Sunday, April 27, 2008

Telling The Truth About Body Image and Eating

No denying, mid-life is a time when most of us struggle with some aspect of our body image. Most of us have put on a little…or a lot…of weight, our metabolism is slowing down, our sex lives may be in decline because we don’t feel good about our bodies, we dress frumpily in shapeless clothes because we don’t like our bodies. Any of this sound familiar?

To explore the topic, I had a great conversation today with Lee Khoury, who is a counselor specializing in women with body image and eating issues. I was very impressed with her philosophy and her approach because I think she aims at the root of the problem.

Lee believes our relationship with our body and food is often an unhappy result of areas where our lives are out of balance. So, she begins by helping her clients explore the secrets they keep about their eating and their lives. The behaviors with food that they have never told anyone The traumas they are not dealing with, the bad relationships, the intolerable things they tolerate, the things have they ‘settled’ for. The stale areas of their lives.

She helps clients understand that food is not their lover, or their enemy. It isn’t going to fulfill their deepest desires. It is not a substitute for healthy relationships around them.

It’s a basic tenet, wouldn’t you agree, that if you can’t shine a light on a problem, the chances of fixing it are not high?

Lee excels at gently and empathetically helping women bring these issues into the open where they can begin taking baby steps to build the confidence they need to deal with them. She believes mid-life is a prime time to rebalance lives that have gotten out of whack, to redraw boundaries, and renegotiate areas of our lives that are problematic. She connects clients to their healthier selves.

She focuses on helping women transform at the spirit level, not at the superficial level of calorie counting and dieting (which she is against by the way).

Doesn’t that sound reasonable? Lee has walked her talk. Several years ago she re-negotiated boundaries in her life that had gotten out of hand. She doesn’t pretend it was easy but it has made a tremendous difference.

Lee does workshops and seminars on this subject and she is currently writing a book called Rebalance Your Life After 40: Create a New Relationship with Food.

I can’t wait to read it.

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