Willing Ways has worked with a lot of men and women struggling with overeating, chronic dieting and body hating. Of all the things that we love about our facility is that each client comes with their own unique story. After hearing thousands of these stories, you see some universal themes emerging.
Our clients have taught us a lot about cultural obsessions with losing weight. Our take on this is that these lessons will help people in the cycle of dieting-overeating-shame-self-hatred cycle. The important thing to remember is that there is always a solution.
Halima Noon is working at Willing Ways as a clinical psychologist. She has done her MS in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Beaconhouse National University, Lahore. Her published MS thesis includes current trends of materialistic values and compulsive buying among young adults. She is a Certified Reiki Practitioner from Ijaz Psychiatric Institute. Halima is also an artist by profession.
Editor: Halima Noon
We expected to work with a lot of people who are classified as obese or overweight. However, this turned out to be the opposite. Body hatred does not come with body size.
We are made to believe that our body should look how it is ‘supposed’ to look. This is not the truth. You may look back at one of your old pictures from a time when you were thin and wish if you could look like that again. However, this is not the case because our body image has nothing to do with our weight.
We have seen a lot of patients who have come to us after psychotherapy treatments in which they have made changes and meaningful progress in many areas of their life but even when the anxiety and depression improves, the body issues often remain. Overeating may often be triggered by underlying emotional problems and resolving these emotional problems may not be enough to free them from the disturbed relationship with our body and food.
Fighting against your own body will always be a losing battle as we would be fighting against those physiological drives which have been developed through evolution. If we harness these drives in a way that would guide our eating, it may serve a powerful tool leading us out of difficult situations. This process involves compassion, acceptance and mindful eating and when you can get there, it will free you.