Many women who suffer from disordered eating patterns also struggle with saying NO. I was one of them… and it has been a process of letting go of what I thought I NEEDED to do and really acting only from my heart and truth.

  • Was it wrong if I didn't visit family over holidays?
  • Aren't I SUPPOSE to I sit with an old friend who wants to be in her drama and is not looking for solution ?
  • Am I a "bad" person for turning down a call for someone who wanted me to come over when I was exhausted from a long day and needed to rest ?

Living life based on what you "should do" is always going to result in some kind of negative self sabotage …When you are living your life to please someone else- when you are not saying NO, when you are spending all of your time taking care of everyone else…the food WILL get LOUD ! At some point in time the body and mind begin to say NO in their own way… a food binge, depression, and active anxiety episodes start to become the norm.

Sometimes we don't even realize how many " should's " we have running our lives !

  • I " should" lose my winter weight.
  • I " should" be able to stick with this cleanse.
  • I "should" have closer relationships with family…

Living in the SHOULD"S was a big part of what kept me STUCK in disordered eating. Never feeling like I was "doing" enough, or "being" enough. I SHOULD spend less, I SHOULD work harder, I SHOULD have children by now, I SHOULD make healthier food choices….it was never ending. I had a set of beliefs…some old files in my mind around what I believed "worthy' looked like…what "accomplished" was.

It wasn't until I became conscious of how the SHOULD'S in my life were actually destroying my ability to THINK BETTER that everything began to change-

brene brown quote

… there was stubborn set of beliefs that I really needed to let go of…around relationship, around who I was in my work, with my family…thoughts that had been running the show since I was a small infant !

I had no idea just how much stress and anxiety they were causing in my life, until I made the DECISION to get conscious of them, and then RELEASE them.

I came to realize that my interpretations of who I was suppose to be in the world were causing me guilt and shame on a daily basis. I could never measure up to the strict set of expectations I had set for myself and therefore, as a compulsive eater I had 2 options…to turn to food for the comfort I was not GIVING MYSELF in my life, or drown in self pity, guilt and shame…

Neither were working for me!

When you are feeling stuck, caught in a food trance, embodied with self pity, trapped in guilt and shame, look at the SHOULD"S that got you there !

3 Steps to letting GO of the SHOULD!


  1. Write down your " should" statement ( your trigger thought). EX: I should exercise every day
  2. What is your reaction to this statement ? In other words, what feelings, thoughts, and behaviours does this statement ignite ? ( EX:"This makes me feel stressed, anxious, guilty, bad about myself, pressured, it makes me want to eat badly when I don't follow though." )
  3. How can you change this statement so that it is NOT a "should "statement, and so that you are treating yourself with the highest respect, and putting yourself FIRST.(Ex: I will plan to exercising three times this week because that is healthy and makes me feel good. If I choose differently to honour myself and my body in that moment then that is great also. My first priority will be checking in with how I am feeling and what I need.)



As you go through this process you are asking yourself…do you love yourself enough to PUT YOURSELF FIRST. If the tank is on empty YOU are at the bottom of the list. As the old saying goes, we must put the oxygen mask on ourselves FIRST.

I would love to hear your comments below! If this spoke to you , please share on Facebook or tweet it!

Wellnessfranki durbin