Nurture and Thrive
Online course: gentle disordered eating recovery
What is Nurture and Thrive Online Course
Nurture and Thrive is our signature 12 step evidenced based programme to support individuals end food and body obsession, recover from binge eating, emotional overeating, yoyo-dieting or restriction. Our approach is integrative and takes a somatic, nervous system lens to support the individuals we work with to realise that recovery is not about strength or willpower, but rather about science and safety. In Nurture and Thrive we delve into the science behind why we might keep turning to behaviours that cause them distress and how to overcome this gently and tenderly, using the body as ally, not an enemy.
Nurture and Thrive has been developed after working with 1000's of individuals in the eating disorder and body image space and realising that there is a gap in understanding why disordered behaviours can be so challenging to confront and change; by creating awareness around this, our members stop blaming and shaming themselves and learn to open themselves up to other ways of coping, feeling and living.
How does Nurture and Thrive work?
Nurture and Thrive is available via our online platform; consisting of 12 steps broken down into easy to absorb bite size chunks. Each step is accompanied with a video, audio and E-book so you can choose how you would like to engage best. As you go through each mini step you will be met with self inquiry prompts to support you to integrate and apply the information you have learnt into your daily life.
We include resources such as example meals plans, coping skills guides, worksheets and journal prompts to give you easy to access tools to use.
Step one: Attuning
Bringing greater awareness and understanding to our own nervous system on our recovery journey can support us to learn how to create feelings of safety, and confidently tolerate feelings of anxiety that arise as we face challenges. As we tune into our body and the sensations it creates we slowly build up attunement, emotional resilience and self esteem so we can experience the joy, excitement, playfulness, rest growth, healing and connection that we all deserve.
Step two: Nourishing
Having a greater understanding about the role of food, nutrients and eating has on the body will support offering self compassion and self tenderness when behaviours around food and eating feel out of control or scary.When we start to see food as both fuel, and more than fuel we can offer it greater respect and thus create more space to notice how we are using it or avoiding it to help us cope with discomfort and unease.
Step three: Exploring
We can look at the aspects of our lives that are enabling the disordered behaviours to continue, these are called maintaining mechanism. Once we understand this we can reflect on the past, not to dig around there too much but to understand and accept how early life experiences and our core beliefs are impact the way we see ourselves and how safe we feel the world around us is. This allows us to understand why we may have turned to eating behaviours and bring self compassion to ourselves.
Step four: Attending
Delving a little deeper into the basic understandings of the brain and it's connection to the nervous system and body can offer more insight into the science behind why we may turn to behaviours that may not be optimal for our physical or mental health as well as understanding how our body image works.
Step five: Embodying
Embodiment is the experience of being in the body. As a culture we tend to live just outside of body, however this leaves us disconnected. Now safety resources are being expanded, we can start to introduce practises to bring us more experiences of embodiment to introduce in our daily lives so we can truly understand what it feels like to live in and enjoy the body. Like any relationship the relationship we have with our body takes time and patience to develop, there will be ruptures but nurturing our bodies is a way to repair this rupture gently.
Step six: Reflecting
It is important we take regular pauses to review and reflect the knowledge and growth that we have experienced. This allows us to revisit anything that didn't make sense to us at the time and explore this in more detail with a more informed and experienced perspective.
As we revisit this knowledge we are likely to be able to understand it on a deeper level and things may "click" in to place.
Step seven: Learning
Media is designed to create a response within us; and therefore all types of media can have an impact on our nervous system and thus our feelings, thoughts and eating behaviours. By gaining greater understanding of how the media works, empowers us to be able to navigate it skillfully, avoid aspects that can be harmful and use distress tolerance skills when we cannot avoid something that might be triggering and potentially lead to engaging in disordered behaviours.
Step eight: Stretching
Once we are able to read our bodies and nervous systems, it is often that we realise we spend a lot of time in protective states of fight, flight and freeze. This is where disordered behaviours happen and occurs when the state of safety is missing There are daily practises that we can introduce to reshape the nervous system towards safety and connection and expand our window of tolerance.
Step nine: Releasing
Now safety resources have been developed and defined, although they will continue to expand and grow, we can start to explore play and peaceful solitude which are often neglected when we are in the midst of disordered eating.Not only are these things often inaccessible when in a state of survival; as naturally the brain and body won't be promoting play when you are chased by a tiger - but they are also foundational to accessing more safety and connection. The more safe we are, the more we play and spend time in solitude, and the more time we play and spend time in solitude, the more safe we feel. The more safety, play and peaceful solitude we let into our lives the more we won't rely on disordered behaviours
Step ten: Consolidating
The autonomic nervous system learns through habituation, this means experiences, both negative and positive had the power to change what it does and does not respond to. When we relate this to eating behaviours, we realise that at one point these behaviours were adaptive and functional and supported us to manage a time that may have felt consciously or unconsciously unmanageable. By attuning to the body and reshaping the nervous system we are able to prevent it from habitually turning to disordered behaviours during times of distress or discomfort and instead to tolerate the distress and/or choose to lean on safety resources. When this is practised again and again, over time autonomic patterns begin to change.
Step eleven: Connecting
We know, especially after the pandemic the impact that our personal and communal wellbeing is impacted by isolation. The social environment that we live within impacts our biology and has the power to switch on and off different genes. When people feel disconnected they seem to have an increased inflammation response. We know that individuals experiencing distressing eating behaviours often experience more feelings of loneliness and isolation which can be a maintaining mechanism for staying stuck within this behavioural and feelings loop. Finding ways to connect and experience common humanity can be a transformation aspect of recovery.
Step twelve: Concluding
After taking the time and effort to explore new areas of knowledge and new areas of ourselves it is important to make space to review and reflect on the experience, to note what has changed both in our environment and within our behaviours. This allows us to show ourselves gratitude for allowing ourselves the care we deserve to have and acknowledge the areas that we may need to offer more nurturance.
Who is Nurture and Thrive online course for?
Nurture and Thrive Online Course is for anyone who is experiencing eating behaviours and body image thoughts that are causing distress; this may include binge eating and emotional eating, having rigid rules around food and exercise, experiencing yo-yo dieting, finding food and body image stressful, experiencing restriction, preoccupied with food or finding eating or body image impacting life negatively. As this course is self paced you can take as long as need to to explore and re-explore it; we advise you do it no quicker than over 12 weeks to allow time to apply it to your daily life.
How much is the investment for Nurture and Thrive online course?
We have three payment options depending on your personal circumstances, please choose what feels right for you.
If you would like to add on 1:1 support please just get in touch.