Welcome back to the final lesson for the 12 Keys to a Healthy Weight. Last time we explored how gratitude helps you keep a positive attitude. Today’s topic is how to stay confident and prevent relapse as you move forward with your healthy living goals.
Key #12: Keep doing what’s working, while you watch for plateaus
For people who’ve made progress in their recovery from an eating disorder such as binge eating, compulsive overeating, anorexia or bulimia, the fear of relapse can be very strong.
As long as you continue to use the skills you learned as you recovered, your progress will not disappear – that is the key.
People in 12-step programs may stop going to meetings or using the steps and the tools of the program. Others may fall back on speaking up for themselves in relationships or dealing with problems. Any of these patterns can be a “slippery slope” on the road to relapse.
While it’s important to continue doing what’s been working for you, it’s equally important to watch for whether you’ve hit a plateau. A therapist, dietician, 12-step sponsor, or trusted friend can often spot this in you before you see it in yourself.
Occasional weight fluctuations or plateaus are normal, as are spiritual and emotional plateaus. Be honest with yourself and ask whether it’s time to change things up or try something new. Speak to an expert before adjusting your level of movement or your food plan.
We never want to stop growing in recovery or in life. Here are some tips that will help you to boost your confidence and guard against relapse:
- Have a clear plan of eating
- Incorporate some gentle movement that you enjoy every day
- Take time to relax every day
- Notice when you have unrealistic expectations of yourself and change your mindset to reduce stress
- Practice Step 10 (self-reflection) and Step 11 (centering and connection) to find the answers that are inside of you
You may not do everything on this list, and you may not need to. Identify for yourself what is non-negotiable for you to be able to maintain your recovery. What do you need to do each and every day, and are you willing to do those things?
Maintenance is like keeping a fire stoked in the fireplace. Some days you’ll have to do more than others, but it’s about taking continuous action and keeping vigilant. Food and body image issues don’t stay silent. You will have your own set of warning signs or triggers to watch for, and it’s good to keep this list handy.
Relapse may be part of recovery, but it doesn’t have to be. At White Picket Fence Counseling Center we work with you on relapse prevention from day one, in our first meeting. Healthy tools must be woven right into the fabric of your recovery.
This affirmation will support this ongoing process of maintenance and growth:
Everything I need to be the best person I can is already inside of me
Thank you for being with us for this series on the 12 keys to weight management. You can see all the posts by visiting this link: https://whitepicketfencecounselingcenter.com/tag/12-keys/