Understanding behaviours and thought patterns and where they come from

Hello Everyone!

It feels like years since I have written! Life has been pretty busy and I don’t really have the time or energy to write much. There is so much I would like to tell you all about, my week away in Lanzarote with the triathlon club, how my nursing degree and placement is going, moving out of university halls and so much more. But it will have to wait as the topic I have chosen to write about today is how gaining insight into where thoughts and behaviours stem from and why a person may think or act in certain ways can help them to make changes or gain an understanding why difficulties may arise.

Over the years I have gone through phases of being overly anxious and wanting to control everything to phases of being really low and not having the energy or desire to do anything. Overtime I have come to understand how anxiety/low moods/depression can cause me to act on certain urges or want to go back to certain behaviours.

When I am anxious and life is stressed and pressured I tend to have a great need for control. When this is the predominant feeling I have noticed I crave restricting food again, I crave control over something which is entirely in my power. My appetite also drops when I am anxious, I tend to do more, I try and be organised,tidy,I  sleep less. When I first started to struggle with eating I was also a very anxious person, control over my eating made me feel calmer and empowered.

When I was predominantly in low moods/depressed I would struggle more with Bulimia. With binging/purging. With that came a feeling of complete loss of control. When I struggle with binging or purging everything feels a mess. I crave control but I cannot bring ,myself to do anything. My life becomes messy and I just do not care.

The worst time of my life was when I desperately tried to gain control of the bulimia by using restriction again. Then it was a combination of the two. One half of my brain fighting for control, the other fighting against it.

The past two weeks I have been quite anxious. Placement/university has been busy, I have moved out of halls and I have found myself really not that hungry. Not being able to fit in as much training as I like is hard to as exercise makes me feel calmer and better.Physically I am doing it all but mentally I feel horrible. I need control and I do not know where to find it.I can see my thoughts turning to food and restriction again and it feels frightening because I cannot for so many reasons. My degree, people around me who I do not want to affect. I know I would struggle with training and become weaker.

And yet a part of me still believes I could do it, that possibly a relapse would be compatible with the rest of life around me.

Understanding that feeling anxious and wanting control pushes me to want to restrict is quite helpful. As I understand where the thought and urge stems from and I can rationalise that eating disorders never ever gave me any control or piece of mind. They may have helped me cope with certain things but they destroyed many things too.

I find it hard eating my meals alone at the moment. I want to restrict but I do not, I eat and then I get the backlash of thoughts that I should not have. I just want to switch my head off.

I am tired, really really tired of it.Making an effort to stay healthy at the moment feels draining.

I hate myself for being so pathetic too, I have so many good things going on, I cannot deny that and yet I crave self destruction.

Probably the thought I hate the most is I wish sometimes I did not have to worry about how it would affect others, that people just did not care and I could get on with it.

But I do care, very very much and as much as it is tough right now I am very much trying.

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2 thoughts on “Understanding behaviours and thought patterns and where they come from

  1. Glad you are writing out your thoughts and your progress. No one’s journey is going to be perfect, and no one gets to skip over the bad days; you get through them the best you can for that day and look forward to better ones. The mind is very complicated especially in the midst of transitions. Be gentle with yourself. Find something you look forward to–a hot bath, a beautiful night sky, a good, long stretch, and take a moment for yourself to reset your mind. You got this!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. cmthunbe

    I understand how you are feeling. Just remember that you are not pathetic and it is ok to feel stressed out! Maintaining recovery long-term is harder than starting. I too wish for restriction because it feels comfortable but sometimes we owe it to our bodies to be nourished and rested.

    Exercise makes me feel calmer too, but if trying to fit it in is stressful then know your body will be fine with some time off for a second. You will come back to it stronger than ever. Best, Carly

    Liked by 1 person

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