Interning schedule for the week:
Mon - Hospice at Mayo Campus (chart notes for patients)
Tues - University of North Florida (meeting and student patients in counseling center)
Wed - Working day to work on my community nutrition project with Unison facility employees
Thurs - Preferred Nutrition (private practice which specializes in eating disorder/binging/weight loss/bulimia/anorexia)
Fri - OFF!!!
What a week. My brain is really overflowing with information and I am struggling to find my place in this world as a future Registered Dietitian. I am in a hard place right now because I find myself constantly wondering "what is my philosophy?". What is it that I want to specialize in? I feel like it changes every day but I am staying true to living a healthy and balanced life.
My preceptor and her employees are amazing. I learn so much from her every day. I guess at times I feel overwhelmed by the amazing words that are spoken when working with eating disorder clients but at the same time it is absolutely amazing to know that a person has the opportunity to change and be healthy. We live in a crazy world and eating disorders are more common than we perceive them to be. So then I think about all of the many people out there striving for a more active life and for whatever reason, choose triathlons or running to improve health or meet weight goals. So then I find myself returning to my comfort zone and I find myself thinking about the science and physiology of the body and how we can improve performance, prevent injury and increase speed and power. I guess when it comes down to it, if we don't develop a healthy relationship with food, athlete or eating disorder patient/client, it is hard to make the most out of life.
I am currently browsing through a book called Counseling Tips for Nutrition Therapists by Molly Kellogg, RD, LCSW. I will be working with my first patient, as a dietetic intern, next week and I am nervously excited. With my background in exercise physiology and sports nutrition, I am finding myself wanting to have a plan for my first counseling session (another RD will be in the room to "sign off" the paperwork since I am not licensed or registered with her company) but we all know, life has a way to make us deviate from plans.
A chapter that really stuck out to me in this book is titled
"Tip #10: REFRAMING"
The chapter is focused on clients who get stuck in ways of perceiving themselves and their world that won't allow change. A reframe can help shift a client out of a stuck place. Reframing a problem involves placing it in a different context (or frame) and thereby changing its meaning. Often, this means taking something seen as bad (problem) and shifting either its content or its context so it can be seen as useful rather than bad. The new perspective leads either to acceptance or to creativity about what to do differently.
For even myself, I think we all do this on a daily/weekly basis, especially when things don't go as planned or we expect too much from our self or from others.
Here's an example from the book:
Many clients refer to weight loss as the only outcome they want. "I need quick results" or "I'm not getting the results I want". Framing all life problems as being about weight keeps a person stuck. To get away from a rigid frame, it's important to explore what the weight loss will give a person. It may be "confidence" "feeling better about myself" or "a sense of control".
Expanding the "outcomes frame" to include larger goals can lead to addressing these goals in other ways while continuing to work on weight loss. Life is not a "black or white" world where a person fails in the reference of food or exercise habits. In a "progress not perfection" frame, you can practice new behaviors and find out which ones show promise to lessen anxiety and perhaps defeat. It takes a creative state of mind to generate reframes.
Without even realizing it, we (my blog readers) have all been on a wonderful journey of reframing. Rather than focus on athletic performance or weight loss/maintenance we are focused on health. There are no good or bad foods. I believe we should emphasize certain foods and de-emphasize certain foods but certainly ice cream, chips and french fries are not off-limit or forbidden. If you find yourself with forbidden foods, those foods only become more desirable, thus causing you to associate guilt when enjoying that occasion food. Perhaps, starting today, you can try reframing your thoughts to be more creative on how you approach your weight and athletic journey.
Here are some great reframing examples from the book to get you thinking more positively....
"For the taxes I pay, because it means that I am employed"
"For my aching muscles, because I am strong and able to work hard"
"For the alarm clock ringing much too early, because it tells me I am alive for another day"
"For the gutters that need fixing and the windows that need cleaning, because I have a home"
I'd like to leave you with a wonderful quote from the book
"It takes courage to demand time for yourself. At first glance, it may seem to be the ultimate in selfishness, a real slap in the face to those who love and depend on you. It's not. It means you care enough to want to see the best in yourself and give only the best to others"