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Where do I start?

Where do I start?

There is one thing we see here at Shades of Hope that seems to be a common theme: helplessness. Sometimes people realize they have an eating addiction, and other times they haven’t even gotten that far. Even receiving that diagnosis can leave even the strongest of people feeling deflated and powerless. The first question inevitably is “Where do I start?”

Whether we’re talking about binging, purging or any other type of addiction, the first step is to come to terms with is the fact that you do have a problem. Until that time, the source of your unease will evade you, hide in the darkest corners while still retaining control of your life. Once you shine a light on this, the next step, and this is a doozy, is to ask for help.

There are a number of things you can do for yourself that will help prepare you for the journey back to recovery. Take an inventory of your life, what are the triggers of your addiction? Are there people in your orbit that encourage, even empower, your negative routines? Take some time to isolate these triggers, because with them still active in your life, a full recovery will be next to impossible.

According to, there are eight basic questions that you can ask yourself that will help you to start understanding your food addiction and get a better understanding of it:

  1. What are your secrets about food? Be as specific as possible.
  2. What are other secrets? Again, be specific.
  3. What is it that convinces you that you are powerless over food? (Some find it helpful to also write about what convinces them that they are not food addicted.)
  4. What convinces you that your life is unmanageable? (Also, possibly, what convinces you that that it is not unmanageable.)
  5. Make a list of all the foods you have binged on, and any other out of control eating behaviors. Be specific.
  6. Make a list of all the diets you have tried, and everything else you did to try to control your weight or eating.
  7. Make a list of 15 specific times when you were powerless over food.
  8. Make a list of at least 30 negative consequences of being powerless over food – some physical, some mental-emotional, and some spiritual.

These are just small steps on a long journey, but we believe they are essential to helping you understand your powerlessness over food addiction and to getting you moving forward on the path to recovery.

Here at Shades we make it our business to get people started back to a full, healthy life. We give you the tools you need to move forward, but it will be up to you to do the work. If you feel like you are ready to take control of your life again, please do not hesitate to give us a call. We are here and eager to speak with you. God bless…