Success in Feeding Therapy Beyond Food Expansion – A Journey with Me, Kelly
For individuals struggling with feeding challenges, such as Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID), the idea of seeking help to overcome their challenges with food can be both daunting and hopeful. That’s exactly why I started Infinity Hypnosis. I know that food success is about more than just expanding your food repertoire and my goal is to empower you and help you make the changes you’re seeking. I also believe that therapy looks different for everyone; I don’t use the same approach for every client because there is no one approach that works for every person.
One challenge to getting started with therapy is the number of unknowns. We all like to know what to expect, so I’ve decided to outline just that – here is how your journey can start out with me:
The First Session
Our first session together is all about you (get ready to talk openly and honestly with your therapist!). This first session, whether it’s with me or someone else, is about building trust and our therapeutic relationship. It’s important to trust your therapist while they take you through the next steps of your journey. We will discuss your medical health history, food dairy intake, whether or not you’re ready for change, what that change may look like for you, and how to tell if you’re really “ready” for therapy (sometimes we’re not quite ready for change yet! We can work together to help you become more “ready”). I will also just want to generally get to know you! This helps me understand you and your personality, so I can adjust our sessions to best suit your needs.
Identifying Hurdles and Setting Goals
Aside from this background information, we’ll also discuss foods that interest you, or maybe more likely, if NO foods interest you (and how we can generate some of that interest!). We will discuss some of your biggest hurdles – whether it’s fear of going out to eat, going off to college, holidays, handling pressures from family members, or navigating health concerns – and what you would like to tackle most in therapy. These discussions allow me to help tailor your personalized treatment plan to align with your goals.
As I mentioned, I truly believe that therapy is not a “one size fits all”. We’ll discuss options for therapy, such as food chaining, exposure therapy, diving right in, journaling, medical routes (e.g., testing or medications, such as appetite stimulants), and any other options that may be helpful for you!
Food Success Beyond Expansion
I firmly believe that food success goes beyond eating more food or expanding your food repertoire. It’s also about embracing “small” wins that ultimately lead to transformative changes in your relationship with food. Here are some examples of what these “small” wins might look like:
- Seeking Help and Support: Acknowledging the need for change and reaching out to family members or professionals for support is a significant step towards progress.
- Ordering Off the Menu: Trying out new restaurants and ordering off the menu, even with modifications, is an accomplishment worth celebrating.
- Eating at School: For children struggling with ARFID, the simple act of eating lunch at school, even if packed from home, can mark a major milestone.
- Finding Fulfillment in Snacks: Understanding that three small snacks can be as satisfying as a traditional meal fosters a healthier relationship with food.
- Appreciating Your Preferences: Recognizing that having a preference for certain foods does not diminish one’s worth or normalcy.
- Tasting New Foods without Anxiety: Gaining the confidence to taste new foods without stress or anxiety is a testament to personal growth.
- Embracing Individual Tastes: Enjoying food in a way that suits individual preferences, even if it defies conventional norms, is a celebration of self-expression.
- Valuing Nutritious Choices: Appreciating the value of foods that promote health and strength, regardless of their variety, is a crucial aspect of the journey.
- Willingness to Explore: Embracing the mindset of exploring different ways to prepare foods rather than outright rejection opens up new culinary experiences.
I’m here to celebrate these wins with you, and ultimately help you meet your feeding goals, whatever those may be. If you’re ready for change, reach out to us at Infinity Hypnosis.