This is the last part of my interview with eating disorder expert Ellen Frankel. Frankel is the co-author of The Diet Survivor’s Handbook: 60 Lessons in Eating, Acceptance and Self-Care and Beyond a Shadow of a Diet: The Therapist’s Guide to Treating Compulsive Eating.

Recently, she published the novel Syd Arthur about one woman’s search for true contentment after years of living by diet rules, calorie counts and scale results.

Below, we talked more about her novel, how readers have reacted and what she’d like people to take away from her book.

What really struck me in this interview was Frankel’s emphasis on how we spend our days (in the second question). Years ago, I spent my days being miserable, bashing my body, feeling guilty about eating, consuming tasteless foods (and still feeling bad) and feeling stressed-out and tense — with a very shaky self-worth.

While I know these thoughts and behaviors aren’t entirely under our control (there’s that complicated combo of genetics, parenting, environment, certain stressors, etc.), we can choose to do something about them. We can toss our scales, stop buying diet foods and cookbooks, engage in physical activities we truly enjoy, learn about healthy ways to alleviate anxiety, and focus our attention on bigger and better things (like our passions, loved ones and the beauty of nature).

If you haven’t read them yet, here’s part one and part two of our interview. I’m incredibly grateful to Frankel for taking the time to share her book and insight with readers!

You can learn more about Ellen Frankel and her work at her website.

4 Comments to
Self-Worth, Spirituality & How We Spend Our Days: Part 3 With Ellen Frankel

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  1. Whoah, I can’t believe she referenced that quote by Annie Dillard–that was my yearbook quote! Coincidentally, my senior year of high school was when I was well into my eating disorder. In fact, I remember choosing that quote to go under my yearbook photo and thinking about it in terms of wanting to escape my eating disorder. I knew I didn’t want to spend the rest of my life as I had been spending all those days–counting calories, hating my body, feeling miserable.

  2. Hello!

    I have run into so many sites about self worth and I believe these are great outlets for others who are suffering silently to come and find encouragement that they are not alone. I too have/had suffered with major self worth issues and I wrote about it in my true life story. It would be such an honor if we could some how support one another with our stories so we can reach others who are looking for inspiration and answers.
    The book I wrote deals a ton with spirituality and how I have had to overcome a lot of things I was in denial about especially when it came to men, money, food addictions and just plain not feeling good enough.
    May I please send you a copy of this eBook for you to see if this is something you may want to help teach others with? There is a great story in there about when Patrick Swayze was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer I was also diagnosed with three masses in my pancreas. My life was blessed because I am still here today, but there was a big reason why I was so sick in the first place and I show people this and how it is the true reason we do get so physically sick in our lives.

    I wish you much happiness!

    God bless,

    Kelli Faulkner

  3. Women’s books and magazines are so masochistic. My personal pet peeve is men who tell women how to be better women. It’s nice to see a woman with her heard on straight giving good advice.

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