My Binge Eating Disorder Recovery Story

Despite the name, binge eating disorder is not about food. It sounds so simple but it’s one of the universal truths that liberated me after years of research and self-administered treatments. Often paired with depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety or tendencies for addictive behaviors (Source), binge eating disorder is really a symptom of something that sits deeper, a void that needs to be filled. It’s developed as a coping strategy. To eat food in obscene amount, to eat food that’s easily available and makes us feel good, to give in to the blissful but temporary feeling of fullness, is to self-administer love and acceptance without disturbing anyone, asking for anything.

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Can you decipher the messages of the body?

“And one cannot begin to comprehend how filled up a therapy room can be by emotions: every inch every corner in that which we sit occupying the sadness, the anger, the pressure, the pain. Every inch and every corner filled up, except for the vessel that carries it originally, within the body of the client there is only a void; emptiness.”

Throughout my experience working as a psychotherapist under supervision I have encountered remarkable ways in which emotions have been expressed through various physiological representations in the body.  Somatization refers to a tendency to experience and communicate somatic distress and symptoms unaccounted for by pathological findings, which are commonly attributed to physical illness. It has been a bewildering experience to observe that almost half of my clients over the course of therapy express bodily symptoms.

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The Struggle & Acceptance of Learning a New Language

One of the top ten questions I've been asked in new social settings while living abroad is, "do you speak the language?”  For us that language is German, and yes, in Austria they speak German.  There are different variations and dialects in learning German, and even Viennese German can carry several distinctions given to the form but German it is.  And German I am currently struggling with.

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Weekly Wrap-Up: An Evening with U!Shine Vienna

After months of living and working in limbo, we were ecstatic and equally relieved, to finally reach a place of completion with the U!Shine Vienna website. At that point, we felt appropriately prepared to begin hosting events for those in the community we are hoping to reach. Before we could start with workshops and seminars on mental and emotional health, however, we wanted to answer a question on the minds of many: What and who is U!Shine Vienna?

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Integrating into a New Culture and its Effects on Mental Health

Having moved abroad three times throughout my lifetime, I have encountered various situations that have challenged my mind and capacities in ways that I had never experienced before. When moving abroad, a change of environment can often feel foreign and discomforting. The act of moving abroad challenges our ability to cope with new situations and our flexibility to adapt to a new environment.

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Why We Should Treat PTSD Anxiety Differently Than General Anxiety Disorder

To address treatment, it is imperative that we know the difference between worrying, GAD, and anxiety as a side effect of PTSD. Worrying is something we all do, from taking a test to having to undergo surgery. Worry is part of life. The difference, according to Johns Hopkins Health Alert, is the amount of time spent worrying. Those with an anxiety disorder are more likely to spend 4+ hours of their day worrying, whereas regular worrying lasts about an hour. Those with an anxiety disorder are also more likely to have accompanying physical symptoms, such as panic attacks, racing heartbeat, and upset stomach.

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Tips for People Who Over-Empathize

In this episode of Holly Heart Talks, Holly talks about how sensitive people can over-empathsize to the point of it effecting them negatively in their day. She shares tips that she implements herself on how to become more aware of your threshold and how to practice identifying what makes you go negatively overboard.

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Growth: Excruciatingly Extraordinary

If you’ve been following our dream for U!Shine Vienna from the beginning, then you know 2018 was a huge year for us. It was a year all about building: Working to get U!Vie (our self-dubbed nickname) founded as a legal entity, gathering a team, opening a bank account, creating a website, finding our voice on social media, and networking among a number of other exciting moments.

It was also a year of extraordinary and excruciating growth. Extraordinary because, whoa, U!Shine Vienna exists and we’ve met so many phenomenal people in Vienna, immigrants and locals alike, due to its existence. Excruciating because, as growth does, we’ve been stretched in uncomfortable, disappointing, and at times, disheartening ways. I tell you this not to kill the mood, but rather, to be transparent in how we’ve experienced the realities of founding this organization.

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4 Tips to a Healthy Start in 2019

January is super heavy for me, as I need to recover from the busiest work month of the year: December. December for me is super exhausting, working nonstop with no time for anything.

Normally I have a pretty good work-life balance. Throughout the year I try to figure out the best way to take care of myself: my mind, my body, and all of the other important stuff like work, healthy relationships, etc.

But in January, I need to start all over again. I remind myself of all the little things that I do to keep myself happy and healthy and to get back on my positivity train. This is why I want to share my tips with you about how to feel a bit calmer with yourself and how to continue to work on yourself without feeling overwhelmed and anxious. This can be done without fear of failing and without comparing yourself to others.

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The Process of U!Shine Vienna

In late Winter of 2017, Michelle contacted Holly out of interest to meet her for coffee. Both Holly and Michelle are American-expat bloggers in Vienna and have been followers of each other for a long time. They met in Cafe Little Britain - an oasis of a cafe with British charm, culture, and delicious English breakfasts. Interestingly enough, this cafe is Holly’s sanctuary - a special place in Vienna where she feels safe and at peace - and found out about this cafe through Michelle’s blog.

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