Yoga Is More Than Posing.

“If you can control the fluctuations of the mind you will experience Yoga,” says one yoga Sutra.

When I found out that I would be going through the treatment program here at Inner Door for a week, I was excited. I get to do yoga for a week for work! How awesome is that?

I came to my first yoga session very anxious. I was starting a new job and I was nervous about the yoga. But after I walked into that yoga room and spent an hour on that mat, I discovered that yoga is more than just physically demanding, it is a mentally focused exercise that challenges your body and mind simultaneously.

During my week in the Inner Door program, I learned that yoga is all about non-judgement of yourself and others. It’s meant to clear your mind and challenge you to become present in the very moment you’re in. This is often difficult to do in today’s world. We’re constantly surrounded by so much noise that it’s hard to be present, especially when you’ve got your smartphone in your hands in and your tablet in the other.

The week that I was in treatment program, they were focusing on the sixth chakra-the third eye. It was all about being mindful and present in the moment, focusing on how you feel in that moment. By the end of the session I realized how relaxed I was. My mind wasn’t racing a million words a minute and I was able to be in the moment. I wasn’t worried about responding to all the texts and emails on my phone. I was just able to enjoy where I was right then and there.

While yoga relaxes you and you have this moment of calmness and relaxation, it also brings you to a point of confrontation with yourself. You’re forced to face your feelings in that moment and confront them, whether they be good or bad. It may become an emotional time, having to deal with certain feelings. Although at that moment it may be hard or uncomfortable dealing with those feelings, afterward it is very rewarding.

For example, at times I was feeling insecure and I was forced to examine those feelings and get to the root of them. Why was I feeling insecure? What am I feeling insecure about? And after the session, we were able to talk about these feelings. We were able to process them and overcome them.

It also helps you to restore a relationship with your body. You’re able to become aware of your thoughts and feelings, and eventually be able to understand and trust them.

I encourage everyone to try yoga at least once, even if you are skeptical of the idea. Get outside of your box and try something new. Take a group of friends to try it out, or even watch a video and do it in the privacy of your own home. You don’t have to become a master of yoga or even like it. It may teach you something about yourself, or just give you an hour or relaxation. Let the practice of yoga help you uncover feelings that you didn’t know were there and deal with those feelings. Don’t let the fear of trying something new and the way you might look from letting you experience the feelings that are within you.

Namaste.

Beyond the Bathing Suit

Women_in_Bathing_Suits_North_Africa_1944[1]Written by Alexis S., Alumni Member of Reconnect with Food program at Inner Door Center®

It’s been three and a half years since I graduated Inner Door Center’s program. While my health and happiness have greatly increased, recovery has been a dance of a couple of steps forward and a couple of steps back. Summer, a time of bikinis and BBQs, has always been a time of anxiety and disorder. There were years when the season was marked by restriction and other years that were marked by binging and purging. Even after three years of recovery, summer is still a challenging time of year for me.

I would love to write that this year I am able to put on my bathing suit without hesitation and confidently strut my stuff. I would love to write that I navigate the family BBQs and trips to Mackinac City for fudge and caramel corn without fretting. However, even now, there are times when it is tempting to slip back into old habits.

This past weekend, when I put on my bathing suit, familiar and oh-so-unkind thoughts about my body popped up, making me want to run and hide. On the boat, surrounded by coolers and snack bags, I felt trapped and the rising panic tempted me to escape in the disordered world of restricting and binging.

Luckily, I have spent hours on my yoga mat, preparing for moments like this. In poses like chair and pigeon, I’ve practiced on staying present in moments of discomfort. In triangle pose and airplane pose, I’ve practiced accepting where my body is. Breath by breath, I’ve put principles of non-judgement, acceptance, and balance into practice on my mat and the more I practice, the more easily these principles translate off the mat.

So, as old thoughts and habits threatened to unsettle and distress, I took a breath and took notice of what was arising. I allowed myself to experience the discomfort, knowing that eventually the moment would pass… and it did. Though there were uncomfortable moments that day, there were also moments of laughter and joy, moments that just a few years ago, I would have been too preoccupied to experience.

Every once in a while, my friends and I end the day by watching summer fireworks light up the sky. This past weekend, as I watched the sky erupt in explosions of colors, I sent the universe a whisper of thanks for my own freedom from the shackles of disorder.

Tips for Navigating Swimsuit Season

  1. Take your time finding a swimsuit that you feel comfortable in. There are many different styles and it may take time to find one that you like. Be patient.
  2. Bring a friend to shop with you, someone who supports your recovery and can help you through the process.
  3. You are your own worst critic. Be generous and consistent with positive affirmations for yourself.
  4. Take a deep breath and let go of some worry & anxiety. Those are too heavy to carry around at the beach and the pool.
  5. And dive in. Even if that just means dipping your toes in. You got this.

Struggling with body image and your relationship with food? We’re here to help you! Call Inner Door Center® today at 248-336-2868 for an initial assessment or learn more about our programs at http://www.innerdoorcenter.com.

Keeping Gratitude in Your Daily Life

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Gratitude: noun, the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.

Focusing on the negative is easier than focusing on the foreign feelings of positivity and thankfulness. Personally, I know that most days, gratitude is hard to come by. Whether it is myself, people I know or strangers on the street, it seems that everyone has an issue with this idea of gratitude. Showing gratitude toward others is important, but showing gratitude to oneself is even more valuable. There are many ways to practice this throughout the recovery process, such as writing in a gratitude journal, turning negative thoughts into positives and working to spread gratitude to others once it is found within yourself.

While at the Inner Door Center®, clients are sometimes sponsored through the partial hospitalization program by generous donors when insurance stops paying. Having clients write gratitude letters to these donors not only helps the donor see they are making a difference, but shows the client they are not alone in their journey to find gratitude within themselves.

Gratitude Journal

Buy a fun journal or decorate an old one with inspiring quotes or pictures that make you happy. Then, start with the date at the top and write AT LEAST one thing that happened that day that you are thankful for. Some days will be filled with great things and others you may have to fight to find one. Sometimes the entries will have great examples like, I am grateful for my friend, family and job. Other entries will only have, I am grateful for this pen. Write as little of as much as necessary.

Play around with it, get personal and write! And hey, even Oprah writes in a gratitude journal! :) 

Negative to Positive

Writing in your gratitude journal will show you that even in the darkest days, there is still a little sunshine. Though turning negative thoughts to positives seems easy in theory, we know that it is a constant struggle to keep the negativity away. But turning that one small positive thought can change the outlook of the rest of the day.

Take it one thought at a time, there will still be negatives, they just won’t seem as bad. 

Spreading the Gratitude

Once you have gratitude within yourself, spread it to the world!

You never know who could benefit from it :)

 

“The root of joy is gratefulness” -David Steindl-Rast

Written by: Alexandra LaForge, Fundraising & Community Relations Intern

 

Is Detroit the Next Recovery Community?

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We believe it is.

Lately there has been a frenzy of fascination with and hope for the economic recovery of Detroit. This undeniable buzz is positive, infectious and has provoked people to think in new ways about reclaiming the prosperity of the Motor City. Yet, while the city is being physically recovered, there is an underlying need for personal recovery both physically and mentally.

Contributing to many influential and stable cities across the country is the mental health stability encouraged in recovery communities for its residents. The Fix identified the 10 Best Sober Living Cities in America. For individuals searching for new beginnings to move beyond their addiction and emotional strife, these cities boast unique recovery communities offering intensive treatment, sober living, cultural awareness and social outlets.

You can find unique recovery communities all over the country, and according to The Fix, Boston, LA, Houston, Delray Beach, Minneapolis, Portland, NYC, San Francisco, Nashville & Prescott, AZ are the front runners. For instance, Boston boasts a “commitment exchange” program, similar to an AA group, which focuses on building a sobriety network. Delray has a coffeehouse with its own therapy group, a radio show and even a recovery motorcycle club. Houston dedicates “clubhouses” as venues for recovery. Minneapolis features public sober high schools. Nashville has many community events including homemade ice cream contests, spring flings and cookouts. San Fran is quite diverse & open-minded in its communities, including LGBT support groups, and Spanish-speaking groups. These communities offer ways for people to be connected not only physically to others, but also virtually through social media sites. There is a great deal of energy found in youth undergoing recovery and communities provide alternate ways to have a good time. People find comfort within a wider range of recovery around people facing similar struggles as well as successes. Many are inspired to provide service to give back to those in need during thousands of weekly support meetings and AA groups. In addition, communities promote sober living experiences, raise community awareness of recovery and stimulate the economy, offering jobs to locals.

It may be beneficial for Detroit to learn a lesson or two from these iconic and lucrative cities. A relationship clearly exists between a healthy population and a resultant prosperous city. How can people take pride in Detroit if they do not take pride in themselves? The Inner Door Foundation has identified a definite need in the Metro-Detroit area for a Recovery Community. While the city is being physically rebuilt, we hope to grow a recovery community for people facing eating disorders, substance abuse and a variety of mental health concerns. Here at the Inner Door Center®, we plan to simulate the efforts of the programs around the country within Detroit and the surrounding communities. Our wish is to spread positivity and provide hope for those suffering, past sufferers, and those in recovery.

What We are Doing

The mission of the Inner Door Foundation is to raise public awareness of eating disorders and to promote the education of holistic treatment.  Stereotype Event-Detroit “The Yoga Experience” will be hosted at the Inner Door Center® in downtown Royal Oak in the spring. This year we will be featuring an interactive yoga experience inside our newly renovated center as we attempt to break the stigma of Eating Disorders with local food, entertainment and gift basket raffles. The rebuilding of Detroit and the renovation of the Inner Door Center® mirror the physical and mental stabilization of those in recovery.

The Inner Door Center® provides eating disorder treatment, substance abuse treatment and outpatient therapy for a variety of other mental health concerns, along with the renowned Mindfulness Yoga-Based treatment system.

We offer support groups, including Reconnect with Recovery and Reconnect with Food®. Reconnect with Recovery is a free community support program open to the public every 3rd Saturday of the month and includes group support & yoga-based healing.

It is time for Michigan to follow suit and stop sweeping these issues under the rug.

 

Are you interested in recovery, support groups, social media outlets or volunteering with Inner Door Center®?

Checkout http://innerdoorcenter.com for more information!

http://bit.ly/1sHvBYfThe 10 Best Sober Living Cities

Written By: Kendra Sweet, Marketing Intern

Introducing Sally

sally_schulman_sm Sally is our occupational therapist here at the Inner Door Center®! Taylor Dancer had the pleasure of sitting down with her and talking about what she does for the center. We know that many people do not understand what an occupational therapist does, so here is a description of her career.  Occupational therapy is a relatively new type of treatment for all sorts of mental disorders. An occupational therapist combines all five of the senses in order to work with people to learn new skills and also to learn techniques that her patients can use when they are in stressful situations.

She does one-on-one sessions with each person in the Inner Door Center’s® day treatment program, so that they receive individualized therapy. In a regular session she determines which scent of essential oil works the best with the patient’s body, for aroma therapy. She also decides which texture of fabric will work to calm the patient in a high anxiety time. Sally’s favorite and most successful technique is to have the patient lay on the floor or couch with a 20 pound weighted blanket over them. The pressure of the blanket compresses the nervous system and centers the patient. Using these techniques with others, Sally gives each person their own skills for managing difficult situations.

When asked what her favorite part of working here at the Inner Door Center® she replied almost immediately, “the patients.” Sally is passionate about her job and loves being able to help people to achieve their full potential. Before she was an occupational therapist, she worked as a physical therapist. She switched careers because she was tired of working with the same ailments over and over again. Sally’s interest in how people think, the psychological aspect of therapy, has inspired her to become the occupational therapist she is today.

Outside of work, Sally has many hobbies. Sally works in schools with children that have special needs, when she is not here at the Inner Door Center®. She is also furthering her own education at Wayne State University. Spending time with her children is also very important to her. Lastly, she loves to run and play various types of sports. Call the Inner Door Center® today to schedule an appointment with Sally, a wonderful and revolutionary occupational therapist. Our number is (248)336-2868.

Introducing New Therapist Jeff White, LLPC

JeffJeff White has been a member of the Inner Door Center® staff for about a month and loves what he does here at the center. A young and eager learner, Jeff is ready to be of as much help as he can at the center. If you want to get to know a little about Jeff read the interview below conducted by Carl Conyers, an intern of Inner Door Center®.   Carl: So what’s your name? Jeff: Jeff White Carl: What do you do here at Inner Door Center®? Jeff: I’m a therapist here, I have a degree in counseling so I do individual therapy and couples therapy, out patient and then for program I run groups. Carl: What is your favorite part of working here? Jeff: I like getting to form connections with all the clients that I have, its not really something that there’s much of outside of a job like this, so I get to meet people, I get to know them really well and hopefully help them. Carl: Do you know anyone personally who has a mental disorder? Jeff: I have, yeah. A couple of friends that I grew up with, they’ve struggled with things off and on Carl: Did that have any influence on you wanting to come into this field or was there something else that made you want to become a therapist? Jeff: I think it probably did, it got my interest going in the first place, kind of wondering what they were going through, that kind of got me interested in learning more about that and once I started learning more about that I figured out this was a field I really wanted to work in. Carl: Was what made you want to become a therapist all of that coupled with the information you learned? Jeff: I think the main thing was that I knew I’ve always been very interested in people, just kind of what make them tick and what’s brought them to this point in their life. So that and this is a really good area to do that in. like I said you get to know people very well doing this and you learn all about them. So I guess the main thing that got me into this was just being interested in people and wanting to learn about them. Carl: That’s cool. What are some of the techniques that you use during your sessions? Jeff: I’m kind of like a combination of cognitive behavioral therapy and person centered therapy, so person centered therapy is a lot of reflection, kind of paraphrasing what people are saying so that they can hear it in a different way. That can help spur along change sometimes and for Cognitive behavioral therapy its a lot of thinking about how your thoughts influence your emotions so its looking at specific thoughts and challenging them so looking at cognitive errors that some people have so identifying those and changing those Carl: What do you like to do outside of work? Jeff: I’m a really big baseball fan so I watch a lot of baseball Carl: Are you a Tigers fan? Jeff: Yeah, Tigers, Red Wings, Lions but they’re frustrating. So I follow sports, I try to golf I’m not really good but I really like it. I spend time with my dog and my fiancé, I like to read, I’m really into movies and that’s about it. Carl: What advice would you give someone with a friend who has an eating disorder? Jeff: I’m probably a little biased based on what I do for a living but I really would suggest getting some professional help. For an eating disorder and for anything else that people are struggling with. Friends and family really mean well but sometimes it’s hard for them to help that person effectively. So I think getting professional help, it’s scary to do and it’s kind of nerve-wracking, but it’s important so that would be my suggestion. Carl: For a person with an eating disorder, do you have any advice outside of the obvious coming in to get help? Jeff: Id say being honest with themselves, you know a lot of people know what’s going on and know that it’s a big deal but sort of try and deny it, either to themselves or to other people and so I think just being honest with yourself and try to look at yourself objectively, things like that. Carl: The center here focuses on eating disorders, is that the field that you are most interested in or is there something that interests you more? Jeff: I started up just generally seeing, you know the outpatient side you get just whoever comes in so a lot of depression a lot of anxiety a lot of substance abuse and I enjoy working with all that but working here I’m getting more and more experience with eating disorders and the more I get the more I do enjoy it. So I could see myself continuing on working with people with eating disorders. Carl: What is your impression of the center overall? Do you like it here? Jeff: I do like it, it’s really comprehensive. It’s a lot of people on our side of things trying to help each person who comes here, so that’s a huge plus. We’re in constant communication with each other about what a certain person might be struggling with and I really like that about it, the team aspect of it. So its everybody here at inner door working towards the same goal and that’s something that I really like about it here. Carl: You know they kind of have a different take on everything here with the yoga and the other components to healing. How do you feel about that? Jeff: It was kind of new to me, all of that stuff. I had done yoga once or twice before and it was alright but this was an interesting opportunity to sort of be around it more and learn more about it. Not just doing it but the philosophy behind it and I think that was a really interesting experience, something I was skeptical about but something I’m starting to like a lot more too, so once you learn about it I think its really helpful in everyday life.

If you are interested in scheduling an appointment to see Jeff please call our front office at 248-336-2868.

Recovery: Take Two!

peaceDo you remember the feeling you had when you realized you were practicing recovery? The moment you decided to be in recovery and step away from your eating disorder? That decision may have changed your life instantaneously, or you may find yourself having to pick recovery over your eating disorder often, and then again and again. Recovery is ongoing. I was 3 weeks into treatment when I realized I was actually practicing recovery.  At that moment, I remember feeling hopeful, feeling peaceful, and finally feeling FREE. Now I realize, I must chose recovery EVERY DAY to experience and embrace freedom from my eating disorder.

The best insight I’ve gained in recovery is to stay in recovery. Staying does not mean being still and stagnant, rather staying in recovery means being active.  Be active in your recovery. Whether you’re 10 years deep into recovery or 10 steps back from where you want to be, you must remain active in the healing process! Even if it takes one, two or a hundred actions before you feel whole.

Recovery is not called just called “covery” because it is a “re-covering” process. “Re” meaning repeat. Steps must be repeated and skills may be re-learned over and over again before you can change your behaviors and transform your life.

Honoring your recovery begins with honesty. Be honest with yourself. Are you practicing recovery? Did you lose sight of recovery somewhere along the way? Do you need support right now?

There is no judgment in truth. Truth opens the doors to understanding, welcoming wisdom and compassion. Search your self to gain understanding on where you are today, if you’re in need of additional support for your recovery, welcome this experience and be compassionate with yourself. Most importantly, you must be true to be you.

Recovery will include challenging days, and often time relapses. But the hope is in knowing that healing is possible, and it is available. No one is too messed up to recovery. You are designed to be exactly who you need to be. There is no mistake in you. The biggest mistake you may make is not honoring your truth, and instead choosing to disregard your needs. To stay active in recovery means to do whatever it takes to continue walking in the healing journey. It is essential to continually check-in and acknowledge where you are at in your recovery.

If you’ve began to fall back into obsession with food, body image or weight, or if you are struggling with low self-esteem, eating disorder behaviors and destructive thoughts, please seek support.  Stand up for your life, before your eating disorder stands in the way of it. If you’ve fallen a few steps behind recovery, speak up, seek help and step back on the path to freedom.

Inner Door Center® is here to help you rediscover your freedom in recovery. We would love to see you at our clinic this summer for ongoing support. Please call us at 248-336-2868 to schedule an appointment or learn more about Reconnect with Food® programs at www.innerdoorcenter.com.