How To Stop Eating Disorders


Write down the food rules you follow, or try to follow, or think you should be following.

From the above list, choose one rule you are willing to explore in this worksecrets and then answer the following questions. Then, you can use your weekly Goals Sheet and journal to go through the rest of your list of rules.


Reason for the rule:

How did I come up with this rule?

What happens if I break the rule?

Is this rule based on facts or fears?

How does this rule inhibit relationships?

How does this rule enhance them?

Do other people have to follow this rule to be okay, and if not, why do I?

Does this rule allow for flexibility, such as being sick, or being more active?

Does this rule allow for special occasions or holidays?

Would I tell anyone else to follow this rule? Why or why not?

What do I gain by following this rule?

What am I giving up by following this rule?

What am I giving up by not following this rule?

What would it take for me to give up this rule?


To break your patterns, you will need to start challenging your food rules. In the space below, write two rules you are willing to begin working on.

Use your weekly Goals Sheet to start challenging your food rules. There you can list the rule you want to work on and how you are going to start to change it. You might need to read the rest of this Key and Key 6 on behavior change before you begin to make changes. Keep in mind that even if you take small steps, eventually you will get where you want to go. The more you can challenge your current food rules, the faster you will get there, but everyone is different, so go at a pace you can tolerate.


Letting go of eating disorder behaviors and finding balance with your food takes awareness, education, guidance, practice, and of course patience. You will also need some idea about what to do, what to expect, and some trust that you will be okay. It will be easier for you to challenge and change what you are currently doing if you have something new to replace it with. Well-meaning people in your life have probably suggested, just eat, stop worrying so much, or listen to your body. But you probably need more specific guidelines in order to change. This Key gives you a new eating philosophy with guidelines, rather than rules, which provide both guidance and freedom to make your own decisions about what, when, and how much to eat.

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