My Eating Disorder and the Valuable Lesson it Taught Me

My Eating Disorder and the Valuable Lesson it Taught Me

I never had a healthy relationship with food. Growing up in a big Italian family, food was always a center of any occasion. It was something we gathered around, something we joined together over. Something we used to celebrate and to show love. But as joyful as it sounds, growing up with a family that was very close, there was something eating away at my soul and separating me from truly celebrating those moments: My Eating Disorder.

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I never really knew I had an eating disorder. I couldn’t tell you how it started, or why it started, but I can tell you the moment I recognized my body as something that was bad and needed to change. I was Seven. Yep… Seven. My friend and I were talking about our new favorite dance classes. I told her I loved my Jazz class, and that Ballet was boring. Offended by my statement, my little seven year old friend told me “Well, you wouldn’t be good at ballet anyway.”

“You have to be able to suck in your stomach,” she said.

I challenged her … showing her I could force in all my breath– sucking in all the air I could muster…. “See! I Can!” I said with a smile. Then she told me what she was trying to say all along. “No. Not like that. I mean… you have to be skinny.”

My Eating Disorder And How it Evolved

Through the years that moment, my body perception haunted me. As I got older, I wasn’t really getting attention from boys like my friends were. I blamed this on my body. And I started to believe that maybe my friend all those years ago was right. After all, I did have a belly… and my mom did tell me to suck in my stomach when she took pictures of me and my sisters. “Maybe my weight is what is holding me back,” I thought.

I wasn’t incredibly heavy, but I wasn’t skinny like most of my friends either. It was kind of like I was in this middle ground… I was on the edge of fitting in somewhere — I just didn’t know where. And like most teenagers who suffer from an eating disorder, I believed that if I gained control of my weight, I would be able to find my place in life. I would get guys to like me. I would feel more confident. I would finally have everything a teenager girl wants: LOVE.

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So in an effort to want to find love, I started punishing myself. I cut my calories, kept journals to log every crumb of food that touched my mouth…. and every pound I lost or gained. But the extremes of my lifestyle – eating nothing and starving my body only made my weight bounce up and down from one extreme to another…  all the way into college. Gaining and binge eating, Losing and starving, it was like I was on this rollercoaster of extremes with no middle ground.

When I started to date this guy my first year of college, I felt like I was finally in a place where feeling good about myself was possible. I started to believe that maybe my weight didn’t really matter much. But then, our relationship turned ugly… he didn’t treat me right and totally destroyed my self-esteem.. Things got really unhealthy and abusive really fast. And as a result, life got pretty dark for me after that. I got really depressed because of the way I was being treated and my self-esteem totally fell through into the deep end. I felt out of control of my life being in an abusive relationship. So I decided it was time to switch schools and head back home. And as quickly as my eating disorder had left my mind, it entered back again full force.

I felt the lowest self-worth I ever felt… and thinking that there was something wrong with me that I needed to change, the only way I could feel like I had control over my life was by forcing my body to change… in any way possible.

I starved myself. I purged. I did everything in my control to keep food from entering my life. But my eating disorder was controlling me.  I started loosing my hair. I could feel my spine poking through my shirts. And I was cold… all the time.  I dropped to under 109 pounds, losing more than 70 pounds in four months. Sure my mom wasn’t telling me to suck in my stomach anymore…. but now she was telling me I looked like a skeleton. A ghost of my former self. And even then, I felt like it wasn’t enough. I was never going to be as thin or as beautiful as I needed to find the love I was looking for… because the truth is, I was looking in all the wrong places.

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The Road to Recovering from My Eating Disorder

The road to recovery was long. I gained the weight back and learned how to lose it all over again — this time, the healthy way.

The most important lesson I learned was that my body wasn’t the thing I needed to fix in order to feel good: It was my mind that needed the true repairing.

I started educating myself on emotional eating and discovered principles I now teach in my online courses— Learning to let go of my insecurities about being accomplished or “being good enough,” and learning to actually just go after what I wanted for myself… without the fear that I wasn’t worth it. I started going after my goals in a healthier way.  And I uncovered the emotional compass that led me to set goals that were achievable, goals that were confidence boosting, not destructively unhealthy.

And mainly… most importantly….I started treating my body like something that was a reflection of who I wanted to be — not something that was holding me back from being beautiful.

Slowly, I learned to let go of my eating disorder, and let in love.

 

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I’ve realized something looking back on those moments where my eating disorder was strongest…

I was fighting to change my body because I believed that the world around me would change if it did.  I thought maybe if I was skinnier I would feel better about who I was by fitting in and getting the attention and love I was seeking. I thought what would follow would be a sense of true beauty that would keep me from ever being harmed or hurt by others.

But why did I think other people were holding the key to my ability to feel good about myself?  Why did I believe changing my body would change the feelings I had toward myself — and my worth? Why couldn’t I just make effort to feel better about who I was in general?

My eating disorder taught me that finding love is about figuring out how to love yourself first. Feeling confident doesn’t come from other people. Feeling beautiful never follows any physical transformation unless you yourself embark on the emotional journey required to get there.

To all the girls out there struggling to find the body they are looking for — the body they think will bring them amazing love, or a larger amount of happiness than they already have…. the key to changing everything, starts within you…. 

When you want to be a brand new you….

When you want to be a brand new you….

The Brand New Me online course starts in FOUR days…

And it has me thinking about my own journey to self-love..the moment I made a decision to change my life….

Trust me… it wasn’t a small project. I was financially bankrupt, finally out of an unhealthy relationship, lost on my own for the first time, about 60 pounds over weight and so super fed up with every area of my life.

I knew I deserved better and that life wasn’t supposed to be something you “just settled for.” So I decided I was going to do everything in my damn power to create the life I truly deserved.  A life that made me HAPPY.  A life that I could feel appreciative of and love, and take pride in.

That meant I needed to do a lot of changing inside myself.

I had to overcome a lot of limiting beliefs….  stop feeling like a failure, insecure, and worthless and start taking massive action.  I needed to let go of letting other people control my destiny – what they thought of me and what they labeled me as in my life.  I had to discover the tools for changing my emotional state in an instant, start growing my confidence and stop constantly failing my goals over and over and over again.

Basically I had A LOT to learn. And yes, in the beginning all of the things I wanted felt impossible.

Confidence. Happiness. Full self-love.  Healthy relationships. True Love. A stable non chaotic life. A body I was proud of. A healthy lifestyle I enjoyed.

Guess what. I got all of it. It happened. For REAL.

If you are the WIP Girl out there who is still struggling to change her life… the girl who can’t feel good about herself.. the girl who knows she deserves better but can’t figure out HOW to make that change happen…

Get off the hamster wheel gorgeous girl. Make a decision that you deserve better for yourself. Stop setting and start striving. Set your goals and get clear about EXACTLY what you want. And then put on your super girl costume and freaking fight for it girl!

1.Decide you deserve better then the way you have been living.

2. Start believing that you *and only you* have the power to change this.

3. Take massive massive action to create your dream life.

 

The Brand New Me six week online course is starting in four days.. our girls are prepping and preparing for their amazing journeys – setting goals and visualizing what they want to change about their lives….

 

And there is still time left to enroll.

Check out the Brand New Me Course Details here

Everything about this course is focused on showing you how to drastically transform your life, find self confidence and be the version of you that you have been longing to be.

If you read my story about where I was prior to being a life coach and the leader of What is Perfection and the WIP Girl community, you know that my life was a rock bottom rollercoaster disaster. Drugs, Abuse, Eating disorders, Financial disasters, suicide attempts. ALL of it is in my “before WIP resume.”

But guess what? That is NOT me any more. I stopped failing myself years ago. And four years later I have put everything I know into this six week program to help catapult you into that amazing beautiful life you deserve.

There are still 4 Days left to enroll in the Brand New Me Six week online course.

And if you are that girl out there struggling to finally be that version of yourself that you know is in there… go fight for her.

Because remember: Where you are, is NOT where you have to be.

A Self Worth Story – From the Girl Who Lost Everything.

A Self Worth Story – From the Girl Who Lost Everything.

Self Worth is the key to living any happy life. When you don’t feel good about yourself, life pretty much sucks, am I right? Feeling happy is darn difficult when you feel worthless. Feeling confident is basically impossible when you don’t love yourself. And appreciating all the great things life has to offer is simply a day dream when you don’t like the person you are. But wait…

What is Self Worth Anyway?

Basically, for all the insecure girls out there, Self Worth is defined as: “the sense of one’s own value or worth as a person.” But I think if you are reading this article, you can probably identify with all the things that self worth ISN’T. Rather than what it is. Here’s how to tell if you don’t have self worth:

Warning Signs You Need to Love Yourself More:

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You let other people take advantage of you.

You constantly feel like you aren’t good enough.

You compare yourself to other people.

You fear failure, because you think you never achieve anything.

You don’t believe you are good enough for “good things.”

You feel insecure.

You don’t speak up about how you feel.

You are scared of being alone.

You don’t walk away from people who hurt you.

Basically.. you live life stuck, insecure, and feeling scared.

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That is what a LACK of Self Worth is.

And if you’re trying to fix those things, lucky for you, you are in the right place.

 

Having little self worth totally F*’s up your life girl.

If you’re stumbling on this website for the first time and don’t know anything about me or What is Perfection, let just tell you little bit about what this website is. Because it’s ALL About self worth girl. WIP is a place where I teach women how to rebuild their self confidence and create  happy beautiful versions of themselves.. because I know EXACTLY what it is like to live life feeling insecure. and it SUCKS. (you should join the free community for my free self improvement tools P.S.)

Because years ago I WAS THAT GIRL – struggling to feel good, without self worth and completely turning my life upside down trying to feel happy and confident.

I WAS LOOKING FOR LOVE IN ALL THE WRONG PLACES. AND DOING ALL THE WRONG THINGS TO GET IT.

I dated assholes to feel loved. I developed an eating disorder to get the perfect body. I coped with serious depression, suicidal thoughts because I felt like I was never good enough. Yup. Self worth – zero. That was me. Because I deeply loathed myself, I was constantly trying to change who I was in order to feel better. It never worked. (Lucky for you, I actually became a self-loving CHAMP!…. and I’ll show you how to be one too!)

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But in case you are interested, read more about me here:

My Eating Disorder Journey

Being A Rape Victim 

The Full About Me Page

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OKAY COOL. 

MOVING ON:

HOW TO BUILD YOUR SELF WORTH 

 

Learn how to enjoy being alone.

When I didn’t have self worth, I was so scared of being alone. I needed a partner, and I needed to be around friends 24/7. It wasn’t because I was a social person who enjoyed that (even though I do today,) It was because I didn’t really love myself enough to want to spend time with just me! Learning how to be alone with yourself is a scary thing in the beginning. It’s like you are almost spending time with a stranger. But taking baby steps into being independent will help. Slowly, overtime, the more one on one time you get with yourself, the more you will learn about who you are and what makes you wonderful.

Get rid of the labels you put on yourself.

I’ve been through a lot in my life… a lot of bad, not so fun things. For a long time I thought all of those bad things defined me in a “tarnished” way. I was “the girl who was raped,” or “the girl who married a guy who turned out to be a drug dealer.” or the suicidal depressed girl etc. etc. and all those other bad things I’ve been through. I actually carried those labels around with me for a LONG LONG time.

But that was a big problem.

Because when I lived my life thinking I was JUST those things, I was miserable. You may feel this way too. maybe you struggle with your weight and have branded yourself as “the fat girl” or maybe you were “the slut” in high school and you were so bullied about it that you can’t seem to let go of that image. Whatever it is, the labels you put on yourself based on the past experiences you’ve had actually prevent you from being a confident happy person.

You can’t move forward and grow when you are so stuck on the person you once were. Make a list of all those labels and throw them out the window girl. Start asking yourself “who do I want to be” and be that person instead.

Focus on what makes you happy, not on what impresses people.

Yes, for a long time I lived for OTHER people. I picked a career that impressed my parents. I wore clothes because they were “in fashion.” I didn’t pursue passions or hobbies because other people thought they were stupid or not important. And a while back, I actually stayed in a really unhealthy relationship way longer than I should have because I was so worried about disappointing my family. This is a key lesson in self confidence. You need to stop worrying about the rest of the world and build your self worth by focusing on your own happiness. You can check out this post on how to stop caring what other people think if you need help on this one (there’s a free E-guide there for ya)

Start believing that maybe you actually deserve better than the way you have been living.

No one ever taught me how to feel good about myself growing up… In school, they never really teach you how to establish a solid self image. Self Worth really isn’t a part of the school curriculum. And few parents teach their children how to be confident and self loving. We think those qualities are “selfish” am I right?

No. No they aren’t. So it’s time to start thinking differently about self love. And if you are unhappy with your life, then maybe it’s time to reflect and ask yourself, “Am I living based on false beliefs about what happiness is?”

 

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Get rid of your old unhealthy beliefs.

If you believe that you need to lose weight to feel beautiful – there is a problem here.

Do you need to feel important to other people or get noticed by other people to feel good? Why?

If you picked your career because your parents told you that you would make a lot of money – you won’t feel successful. EVER.

Think that your husband is the only person who will ever love you so you don’t walk away from the relationship?

Do you feel like you can’t be yourself because other people won’t like who you are?

Or maybe you are constantly comparing yourself to other people – trying to be as beautiful or as thin or successful as they are.

It’s time to stop.

This learned-behavior is WRONG. It isn’t serving you.

Let’s break that habit and start redefining our self worth.

By teaching ourselves a new way of living.

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-STOP TRYING TO IMPRESS OTHER PEOPLE. START LIVING FOR WHAT MAKES YOU FEEL GOOD. 

-DON’T MAKE DECISION FOR YOUR LIFE BASED ON OTHER PEOPLE’S OPINIONS. ASK YOURSELF “WHAT DO I THINK? WHAT DO I WANT? 

-AND DON’T BELIEVE THAT YOU NEED SOMEONE TO LOVE YOU IN ORDER TO FEEL LOVE.

-FORGET THE PERFECTION STANDARDS SOCIETY HAS CRAFTED FOR BEAUTY. MAKE YOUR OWN. 

-EDUCATE YOURSELF ON SELF LOVE AND SELF WORTH. 

-PRIORITIZE YOURSELF AND RAISE YOUR STANDARDS FOR LIVING. 

-BECOME A PERSON YOU ARE PROUD OF – NOT A PERSON OTHER PEOPLE ARE PROUD TO BE AROUND.

START MAKING MORE DECISIONS. STOP SECOND GUESSING YOURSELF.  

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HOW I FOUND SELF WORTH

So, when I perfected the art of fulfillment, and developed the Perfection Program 30 Day Course based on those principles, so much of my life changed. And over time, something happen inside me.. I felt lighter.. more at peace. And suddenly I felt happier.

I found a new sense of confidence in my ability to make decisions for myself. And I started making more of them.

Following my heart to self love, led me to even more self love. Because I make decisions for my life based on ME. And I actually started making better decisions. Decisions that made me proud. These are the choices that make me feel like I am in control of my life and my future. And there is nothing worth more than that.

And suddenly I was actually in control of my future, my emotions, and my happiness! Legit EVERYTHING about my life changed.

I went on an insane 5 year self love journey. And discovered What is Perfection LLC. Changing myself was never the answer to finding self worth. It was all about changing what I was looking for. And it was within me the whole time.

Yes, the Self Worth Discovery: Is within you too.

If you feel ready to find that self love and make a change for your life, check out the Perfection Program 30 Day Course and make it happen!

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Sign up for Your Free Life Coach Guide! Find Confidence, Feel Beautiful and Transform your Happiness step by step. Make an Amazing Change for Your Life. I'll give you the tools to make it happen!

 

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What is Perfection is the Self Improvement blog for the imperfect girl everywhere. Learn to find happiness, feel beautiful, and be confident in who you are. We all deserve to be happy, and we all deserve to be the best version of us. And we all are truly capable of getting there. Because Perfection Is Impossible. Happiness isn’t. See The Self Improvement E-Guide Collection For Your Life Coaching Guides to Change Your Life Today!

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Which Program Will Change My Life?

Which Program Will Change My Life?

I get asked this question a lot: “What should I enroll in? The Perfection Program, or the Broken to Beautiful Course? Which one is right for me?” In the course section of What is Perfection, there are two big 30 day programs to choose from. So if you’re that girl wanting to enroll in a self improvement program, but you aren’t sure which one is right for you – I’m gonna break it down for ya.

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The Perfection Program and The Broken to Beautiful Course 

-Both are 30 Day programs.

-Both have amazing success stories.

-Both are life transforming.

So which one do you pick? 

SELF IMPROVEMENT PROGRAMS

About the Two Self Improvement Programs

cutehearttealwipThe Perfection Program is a 30 day program for the girl who feels unhappy, insecure, and unbeautiful. In 30 days you set new goals for your life, learn how to let go of limiting beliefs and start rebuilding your confidence. You learn how to redefine “Perfection” so you can start actually fulfilling your dreams of living a perfectly happy life. You get specific and identify exactly what insecurities/fear factors are the cause of you feeling unfulfilled in your life. You re-identify the emotions you are longing for vs. the emotions that you have and create a custom roadmap for feeling happy confident and successful in your life.

cutehearttealwipThe Broken to Beautiful Course is a 30 day program for the girl who wants to stop living in unhealthy unhappy relationship. In 30 days you set new goals for your love life, learn how to let go of the unhealthy limiting relationship beliefs that you’ve established from your past and start rebuilding your confidence. You learn how to let go of the fear and doubt your previous relationship has formed in your life. Create a custom roadmap for happiness and a new future as a single woman, or as a woman who no longer tolerates unhappiness in her love life. Let go of the pain of a past relationship and start healing your heart so you can find true love.

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How The Programs Are The Same:

Whether you enroll in the Perfection Program or the Broken to Beautiful Program,

here’s what will happen in 30 days:

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The Differences Between Broken to Beautiful and the Perfection Program:

So, these programs, while both all encompassing and focusing on self improvement, are tailored to two different groups.

The Perfection Program is really for the girl who just feels unhappy overall in her life. Who feels like she deserves more confidence, and wants to start making positive changes for her life. While she may have been in unhealthy relationships in the past, those relationships are not the driving force of her need to change.

The Broken to Beautiful program is for the girl who is really in need of repair from damaging past relationships. She is so heartbroken from being in unhealthy relationships  that she has had enough and feels ready to change.

In a nut shell, this is the difference between these two programs.

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self improvement course

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So that about does it ladies:

the simple quick breakdown of the two awesome programs that are here to help you transform your life!

Now Go check them out and get started on your journey today!  

 

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Have questions still? Shoot me a note or post a comment below!

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Be Beautiful & Feel Beautiful [Free Worksheet!]

Be Beautiful & Feel Beautiful [Free Worksheet!]

How to feel beautiful when you feel terrible about yourself? Simple. Start thinking differently. Sounds too good too be true huh? Well it isn’t.

Did your mother ever tell you how beautiful you are? Mine told me all the time — boys sometimes did too. But I never believed it. I didn’t look like all the other girls, and I felt like I was different from everyone. Growing up I believed that being beautiful looked a certain way: It was long hair, big boobs, beautiful makeup and long eyelashes. It was a toned body, a flat tummy and a gorgeous smile.

For a while, I thought I had to change how I looked in order to feel beautiful. Then I grew up. And I realized something very important: Becoming a beautiful person is a magical process that starts from within.

You don’t have to change how you look in order to be beautiful. You need to change how you FEEL.

Because you already are beautiful. And if you don’t know it yet, I am here to give you the secret tips for learning how to believe in your gorgeous self.

How to Feel Beautiful What is Perfection

Our False Perception of Beauty

For some reason people believe that you can’t feel beautiful until you have the perfect look — until you are the skinniest, the prettiest, the most successful person you can possibly be.  The truth is we have a backwards approach and perspective to attaining beauty. Feeling beautiful is a “feeling” after all… so wouldn’t it make more sense to define that feeling based on emotion and not physical characteristics?

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So how do we change that?

How do we start redefining our beautiful and actually start feeling beautiful?

It’s simple. Just follow these steps for learning how to feel beautiful and start thinking differently about your gorgeous self.

How to Feel Beautiful What is Perfection

cutehearttealwipMake your “beautiful roadmap.”

This is something I tell all my clients to do. For some reason, many of us have this complicated roadmap for what we believe we need to achieve in order to feel beautiful. We stop defining beauty by emotional traits, and instead, start thinking strictly in the physical form. In order to change that and learn how to feel beautiful and fulfilled by your looks, your first step is to map out all things you believe you need to achieve right now in order to feel gorgeous. When you have your list, you’ll see how crazy complicated it is (I’m betting because most of my clients lists are complicated.) What do you believe is the key to feeling beautiful? Is it long legs, clear skin and a gorgeous slim body? Get clear about all the important physical factors you believe make a beautiful person.

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Recognize how you formed those beliefs.

Once you recognize exactly what you believe is your “definition” of beauty, your next step is to figure out WHY you believe those things. Go through your list of all the physical traits you identify with being beautiful, and figure out the core reasons why you feel that way. What past experiences have you had that forced this limiting belief into your subconscious? In order to learn how to feel beautiful, we need to be able to challenge our current beliefs and develop new ones. The truth is, so many of us believe beauty is a certain way because we have had negative experiences that coined these ideas in our minds. It’s up to us to change it. Write out all the reasons why you believe each of these physical traits you listed are important. Were you bullied for being chubby? Did someone make a comment about your skin growing up? Did a boy make fun of you for having a flat chest? Get real with yourself. And be as specific as possible.

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Discover the emotions behind those beliefs.

Ok, so now it’s time to figure out what emotions you associate with your beautiful roadmap. See that list you created of all those physical things you believe are the key secrets for how to be beautiful? What do each of those things mean to you emotionally? Does a thin body mean a sense of being controlled and connected to yourself? Do you think long hair is feminine and that’s why it is beautiful? Understanding what emotions each of those physical traits brings up is super important – it helps you understand the emotional road map for learning how to feel beautiful. So for each physical trait, cross it out and redefine it with an emotional trait that you most connect it with. (There are some tips in the worksheet below)

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Create a new strategy for how to feel beautiful.

Okay coolness.. Now comes my favorite part for learning how to feel beautiful: The moment when you start to actually CHANGE your view on what it means! Now that you have all those sexy ass emotions listed out on a piece of paper, it’s time to discover new extra ways to create that feeling in your life. So you thought long hair was feminine ? What other ways can you feel feminine? If you thought feeling thin gave you a sense of strength or empowerment, what other things can you do each day to feel that way? Get my point? See where this is going?

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Okay. Awesome.

Now go get the free worksheet for creating your own Beauty Roadmap and learning how to feel beautiful for realz yo!

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Sign up for Your Free Life Coach Guide! Find Confidence, Feel Beautiful and Transform your Happiness step by step. Make an Amazing Change for Your Life. I'll give you the tools to make it happen!

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What is Perfection is the Self Improvement blog for the imperfect girl everywhere. Learn to find happiness, feel beautiful, and be confident in who you are. We all deserve to be happy, and we all deserve to be the best version of us. And we all are truly capable of getting there. Because Perfection Is Impossible. Happiness isn’t. See The Self Improvement E-Guide Collection For Your Life Coaching Guides to Change Your Life Today!

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