead of supporting us to achieve our goals and have more self-esteem, our plans, more often than not, actually make us feel more anxious and depressed and more like a failure than we did the day before.

When we’re stuck in this Diet-Binge-Guilt cycle we feel lots of guilt and shame and hopelessness. The last thing we want to do is admit it to anyone, which makes it hard to get help and makes us want to withdraw from people and isolate. This often leads us to have increased social anxiety and insecurity in relationships and to lean even more heavily on those BAD foods to numb and soothe ourselves in order to simply make it through our day. Sound familiar?

My goal is to make sure you have a clear understanding of why it is you binge in the first place and exactly how to stop binging for good; not just for a day or a week, but really, truly, once-and-for-all good. You see, I know you can stop binging for ever because I have (decades ago) and I’ve helped many hundreds of men and women worldwide to stop for good too.

The best part about getting over binging and learning to trust yourself around food is that you now get to enjoy eating whatever you truly want and you no longer feel guilty or ashamed or like you need to exercise like crazy just to lose weight.

When you simply eat when you’re hungry and stop when you’re full, you will naturally lose weight (if you have weight to lose), there will be no need to diet or exercise your way there. Really.

And in order to live in that space (that may sound really impossible to imagine right now) you just need to understand how your thinking and your behaviour is getting in the way of your relationship with food, then you can side-step that whole power struggle once and for all and get on with living life for real and to the fullest.

Last week I explained how our plans for how to eat on any given day seem, on the surface at least, to be well-intended and you believe they will help you achieve your goals of weight loss; feeling in control of food; and feeling better about yourself overall.

Your initial self-commitment of the day may sound something like this:

“I’m not going to eat anything after dinner tonight because if I start I won’t stop and if I don’t binge or snack after dinner tonight I’ll feel lighter and less doped up tomorrow, have less negative self-chatter in my head, and ultimately, if I keep that up, I’ll lose weight and stop being so preoccupied about my body. Then I’ll feel better overall, have more self-esteem, start wanting to have sex with my husband or start dating a great new guy and life will finally be the way it should be.”

That’s definitely a motivating image! Who wouldn’t want that?!!

However, we forgot one tiny, wee, little detail.

We made the same promise yesterday…And the day before that…And the day before that…

In fact many of us have made that promise to ourselves every day for years (Moi included before I got a good solid grip and learned how to stop binging once and for all).

So much so that it begins to feel more like some ritual we need to do to get some peace from our nagging self-chatter. Sort of like, “If I can pretend / sort-of-believe that I’ll be ‘good’ today, then I can forget a bit about last night and feel like I can at least get out the door and look other people in the eye today.”

So…what’s up? What’s stopping you now from following through on your commitment to eat well and not binge? If you’re so miserable and you really want to stop binging, what’s preventing you from making it a reality?

Well, think of it this way:

Let’s say, hypothetically, that yesterday you promised yourself you weren’t going to binge at night. But, you did. Or at least you had something that you told yourself you weren’t supposed to have.

So, this morning you wake up and the first thing on your mind is how anxious you feel and how you failed yesterday and what you’re going to do food wise today to make sure you don’t do the same thing again tonight.

Right?

Well…ummm…isn’t that what you did yesterday?

So, what’s changed? Why would today be any different? Think about it for a mo’.

Nothing has changed between yesterday and today.

Your desire to not binge is the same; your commitment to changing is (with the addition of a little more inner frustration given yesterday’s failure) the same; your plan is the same…so why would today be any different?

Well, if you’re thinking reasonably and rationally it won’t be. Therefore, the wisest thing you could do would be to not make another commitment about not binging because there really is no legitimate reason for you to expect yourself to keep it, is there? That is, until you have reason to trust that you know how to stop binging.

Now before that voice in your head freaks out too much and your anxiety level goes through the roof and sends you rushing for the Pringles, hear me out:

Letting go of the commitment not to binge doesn’t mean giving yourself licence to binge. In fact it’s just the opposite.

This is key so I’ll say it again, and I invite you to say it out loud to yourself so you can hear it and see what pops into your head as you hear it:

Letting go of the commitment not to binge doesn’t mean giving yourself licence to binge. In fact it’s just the opposite.

You will prove this to yourself very quickly so don’t worry you don’t have to take my word for it or pretend to accept something that, right now anyway, seems like a very foreign concept.

It will help to remember that a big part of your urgent need for something to eat, in addition to the fact that you use food to manage your stress, is the restriction that you have placed around that food and your subsequent preoccupation with not being allowed to have it.

So, contrary to suggesting you just give up and binge your face off, what I’m actually saying is this:

1. Let’s be real. You haven’t been able to solve your problem with diets and restriction and promises so far. Despite your years of effort, hard work and focus, you still don’t know how to stop binging, so let’s just admit that what you’ve been trying doesn’t work, for anyone, and grant yourself permission, even for the next 3 months (as a little test) to move on to something that does.

2. Let’s figure out what it is that happens during your day and in your head that makes you bail on what we both know you really want, which is to eat sensibly, have a little fun with food, feel good about yourself, and be a natural healthy weight for your body without dieting and constant stress about food.

So here’s the plan to begin to experience significant and lasting change in your binging, overeating, emotional eating, eating disorder…whatever you want to call it:

1. Reassure yourself that you’re never going to (or at least for the next 3 months) make yourself promise not to binge anymore. Remind yourself that this doesn’t mean that you’re urging yourself to binge or setting yourself up to just let go and make overeating okay. It simply means that you’re allowing yourself to live in reality and see the truth about what you can and can’t do right now and that you’re no longer willing to cause yourself added stress and make yourself feel bad about yourself by setting goals that you have no way of keeping.

2. Acknowledge that you are committed to finding a solution to your binging, that doesn’t involve restriction (because, despite all of your efforts, that hasn’t worked yet in any lasting way remember).

3. Take action: The first step for how to stop binging is to learn how to figure out what it is that is actually triggering you (Hint –it isn’t the food!).

A simple exercise that I ask my clients to do at the start of our work together so that they can see for themselves what’s really triggering them to binge, and therefore stop beating themselves up, is this:

Invite yourself to notice a. when you’re thinking about eating and you’re not hungry or b. when you find yourself eating more than you’re hungry for.

When you notice this, don’t let yourself get stuck in judging yourself, simply ask: Just before I reached for food, what was I thinking or what just happened, separate from food, that might have made me feel anxious or unsettled at all?

Write your answers down so you can see, out of your head, what’s really going on for you and you will be amazed at how that one piece of information alone helps you to feel less stressed and overwhelmed right away.

Now we’re talking! You’ll very quickly be able to see the link between daily stress or stressful thoughts, and your desire for certain foods or to binge. And here’s where we come in…

4. Learn how to notice your triggers immediately and how to feel peaceful and confident in your ability to find solutions to any problems or stressors that present themselves in your life. This is actually surprisingly easy when you know what to do because most of our problems are actually caused by 2 or 3 simple factors. And once you know how to take care of those factors in one area of your life (like work or in a key relationship) you will naturally know how to do so everywhere in your life.

In fact, it is very common for me to be able to support people completely through their recovery from binge eating and from the underlying, triggering issues in 3 months of regular sessions.

Many people, perhaps even you, believe that change that lasts has to take a long time and be really hard. These beliefs often lead us to procrastinate on reaching out for help as we believe we don’t have the time or energy and that it will not work anyway, so why bother.

But the reality is, we only believe this pack of lies because we’ve been stuck trying to learn how to stop binging by focussing on food and not the real root of the problem. No wonder we haven’t been successful!

I can tell you with confidence that when people are given tools that work and the support to learn to use them well, their whole life can change, forever, in just a few minutes a day.

I have been working as a specialist with men and women who binge for 20+ years now. I know that you don’t need to struggle any longer and that change truly does happen quickly when you have simple tools that work and a guide who really understands what you need.

That’s what my team and I at The CEDRIC Centre provide you.

You can read some feedback from many CEDRIC Centre clients here if you’d like to get a sense for how simple this process is and how quickly it can change your life.

Love Michelle

Posted in: and Binging, CEDRIC Centre, Complete Recovery, Tips for Natural Eating, Uncategorized

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Overcoming Your Love-Hate Relationship With Food

Overcoming Your Love-Hate Relationship With Food

Overcoming Your Love-Hate Relationship With Food


If you’d like to understand, once and for all, why you feel so frustrated about your weight and why your relationship with food is so stressful, this article will explain it all and give you a simple exercise to experiment with so you can start overcoming your love-hate relationship with food. Regardless of whether you are an emotional eater, a compulsive eater or struggle with an eating disorder such as anorexia, bulimia, or binge eating disorder this article will help you understand a key piece of the puzzle of what you need to do to change how much room food takes up in your life and in your brain, for good! 

Last week I told you about the relationship between certain foods and your brain chemistry. I gave you the scientific data behind why you are naturally drawn to eat certain foods (like chips, bread, cheese, ice cream and chocolate) even though you know they aren’t the best for you nutritionally and won’t help you reach your weight loss goals. (If you prefer to watch a video rather than read, my video on sidestepping the food-emotion power struggle explains it all and then some.)

This week I want to introduce you to the real issue; the thing that is at the root of it all.

What is it that makes you want those foods, even when you’re not hungry, regardless of your diet plan or your intention to eat well and your true heart’s desire to lose weight and feel great in your body?  Well, through my personal recovery from binge eating disorder and my 20 years as a specialist in the field of eating disorders, addictions, depression, anxiety and trauma, I came to see clearly that the cause of your overeating or diet dilemma, had very little at all to do with food and instead was triggered by some faulty wiring in the supercomputer that is your brain.

I am happy to say that, through the use of neural mapping and the marvels of brain imaging, science has since proven this to be true.  So, we now know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that if you often eat more than you’re hungry for or binge or diet more than once or twice in your lifetime or struggle with anorexia, being eating disorder, or bulimia or other forms of eating disorders the fact is, right now you have in your brain, some mis-wiring and mis-firing that has created what I call ‘a confused stress response.’

This confused stress response is also present in those who find themselves dependent on alcohol, drugs, tv, the internet and other common human coping strategies. As frustrating as this might have been for you until now, it is actually quite easy to change once you know what to do and how to do it. (more…)

Posted in: 2013, All-or-Nothing Thinking, and Binging, Anorexia and Bulimia, Brain Chemistry, Complete Recovery, Natural Eating 101, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Others, Relationship with Self, Tips for Natural Eating, Uncategorized

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Tips for Happy Holiday Eating

tips for holiday eatingThe holidays can be stressful enough without adding stress about food to the mix. On top of thoughts about family (some we may love dearly and some we’d like to never have to see again), friends, travel plans, money and gift stress, and increased time pressures we certainly don’t need anything else to fret about at what is supposed to be a most fun and peaceful time of year. But if we are stressed about our relationship with food and uncomfortable with our weight, we naturally have another layer of stress, a chronic 24/7 chatter in our brain, that cranks up a few more notches at this time of year. (more…)

Posted in: 2012, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Self, Tips for Natural Eating, Uncategorized

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Workshops

Master Series 3 Day Eating Disorder Workshops:

– ‘Master Your Brain – Master Your Behaviour’:  Feb. 22nd to 24th, 2013 in Vancouver and March 8 to 10, 2013 in Victoria.  Our ‘Master’ Series of workshops is designed to help those who are emotional or stress eaters, struggle with bulimia, anorexia or binge eating, or are caught in the diet cycle with no lasting results, find peace and freedom with food and maintain a natural weight for their body, without the need for chronic dieting and rigorous exercise programs.  CEDRIC Counsellors teach everything participants need to know about what is triggering their frustrating thoughts and behaviours around food and other aspects of life, and how to change them once and for all!

(more…)

Posted in: 2012, Complete Recovery, Upcoming Events, workshops

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Maryanne’s Recovery From Daily Binging and Purging

Read about how she transformed from Daily Binging and Purging to Peace and Freedom in 6 Months

Her Last Resort  Six months ago Maryanne called me, feeling totally down and stuck. A 30 year old, divorced mother of 2 children (10 and 12), she said, through tears, that I was her last resort. I’ve been at this work long enough, and have my own eating disorder history and longstanding recovery so I understood what that statement meant. It meant she was desperate. She’d tried every diet out there and maybe even some sort of residential treatment or ‘weight loss retreat.’ (more…)

Posted in: 2012, Complete Recovery, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Self, Uncategorized

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CEDRIC Centre Mindful Eating Info Package

CEDRIC Centre for Mindful Eating Info Package

The CEDRIC Centre’s specialized program helps people of all ages to lose or gain weight and to maintain a natural weight for their bodies, for life without diet and rigorous exercise regimes. We teach you how to establish a healthy relationship with food, yourself and others, how to deal with stress, anxiety and depression in ways that boost self-esteem and allow you to feel more secure as you focus less on what you eat and weigh.  See intro video for the CEDRIC Centre Mindful Eating Info Package. The CEDRIC team provides counselling in person in British Columbia, Canada, as well via skype and phone worldwide.  We offer 3-day Workshops, Hard Copy and Downloadable  Resources sold separately or accessed through our Online Program and incude: CD’s; DVD’s; Workbooks; Teleclasses, Lessons, Assignments, a book entiled, Food Is Not The Problem – Deal With What Is by CEDRIC Founder and Director Michelle Morand, MA, RCC and more! (more…)

Posted in: 2012, Audio CDs, Audio Downloads, Audios, Book Downloads, Books, Content, Product Bundles, Product Bundles, Self-Help Services, Uncategorized, Video, Video, Workbooks, Workbooks, Workbooks - Downloads, workshops

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CEDRIC’s Online Program for Eating Disorders – Video Intro & Written Feedback

Online Program for Eating Disorders     Read what Online Member’s have told us about their experiences with our online program for eating disorders: “There isn’t a day that goes by that you and your wonderful centre don’t enter my mind! Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!  I really like the teleclasses. It is so nice to hear your voice.   I love that we start each class with the 4-7-8, it is so relaxing and creates such a great atmosphere.  I don’t feel nervous or afraid to share at all!  I love how much I learn through others experiences.” (more…)

Posted in: 2012, Audios, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Others, Relationship with Self, Self-Help Services, Video, Video, Workbooks

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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 Do Those Foods Keep Calling My Name?

Foods Keep Calling My NameWhat we eat often reflects our culture, our family heritage, our self-esteem and our self-awareness. Our diet can also be used to directly manipulate the state of our chemistry and hormones. For example reducing our intake of certain foods will have a direct and positive impact on the severity of our PMS and menopausal symptoms. Adding certain foods to our diet that balance specific hormones will also have a positive effect on a variety of hormone related human concerns such as depression, anxiety, and again menstrual or menopausal symptoms. In other words, in addition to fuelling our body for growth and repair functions, certain foods influence the release of certain hormones which in turn have a direct and often immediate influence on our moods. Chief among these mood inducing hormones is dopamine. Dopamine is the ultimate feel good chemical. It powers the brain’s pleasure centre creating sensations of happiness, calm, and soothing. So, it’s no coincidence that every drug that humans are drawn to abuse (including binge foods) triggers the release of dopamine. (more…)

Posted in: 2012, Relationship with Food, Relationship with Self

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