Get help today 888-319-2606 or sign up for 24/7 text support.
American Addiction Centers National Rehabs Directory

It’s Time: You Deserve to Raise Your Standards

Standards are the expectations you have for yourself and for your life. They can play a big part in whether or not you overcome your eating disorder. Since your life is a reflection of your standards and beliefs, standards affect every part of your life: happiness, relationships, finances, well-being. The list is endless.

When we struggle with eating disorders and body image issues, more often than not, it’s because we have lowered our standards to align with our pain and suffering.

Standards and Eating Disorders

It’s common for emotional deprivation and unmet needs to manifest in your relationship with food. So often times, when you overindulge in food, it’s because of deprivation in other areas of your life. So where are you underperforming and not living up to what you truly want? Where have you  settled for low standards in your life?

Perhaps you’re allowing yourself to stay in an abusive or unfulfilling relationship because you think you aren’t deserving of more. Maybe your dream is to be a fashion designer, but instead you work a monotonous and soul-sucking nine to five job because you don’t have the confidence – or standards – to go after what you truly want. To balance out the deprivation in that area of your life, you binge eat.

The sad and all too common truth is that we can feel like we are unworthy of the things we want most of all. As a result of this unworthiness, we set low standards and commit acts of self-sabotage or self-punishment – like bingeing or purging – that prevent us from achieving our goals and full potential. There can be a false sense of safety in clinging to the familiar, even if the familiar is lackluster and disappointing.

And why do we do this? Why is it easier to play small and unhappy than go big and for our dreams? It’s because many of us live our lives based on false beliefs – beliefs that we more than likely inherited or formed when we were children who didn’t know any better and lacked true life experience. Maybe your parents always struggled financially and told you that you would too, because that’s the way of the world, and you just rolled with it. Maybe somewhere along the line, you formed a belief that you were destined to be overweight and unhappy, so your eating disorder is a type of self-fulfilling prophecy.

Whatever your situation, whatever your low standards, it’s likely that they are all based on a false identity that is not serving you.

How to Raise Your Standards

In order to raise your standards and break free of the behaviors that are no longer serving you, you need to change your beliefs and choices. There are a variety of methods you can use to do this. Below are a few to get you started:

  • Shift your mental landscape: Instead of ruminating in a place of fear, doubt, and unworthiness, remember that you deserve happiness and abundance. They are your divine birthrights.
  • Fake it ‘till you make it: You must fully feel into your self-worth, on a visceral level. This can absolutely happen energetically before it physically manifests in your life. Allow yourself to visualize and play in this space.
  • Own your desires: Give yourself permission to want what you want. Whether it’s paying off all of your debt, or finding your soulmate, own it and know that you are deserving of it!
  • Make magic happen: Manifest from a place of love and focused intention. Raising your standards means raising your vibration so that you can attract miracles into your life.

When you begin to work at raising your standards, it’s natural to experience resistance. Doubt, fear, and negative stories may crop up as your mind’s way of playing it safe and comfortable, but this is a faulty defense mechanism. Instead of falling victim to this, allow yourself to sit in the stickiness of fear and doubt while actively acknowledging the lack of truth there.

Your dreams and desires exist for a reason. When you think of them, you are interacting with the truest part of who you really are. Now it’s time to take it one step further and act on your dreams and desires. Raising your standards is the first step to getting everything you want out of life…and it’s a step that you deserve to take.



Images Courtesy of iStock

Was this page helpful?
Thank you for your feedback.

American Addiction Centers (AAC) is committed to delivering original, truthful, accurate, unbiased, and medically current information. We strive to create content that is clear, concise, and easy to understand.

Read our full editorial policy

While we are unable to respond to your feedback directly, we'll use this information to improve our online help.