Day 4 – The gift of writing
On the fourth day of my gratitude list, I feel thankful for the gift of writing, specifically journaling, during my recovery from Binge-Eating Disorder. Sure, I was always a writer — penning short stories and poems and writing “Dear Diary” entries since I was nine — but being asked by my therapist to start keeping a journal of my thoughts during my recovery was so helpful. First of all, it helped me identify patterns in my thinking and my behavior. Second, I was able to see progress over time and eventually started what I called a “Balance Inventory”, a chronicle of how I was tending to my physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health each day. A typical entry in that inventory would look like this:
Day 25 –
Physical – went for a 1/2 mile walk; enjoyed the exercise and noticed my mood improve afterwards
Mental – read an article about aphasia for work
Emotional – called my friend when I felt an urge to binge; asserted my needs to a co-worker
Spiritual – made a list of all my favorite hymns from when I was young
Although I don’t keep a balance inventory anymore, I occasionally check in with myself to find out how I’m doing in each of those areas. And it was that very balance inventory that became the start of my book (Getting Out of B.E.D.: Overcoming Binge-Eating Disorder One Day at a Time). I still journal, do creative writing (often writing lyrics that my partner sets to music), and blog. So, I’m pretty thankful today for the gift of writing and the role it played in my recovery.