Michelle Sparkes is a physiotherapist, professional counsellor and wellness coach with lived experience of anorexia, EDNOS and binge eating in her teen and early adult years. In this podcast she delivers powerful insights, keys and strategies to help individuals recover from these health and life consuming problems.
Recovery conversation with Kate, age 42
In this podcast I speak to Kate, a 42 year old mother of two who for decades struggled with disordered eating and who, in a very short space of time, experienced a sense of freedom that she says is “hard to put into words unless you experience it. It’s just a sigh of relief that overwhelms you.” Kate did the 4×4 Freedom Express and some individual work with me. Objectively her scores on number of key instruments shifted significantly: Her EDED-Q global score reduced from 2.95 to 1.38 with a marked reduction in restraint concern from 6.0 to 1.0. Her stress on the DASS 21 reduced from 8 to 1; her self esteem improved on the Rosenberg Self Esteem Score from 16 to 22; her distress on the Eating Attitudes Test reduced from 25 to 4. This is her story. For more information visit michellesparkes.com
Spiritual Power – what to do when you feel driven by fear
The fear that drives us down the scales and into the self-destructive behaviours characteristic of anorexia and other eating disorders can grow into a terror that is difficult to articulate. I believe there is a spiritual dimension to this fear, that it grows from the seeds of lies believed in the crucible of life experience that lead us to view ourselves as deficient and defective, not good enough and needing to “be different” or to “do more” in order to shore up the acceptance, love, security or support we crave. In this podcast I explore the spiritual dimension of this fear and comment on what I have found helpful in my own experience of overcoming this fear.
My hope is that this may be helpful to the person battling fear right now in the midst of their eating disorder or to that one who has journeyed beyond disordered eating behaviours but finds old fears re-emerging in present circumstances. “Perfect (unconditional) love drives out fear” and “he who fears has not yet been made perfect in love”…we are all on this journey.
I believe at the heart of an eating disorder lies a deep-seated hunger for acceptance and security. How we see our “self” and what we believe about our worth, value and entitlement (to life, nurture and good things) are critical issues in both the development of, and recovery from, an eating disorder. In this podcast I share some thoughts about this spiritual dimension. I welcome your feedback and questions. firstname.lastname@example.org
Comfort, peace & hope
Have you ever felt deeply distressed, inconsolable or highly anxious? Right now in my country we’re grappling with the devastating impact of catastrophic bushfires. Closer to home my dearly loved mum is suffering and in decline. It got me thinking about comfort; it got me thinking about you. When we experience distressing emotions (as we do when we struggle with an eating disorder), we need comfort. Comfort that soothes and settles, that brings peace to our soul and fosters hope for the future.
I got caught in an ocean current on the weekend and it got me thinking how quickly we can go from being in control (“I’m okay”) to being out of control (“I’m in danger”). The slide from disordered or unhealthy (even sub-optimal) eating patterns and behaviours into a full blown eating disorder can happen quickly. What are the warning signs and do you know how close you are to the ‘edge’? Here’s some thoughts for you. Love to hear from you if you have feedback, questions or concerns. email@example.com
What to do when you’re paralysed by fear
Paralysing fear. Feeling stuck and terrified. Afraid to make a “wrong” decision; afraid to make any decision. Acute anxiety is a major feature of anorexia and something most of us will relate to in some measure. Even when you’re recovered from anorexia (as I am), there are times when situations trigger that old emotional response. So what can we do when we experience paralysing fear? Here are a few thoughts. I welcome your feedback, questions or comments. Contact me here www.michellesparkes.com/support
Customer ReviewsSee All
Thank you to this podcast for illustrating that people with eating disorders are still human and deserve to be treated kindly still, thank you
Michelle gives us a personal and powerful insight into a debilitating disease that touches many people in some way. In the most caring and respectful way, she gives a voice to those suffering in what can be a very lonely nightmare and strategies to those who support. I have read Michelle's book and I was so impressed at the way she expressed her vulnerability, authenticity and courageousness. I look forward to listening to and sharing all her honest, informative and supportive podcasts.