12 November 2013

Brain roadworks in process, expect delays.

WARNING: Interruptions may occur and overload could cause delays. 

I'm trusting Dr B right now, that having arguments and fighting back is what I need to do to rewire roads my anorexic brain, into a noggin sans eating disorder-skewed thinking.

So, when I tell myself I'm fat, I need to create a 'I am not fat' pathway. When I want to go for a run because I feel lazy, I need to tell myself I am not lazy and need to rest. When I feel ugly, I need to tell myself I am not. When I panic I'm not good enough at work, I need to remind myself I am constantly learning and evolving. When I feel greedy, I need to argue that I'm not. And so on...

But I agree, I am those things, they are real and true to me. I instinctively feel should be responding to those thoughts. But I also know from my science lessons (therapy!) that I shouldn't be acting on them. But they seem such logical routes to me? To fix me, to get me where I need to be. Perfect, maybe.  

This rewiring process is sort of what makes recovery possible, it's creating new pathways for thoughts. It's altering the way all the brains buzzy bits, do their buzzing It's all a bit science-y, but I sort of get the idea, they're like old worn pathways.

I think It's like being adamant that you know a short cut to somewhere, until someone comes along and tells you another way is much better. At first, you think 'no way' you are positive you know the best route. It's only when you TRY it you realise they might be right. It takes some getting used to and a few journeys to feel comfortable, but after a while you learn to accept the new route is much more effective. 

However, take a lifetime of well trodden paths of negative self-talk that are SO easy to take and SO often used and try convincing me to take new ones. THANKS but no thanks - but I KNOW I need to take them. 

Right now, there are so many arguments I let happen with out challenging a new way, there are so many thoughts that need sending in a new direction and I don't. Add to that a sort of pick-and-mix culture I've dug myself into a hole with and it leads me up another dead end, with no progress. 

I won't get into the arguments I am winning and losing, but let's just say I have so many paths to check out that I've sort of just paused at a crossroads.

The problem is, I've been at the same crossroads with my thinking (even if I haven't been acting on all of anorexia's commands) for the last 12 months, same weight, same old arguments, same issues. I have pushed on in some ways, but the new thought paths haven't taken shape. 

I know anorexia's catching me up, sneaking up behind me, I can hear her. Even if I don't do what she says, it gets harder to ignore. I need to chose a pathway she doesn't know, but I've got so much going on, I don't know which way to run. 

Ps. I'm not as good at map reading as I let on sometimes. I need to take a look at this before getting lost and recovery doesn't have a personal satnav to help, just advice from people who walked the path before.


  1. You know what's cool about this? You don't have to rewrite every thought at once. Just a few. And once you begin to realize that you have changed those thoughts and eventually believe the truth (not the ed garbage), it will get so much easier. You will start doing it automatically and it won't seem like this constant back and forth battle. At least this is my experience. Hang in there. It's definitely hard in the beginning. I remember looking at my treatment team and rolling my eyes because I didn't think I'd ever be able to change beliefs that felt real and I had believed for over 10 years. But I did with time and hard work and I have no doubt you can too!

  2. My therapist told me something similar, creating new schemas to battle the old ones. A good tip was to create quick and short come backs, so that when the voice says you are fat, or lazy or greedy or any of the other things you shout out, so you have a quick answer, such as food is fuel, I am not fat I am healthy and I am not greedy my body needs this food. Good luck in your journey to recovery :)