Ask yourself, “Am I trying to be better, or look better?” Many are more concerned with the latter, and will even sacrifice their health for their appearance. Additionally, people believe the fallacy that improving their appearance will make them do better in jobs, relationships, and all other areas of life. However, focusing too heavily on physical appearance is likely to cause body dissatisfaction, which can lead to various mental and physical health issues, and therefore take its toll on your performance and happiness.
Another important thing to consider with resolutions is “is it really self-improvement, or is it perfectionism?” Perfectionism is particularly more common with millennial’s, raising their risk for anxiety, depression, eating disorders, and suicidal thoughts.
Ill effects of eating disorders can be both physical and psychological. Psychologically, eating disorders can cause social anxiety, depression, and even hallucinations and psychosis. Physically, they can cause organ failure, infertility, brain damage, abnormal hair growth, and even death. Hopefully you aren’t experiencing any of these, but you could still have an eating disorder without the symptoms present.
So how do you tell what is and isn’t disordered eating? If you are finding yourself increasingly obsessed with food intake, burning calories, eating only certain foods, purging, or other abnormal eating behaviors that interfere with other areas of your life, you likely have an eating disorder. While a degree of concern with these issues is healthy, over-concern that causes unhealthy eating habits, missing social events, or stress is never worth whatever benefits you are after.
What can you do? Psychotherapy and nutritional counseling are common treatments, and in more severe cases medical care and medications may even be needed. Ask your friends to hold you accountable. If a friend of yours has an eating disorder, be supportive of their condition. Be sensitive to their body-image issues. Be there for them to talk about their problems.
Remember, overall well-being should be the ultimate goal of a resolution. Find a nutritious diet that you can enjoy and adhere to for the rest of your life. If it dominates your life, it’s not worth it! And if you can’t adhere to it, it won’t work!.