EDF News

‘Loving You’ Workshops

Self-esteem has an effect on every aspect of a person’s life. When you feel positive about yourself you are more likely to engage in life, enjoy social interactions and be successful in your endeavours.

Low self -esteem comes hand in hand with an eating disorder. Sufferers often become very isolated and their self- hatred is manifested with a lack of self- care and nurturing.

I remember at one stage of my illness, I wouldn’t allow myself to show myself any form of self-care. I hated myself so intensely that I felt that I should look on the outside as awful as I was and felt on the inside. This was a belief that I spent a lot of time challenging, and which eventually faded, however moving back into that routine of spending some time each day nurturing myself was quite difficult. It was painful, as I didn’t believe that I deserved to care for myself, but also because I had forgotten how too! How to actually style my hair and put mascara on was foreign to me! Today, doing nice things for myself, like getting a facial, buying a new lipstick or getting a great new hair do, is something that is very important to me. I value showing myself love and respect. I have fought a hard battle to get to where I am today, and so I feel that I do deserve some TLC.

Beginning in July at the EDF office we will be holding monthly ‘Loving You’ workshops, designed to empower sufferers to care and respect themselves and improve their self -esteem. They will be run by professional beauty therapists, makeup artists and hairdressers; with experience in eating disorders and social work.

The workshops are a fun way to learn the tricks of the trade, which can help sufferers feel confidant when trying to reconnect socially.

Come and spend a day with myself and some friends and we will play with all those girly things that we love so much! We can work out the best eyeshadow to wear that will bring out your beautiful eyes, or a new way to wear your hair that lets your face shine!

Can’t wait to see you there!

Annalise Pippard

If you are interested in attending the ‘Loving You’ workshops, please contact the EDF office on (02) 9412 4499 or edf@edf.org.au.

Writing Workshops

Creative writing can be a great way to help manage overwhelming emotions, and provide clarity to thoughts. Therefore, it can be a very beneficial medium to utilise during recovery, or as a way of gaining closure towards the end of the recovery process.

I know for myself when I was in recovery, and even still today, when things felt too overwhelming, I would sit down and try to write about how I was feeling. This forced me to slow down my thoughts, which in turn lessened my distress. I also used writing as a way to purge (a much healthier and more pleasant option then putting my head down the toilet). All the repulsion and disgust for myself that I was feeling at the time, I would pour out onto paper – sometimes for hours – until the urge to purge had passed. For me now, writing is a very cathartic experience. I still use writing to make sense of how I am feeling, and now, also to explore my past experiences. I also find that the more I write creatively and draw on many different aspects of my life, the more understand I about myself – a nice gift that recovery and writing has given me!

Beginning in May at the EDF office, myself and accomplished author Melinda Hutchings will be running regular creative writing workshops for people dealing with eating disorders, with the goal of deepening peoples understanding of eating disorders – within themselves and others.

The aim of these workshops is to help sufferers use writing as a way of healing and develop a creative outlet and a way to express and make sense of their emotions and thoughts. We will be focusing on free writing as a way to access honest thought and emotion. EDF will also be offering a continuing mentorship program, for people that would like further assistance in developing their work, whereby participants can have regular contact with people who have writing, editing and eating disorders experience. Works developed from these workshops, may also be included in the Eating Disorders Anthology (upon authors approval).

Melinda Hutchings (Fighting for Life: Anorexia and the Road to Recovery, [2000] and How to Recover from Anorexia and Other Eating Disorders [2001]) is truly an inspiration and a very special person to work with. She has a wealth of knowledge about writing, always provides such deep insight into recovery, and exudes so much positivity. EDF (and myself in particular) are very excited that she is a part of this project, and I believe 100% that anybody who spends some time with her, will walk away with a truly wonderful gift.

I hope to see you there!

Annalise

If you would like further details about the creative writing workshops please contact the EDF office on (02) 9412 4499 or edf@edf.org.au