Assess Your Motivations

You want to change something about yourself or something in your life.

So… why haven’t you done it yet?

Why hasn’t it happened?

Ask yourself why. Do you have any motivations? Or do your motivations not feel important enough to pursue the change?

If I asked myself 6 months ago, or a year ago (or at any time whilst I was in denial about EDNOS), I would have said that my main motivation in life was be thin and stay thin. After all, I thought that being thin was the route of my happiness. But at what cost? By damaging my mentality and wellbeing? Just because somebody appears to look healthy, or happy for that matter, it doesn’t mean that they are. If you are happy with every aspect of your life within your control then you, my friend, have won your inner battle and faced your fears. If you are sat questioning why you aren’t, then ask yourself whether you’ve allowed ambivalence to steal your power for too long. Why are you afraid to make the change?

Think of something in your life that you aren’t completely happy with. Make a list of what motivates you to change it. Now write down all the reasons why you haven’t started to make that change yet. Are the reasons listed in front of you actually good, or are they simply just excuses? What are you afraid of? Something in your brain is telling you what might happen, what might go wrong, how it’s not possible. Stop listening to ambivalence and take note of what you could be faced with, what you can overcome, how you will pursue it. It is possible.

If I ask myself what motivates me to get over this eating disorder I could say several things. My partner is the main one – I don’t want to lie to him anymore or cause him any more upset. Our relationship is better than ever. I don’t want my hair to fall out again now it’s started to repair itself. I want children at some point and considering I now don’t seem to have periods and have been recently diagnosed with polycystic ovaries (PCOS), I realize how important it is to keep my body healthy.

I could go on, but my list would still be missing one significant thing at the top. ME. You can’t change yourself for anyone or anything but yourself, no matter how important the other factors may seem. You have to want to do it for YOU. Yes all the other motivators are an important part of the change but ultimately, if you don’t actually want to do something, you’re never going to do it and it will never change. You must be driven from within. I will learn to defeat ambivalence and I will change.

It’s hard to picture a new way of life when giving into your ambivalence is all you’ve known for so long. I’m still coming to terms with it myself. But aren’t we stronger than that doubtful voice muttering inside our head? Think about it…what do you really have to lose? There is so much more out there if you open yourself up to the possibility of something new. Make a new list of what you WILL achieve with change. Happiness is only the very start of it.

Amy Whittle

My name is Amy, I’m 22, and I’ve been living with an eating disorder on and off for 9 years. A few months ago I was finally honest about it with my loved ones. I am now on my challenging journey through recovery and have started an online blog to help aid me along the way and hopefully provide some positivity and motivation for others who are going through a similar thing.

Start By Being Honest

An obvious title, right?

Sorry to say it, but as scary as it may seem right now, being honest with yourself is the hardest yet most essential part of recovery.

Some of you reading this probably aren’t even sure what you need to be honest about yet. But by asking yourself that very question you may be one step closer than you realize to changing your life for the better.

Take a minute. Why did you click on this? Perhaps you can relate to me, are interested in my other posts, or are wondering where to go next. I never searched for anything eating disorder related until after I spoke out to my loved ones and accepted I ‘might’ have a problem.

Once I had, I found out so much more about myself that I’d never before taken notice of. I have started to recognize what it is saying and I am learning to overlook its negative thoughts and replace them with my own feelings of love, positivity, and happiness. I will be honest and say yes I am ambivalent about facing my disorder, but I know it’s because I’m scared to face my fears. That is how I know I’m still learning to recover. After all, anyone can give advice, but we all know the hardest advice to take is your own.

So you’ve started to read this and have opened yourself up to the idea that you might have a problem, you might need support, you might want to change. Trust in yourself. You know it’s time to be honest. If you haven’t yet said whatever it is out loud, then say it now…

Hard isn’t it. Do you hear that ambivalence shouting out? ‘What problem’. ‘What eating disorder’. You’ve become the master of deceit, a liar by default, and all because of what? You’ve listened to it for too long. All this covering up has become exhausting. I don’t want to trick myself anymore and I don’t want to produce anymore lies. Don’t rob yourself of your true identity. Don’t con everyone around you that you aren’t suffering. It’s okay to be human…we all have our hang-ups.

If you don’t feel ready yet to share your story with someone you trust, then for now just respect yourself enough to be open and honest about what’s really going on.

Write it down. Say it out loud. You are not alone.

It’s time to take back control, instill your inner power, and begin your journey of happiness. A whole new world of excitement, love, and laughter is out there waiting for you.

Amy Whittle

My name is Amy, I’m 22, and I’ve been living with an eating disorder on and off for 9 years. A few months ago I was finally honest about it with my loved ones. I am now on my challenging journey through recovery and have started an online blog to help aid me along the way and hopefully provide some positivity and motivation for others who are going through a similar thing.

Aged Out Of Boredom

It’s quite interesting to note that many able-bodied people I have come across have told me that they can’t imagine living like I do.

Meaning they could not imagine leading a disabled life.

To me, of course, that sounds sort of funny because this is the only life I have ever known. I will be the first person to tell you that the disabled life isn’t easy and not for the weak or the faint at heart. To be fair, though, no one’s life is easy. Everyone is thrown their fair share of curve balls and has their fair share of storms to trudge through.

Of course, when you are disabled, it does add to the frustration because you must adapt things to work for you. This is especially true when it comes to entertainment and eliminating boredom when you are unable to work a normal 9-5 job. I’ll be honest, in the beginning, and in my teenage years, I was not as efficient at entertaining myself as I am now. When I look back on what I wrote as a teen, it makes me happy that I am no longer so unhappy and bored with the current state of my life. It makes me glad that I have, for the most part, aged out of boredom.

I am homebound for the most part during the week because my parents and the rest of my family do have work. Many people cringe at the sound of the words homebound because it sounds like you are stuck. I am in stuck in the sense that I am unable to drive and cannot go to stores or anything independently. However, I am not stuck mentally.

Since choosing to write as my niche, which by the way, was the best thing for me, I no longer have much time to think about being bored. I am always busy occupying my mind whether it be with writing, reading, or coloring. I write for two different sites, and in December, I will be writing for a third.

I also contribute to my own personal blog when I feel like writing something quick and easy. My personal blog is where I do most of my freehand work, which is used to improve my skill. After all, even the best writers in the industry need the practice to keep on top of their craft.

I can imagine though to someone who is freely able to wake up and drive their car to a normal office job that someone’s life like mine may sound like torture. The truth of the matter is it’s not. I love writing, especially when it means I am impacting others. I don’t just write for myself. I write for the entire disabled population and all my other readers. To me, though, my life is just as normal as everyone else’s. I simply do not see it as boring or traumatic. I see my life as taking what I have been given and making the best out of my circumstances.

Living with chronic conditions in addition to fatigue and everything else that comes along with Cerebral Palsy makes working very difficult, if not near impossible. I do not let this fact rain on my parade or ruin my life because I figure the work I am doing from home is making just as much if not more of an impact than a simple clerical job. I see writing as my talent and one that I am infinitely blessed with.

This does admittedly make my life a lot easier. For those of us with disabilities, there are so many obstacles and hoops to jump through in the real world. If you find something you can do from home and you think it makes an impact, jump on it! Even if you are not able to make money right away that is okay. What truly matters most is if you are happy.

Sure, there are times when my life gets in the way, and I wish that I did not have to be dependent on others for things. It is mighty hard not to feel like an inconvenience when you are required to lean on others. However, for the most part, I see my life as the blessing that will only continue to positively foster & grow.

Karla Culbertson

Karla is a 33 year old independent writer. She is wheelchair dependent due to Cerebral Palsy, chronic pain, and hip dysplasia, but she does not let that stop her from enjoying life. It is Karla’s goal in life to inspire and uplift others. She loves writing positive blog posts that may have the potential of inspiring others and bettering their lives.

An Act Of Kindness Can Change Someone’s Life

Many of you don’t know this about me but outside of writing, I am an advocate for children and adults with Cerebral Palsy.

In March of this year, I started working closely with two other advocates. To be truthful, when I first found them I was so nervous to throw myself out there- the questions I kept asking myself over and over: Are they going to like me?  How am I going to be treated?

Well, looking back now, I’m kicking myself for being so nervous and asking those questions because both of them and the team have treated me with so much love and respect. They share mostly all of my work and say some pretty great things about all of the things I write- and for that, I’m thankful 100x- I knew from then on I had found my CP family.

You heard me say, team and family, I know what you’re thinking, “what do they call this team”? Can you really feel like family if you decided to get on board?” To answer both your questions, they call the team CP Dream Team and we are definitely like a family, so yes if you wanted to get involved you will truly feel like part of a family. And the advocates make sure we always stick together.

Every year, shirts with 250 names to represent the entire team are sold. I decided to buy one for the first time this year. Little did I know when I ordered I didn’t pay attention to the final total, $60.00.  The total for one was 30 I was questioning it, but I thought ok maybe it costs 30 more dollars to ship or something –no big deal.

When my order finally came, my dad looked at the package curiously. When I looked over at him, I saw the puzzled look on his face.

“What’s the matter dad,” I asked

He replied, “Nothing. But the package says there are two medium black shirts inside.

Silence.

“Two???” I thought “I didn’t order two.”

Maybe that’s why it cost so much…..

I wanted to keep the shirt at first- but I decided to do something else.

I decided to donate it to someone on the team.

So I messaged one of the founders and told her the mistake that happened with my order, and explained what I wanted to do with the extra one. She thought that was a great Idea and said that she would help me find someone to donate it to. Not even an hour later she messaged me back with good news, she had found someone

She explained that it was a mom and her daughter. The daughter had just had surgery, and all of the mom’s money that she saved for a shirt had to go to medical bills and expenses.  I was also informed that the mom ALWAYS orders a shirt every year, and this year, because of her daughter’s surgery, she couldn’t afford one this year and was super disappointed.  So the lucky person to get that shirt happened to be her.

So I sent the shirt in a package, included a special note and picture of myself. The mother received the surprise a few days later and I was crying because of how happy she was. I was crying because she and her daughter would be able to celebrate World CP Day with the rest of us this year.

The mom came to me through Facebook and told me the shirt I donated it her made her whole day and year. Hearing that directly to my face and coming from the recipient herself let me know I did something good for someone else.

And it made me feel so good.

My lesson for all of you today, a small act of kindness can not only make you feel good about yourself, it can make that person’s day. Do some good every day.  Whether it’s waving, smiling or helping someone.  YOU can be the sunshine or rainbow in someone’s cloud. All you need to do is an act of kindness- it’s that simple.

 

Juliana Ruggiero

Juliana is 18 and fresh out of High school. She graduated with High honors. Writing is something she really enjoys doing and everyone that knows her tells her she has a gift for it. Juliana is a hopeless Italian food addict, loves meeting new people and making new friends. She is very laid back and easy going. Juliana is here to inspire everyone and give it her all. She doesn’t have a bad bone in her body. Her career began in July of 2016 after reaching out and offering to be interviewed for The Abler Blog. Since that interview, after seeing all the positive feedback she was getting from everyone, it pushed her to do more with her writing! Pushing herself to do more has lead Juliana to some of the most kind and supportive people she could ask for! She is grateful that she took that “leap of faith.”

The Unsocial Reality of ‘Social’ Media

What’s actually social about ‘social’ media?

Sitting behind a screen and flicking through other people’s lives is far from ‘social’, and if you’re anything like me, I feel far from sociable after a fair few scrolls.

Another night of half watching TV whilst numbingly swiping through my Instagram and Facebook feed and I’m wondering why I’m feeling low all curled up in bed on an evening…again.

It’s taken me a long time to realize there is a pattern establishing here, but tonight, as I’m reflecting more on my thoughts and feelings, I’m 99% sure that I’ve seen a skinny girl in an amazing dress and that has triggered my current pit of despair.  Oh yes, there she is. Wow, and another angle.

Either consciously or subconsciously I’ve probably done this more times than I can even remember and I know I’m likely not the only one. You can’t help but compare yourself to these people online. Whether it’s a mate, or a celeb, or simply someone you haven’t seen since school, for some reason we feel the need to follow their life publicised via social media. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not criticising these people for uploading body shots. Hey, who doesn’t enjoy posting the odd selfie? But it is this readily available platform for comparison and self-criticism that enables individuals’ body image and self-esteem to plummet day-in-day-out. It’s a force of habit. I don’t even flick through these ‘stories’ out of interest, (the art of scrolling seems to have become second nature), so why am I letting it impact on my self-esteem and body image so much?

I’ve decided to help myself on my journey of recovery. I’m putting down my phone and I’m banning myself from the torture of scrolling through endless feeds every night. I need to take back control of my emotions and start accepting that if I can’t stop comparing myself to every other girl out there then how am I ever meant to accept myself for who I am. We should embrace individuality and learn to love ourselves for ourselves. I should be able to appreciate other peoples’ attractiveness without feeling threatened. I should be able to walk into a bar, confident with my appearance, without feeling intimidated by every other girl in sight. Stop comparing your ‘likes’ to hers. What the hell does a pixelated number count for anyway? Your thoughts are what makes you, and with the right set of positive ones, you might just start to recognize how amazing you really do look today, and every other day for that matter!

 

 

 

 

 

Amy Whittle

My name is Amy, I’m 22, and I’ve been living with an eating disorder on and off for 9 years. A few months ago I was finally honest about it with my loved ones. I am now on my challenging journey through recovery and have started an online blog to help aid me along the way and hopefully provide some positivity and motivation for others who are going through a similar thing.