Short Term Planning for Not Bingeing

  • Continue to work on your own personal list of “Immediate Things to Do Instead of Bingeing”. Discover which activities are successful and repeat them and/or add new similar options.
  • Incorporate relaxation techniques into your daily routine, i.e. yoga, meditation, “quiet time” away from others, breathing exercises.
  • Write a letter to a family member- you do not need to send it! Have the courage to say who you are and what you need. Write a series of letters over time be honest, candid and assertive.
  • Contact a long lost childhood friend that you have thought about over the years but haven’t seen.
  • Plan ahead to attend a cultural event, like a concert, art exhibit, play, or museum. Study up on the subject before going. A personally enriching activity can over time take the place of bingeing.
  • Make lists about your life: likes and dis-likes, goals, priorities, accomplishments, things-to-do, people-to-call, etc. Lists are good for organizing thoughts instead of letting them “spin” or overwhelm you.
  • Practice saying “No”. Be assertive and express your needs, small or large. Set your own limits and boundaries. It may feel risky and difficult at first but it will get easier as you become stronger and more practiced at it. You always have a fundamental human right to make your own choices, decisions, and opinions.
  • Take a vacation. Get away from your usual routine. Decide not to binge and purge while away. Be a “new” you while you are gone, and think about ways to continue with that attitude when you get home.
  • Try visual imagery. Imagine or picture yourself doing something before you do it in a positive way. For example, before dinner mentally see yourself walking to the kitchen, preparing a healthy meal, eating it slowly in a pleasant setting and cleaning up afterward. Imagine it as completely enjoyable and then repeat it in reality.
  • Begin to smile at others even consider hugging. Remember most people are shy themselves. Something as small as a nod of the head or smile can connect you to others in a wonderful way.
  • Continue journaling, identifying feelings when you feel like bingeing and/or purging.
  • Consider, or continue, marking your calendar with a big star each day you don’t binge/purge or putting money in a jar. When you reach certain goals big or small reward yourself.
  • Stop yourself in the middle of a binge if possible. Breathe peace into your body even if you feel uncomfortably full. Do whatever you can to stop from eating more or purging. Afterward write about the process in your journal.
  • When you are first recovering from bulimia, it can be helpful to stop buying the foods that you are most likely to binge on, the food that seems the easiest or most compelling when you are in the midst of a binge/purge. Later you can begin to give yourself permission to eat what you crave but do it with a capable support person who understands your goal is to increase self-awareness, not to binge.