July 2017 - Monthly News & Tips
IN THIS ISSUE
A core misunderstanding of eating disorders is that people can think of the number they want to weigh, become that weight and be healthy. It’s also a core misunderstanding of weight-control programs.
Characteristics of anorexia and, oftentimes, weight loss center around the body trying to obtain a weight goal that the body itself does not want to reach. In both cases, the body gets the final word, not our idea of what it should be.
The desire to change our weight can come from all over. What I am hearing is an overwhelming belief that your brain can control your body and you can demand your body do things whether your body wants to or not. There is essentially no data to support this belief.
With weight loss, we know about 95 percent of all people who go on diets are unsuccessful at losing the weight. Is this because they have no willpower? Does this mean that 95 percent of people who want to weigh a certain number are quitters? This seems unlikely.
Many people in this same group are accomplished in their lives, have excellent relationships, good jobs and are leaders in their communities. The more likely explanation is that just thinking you “should” be at a certain number is completely inadequate to make your body want to be that number.
In the eating disorders world, the idea that we can dictate what our bodies should weigh is not just wrong, but potentially fatal. In eating disorders, the pursuit of a certain number is likely to produce medical complications that may lead to illness or death.
Clearly, the social messages we get about what we “should” weigh, what is attractive and what would make our lives better, may be overwhelming in telling us that we should weigh less than we do. Our bodies, however, have some very clear ideas of their own and don't respond to the societal "should" well at all.
Acceptance of our body’s set point and living in concert with a weight at which our bodies and minds function well is a core feature of true recovery.
Mark Warren, M.D.
Chief Medical Officer, The Emily Program
Jennie Laskow, Therapist and Clinical Manager, St. Louis Park, MN
Jennie has been a part of The Emily Program for more than 10 years. After serving in various roles as a therapist, she now holds the position of clinical manager at our St. Louis Park location.
In her role, she enjoys interacting with clinicians and integrating new therapists into our team. To her, it’s rewarding to be in a position where she helps people garner success in their different positions within the organization.
“TEP has been both my motivation for hard work and my reward,” she said. “It is easy to work hard when everyone around you does the same, and the opportunities to accompany clients on their journeys here is really the reason I do what I do.”
In addition, Jennie sees outpatient clients. Many come to her either nervous because they have never been in therapy before or have past therapy experiences that were unhelpful. She works hard to put them at ease, help them feel safe and help foster hope throughout the therapy process.
“I really feel like I’m doing my best work when I can help clients make changes in their lives leading to less suffering and more joy,” she said.
Jennie received her undergraduate degree at the University of Minnesota and went on to earn a Master’s in Counseling Psychology at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN.
Learn more about Jennie and why we think she stands out!
TEP: What can clients expect during a therapy session with you?
Jennie: Clients can enter into therapy expecting that I will be here to accompany them on their journey. I do not have a prescribed approach to therapy, but I do draw from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, and the Adaptive Processing Model.
I believe that each of us has an ability and propensity to move toward health and wellness. I hope I can meet my clients halfway, we can learn from each other, and I can provide support and guidance through their change process toward that sense of wellness.
TEP: What’s your secret to building trust with clients?
Jennie: No secrets here. It takes time to build trust. I will show up, work to provide a safe space and we will take all the time we need to build trust between us.
TEP: What are you most looking forward to this summer?
Jennie: I look forward to spending time with my family out in the sun this summer. I have two boys who play soccer and baseball, so we won’t have any trouble making that happen.
Join us to hear inspiring stories of recovery from staff, former clients and community members. Recovery nights are free and open to the public. Upcoming dates*:
St. Paul, MN (Toogood): Tues. August 8. Begins at 6:00 p.m. at 2230 Como Ave., St. Paul, MN, 55108
*Please note that the Recovery Night originally scheduled for 7/11/17 at our Como site has been canceled.
The Emily Program is growing! We are currently recruiting for caring and compassionate professionals to join our team!
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"Believe you can and you're halfway there." -Theodore Roosevelt