Blasting the Diet Industry with a Massive Dose of Self-Love
9 years ago I started a series of seminars called ‘Life After Competing’, where I spoke to competitors about all of the post show struggles one can be faced with. From binge eating, to body image issues to depression. Many issues that tend to get swept under the rug after a competitor walks off the stage. Over the years my seminar has evolved, it now focuses not just on the fitness competitor but your average individual that is just trying to ‘Find Balance’ with living their healthiest lifestyle possible and struggles with these same issues.
Around that time I had originally launched I met Rosalyn Fung, a Registered Psychologist who I had speak at one of my seminars. Throughout the years we remained in contact, had a few kids along the way and both have had immense growth in our own perspective industries. Rosalyn lives in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada and has had a general private practice for the past 9 years, where she sees teens, individuals, couples and families for a variety of issues such as anxiety, depression, work/life balance, grief, relationships, and trauma.
This year Rosalyn and I have decided to join forces and through our professions and own experiences we will be taking on a personal project together to change the face of the dieting industry by blasting it with a Massive Dose of Self Love
Be sure to follow us for updates and info on what we will be doing, but for now, I will leave you with my interview with Rosalyn so you can get to know her a bit better and find out what we are out to achieve!
(note: Read about Rosalyn’s story published by the Huffington Post, click here)
“My life use to be CRAZY, FOOD OBSESSED – rigid, bland, boring, anxious, calorie counting and trapped. Binge eating on all the foods I did not allow myself to eat (or should I say my diets would not allow- yes, there were multiple diets!) brought me to life in some ways, because it was my way to rebel against this awful relationship with food. Of course with this kind of relationship with food, came all the feelings of guilt, shame, embarrassment and just plain old not feeling good enough.
Like many women who struggle with body image, I tried to perfect my body by chronically dieting, binging and over-exercising. I grew up very athletic in competitive sports, and it wasn’t until around the age of 18, when I entered University and joined the gym there that I started to really compare myself to other women’s bodies, and having more conversations about body image with girlfriends and being influence by celebrities. This of course led me to want to transform my own body – not that I was overweight, but I wanted more definition and leanness. So I went on my first diet and transformed my physique. Of course this came with a lot of praise and attention, but it also had a dark side- I started to secretly binge eat.
I continued to shove my roller coaster feelings down with more food and made up for it by being even more restrictive and overexercising. This was the cycle for years, and I didn’t care because having a hot body was all I cared about. Then in 2008, I entered a body building competition in which I achieved my then dream body, and realized that having my perfect body didn’t actually bring me the happiness I was seeking. In fact, I was at my peak height of anxiety with food and my body image. So I knew I needed to go on a healing journey.”
Registered Psychologist specializing in Holistic Nutritional Psychology
mother of 2
Once hitting your peak height of anxiety and body image you went on a healing journey, what was this journey?
Fortunately, in my profession as a Psychologist at that time, I started my professional training certification in an approach called Hakomi, which is a mindfulness approach based on neuroscience.
What is Hakomi and how did you find it healed you and how do you apply it to your clients?
Hakomi translates to “How do I go into relationship with myself, and with others?” When you’re a therapist learning something, you cannot not work on your stuff. So I did…and I started to transform from the inside out, as I worked through my limiting core beliefs. I started to learn to love myself unconditionally and recognized my worth is not tied to my weight, shape or size.
How I explain Hakomi Method to my clients is that our bodies cannot tell the difference between thinking vs. being stressed. So at some point in our work, I may drop the content of their story, and invite them to notice without judgement, what sensations, emotions, tension, etc. their body’s experiencing in that moment. Essentially what we are doing is studying how the body participates in the problem (as it thinks it’s happening). From there, I can help them identify limiting core beliefs, limiting patterns and help them make shifts into a more expansive, authentic place so that even if the problem doesn’t change (because many times we don’t have full control), how my client approaches the problem shifts. These changes are made on a deeper, cellular level so that it involves the powerful mind-body connection.
With your specialty niche in holistic nutritional psychology, what is your main goal and how do you apply it to your clients?
I have combined all my training in Marital and Family Therapy, Hakomi, Eating psychology and Positive Psychology to create this niche in Holistic Nutritional Psychology. My main goal is to help clients discover freedom with food, fearless body confidence and being their own best friend – to feel like a whole person again, and help them live a happier, meaningful and more purposeful life!
What types of people do you work with?
Females and males from Adolescents to seniors, couples and families. Most of my clients are individual women, in the 20-50 years age range. I deal with various issues since I have a general practice, however because of my niche, about 60% of my clients are food and body image related.
I run live in person 8 week groups and I also have a 6 week online Food & Body Image Transformation Program.
My programs are designed to help a woman transform from the inside out, specifically in their mindset so that they can learn how to approach food with love rather than fear, learn to start respecting and liking their body image, and stop beating themselves up so and learn to talk to themselves more positively instead! Many of my clients are sick and tired of being chronic dieters and/or yo –yo dieters.
What was your reason for hiring Nadine?
A trend I’ve been noticing with my clients and in social media regarding body positivity is that when people are in process of learning to love themselves, they tend to go through a “rebellion” stage from the “dieting mentality”. I call this the Pendulum Effect, where dieting mentality is based one fear of fat and self-loathing. Then as people are breaking away from dieting mentality, they swing to the other side of the pendulum, which I coined “Rebellion Mentality” in which they tend to indulge in foods that they were not allowed while in Dieting Mentality, however they are in process of self-love so it’s coming from a place of learning to love yourself and breaking food rules. This is a very necessary, healthy and normal part of learning to love yourself – to break all these food rules that ran their life for years.
I am inspired by people and I love inspiring people. So although I do not believe I need to transform my body as I love it unconditionally, I believe I have the RIGHT to transform my body. As a project to demonstrate and inspire others, I want show people how to transform their body (whether that’s fat loss, muscle gain, body composition change) with relationship with food in the background and self-love in the foreground. In dieting mentality, it’s all about being obsessed with food and fear of gaining weight. The missing ingredient is Self-Love.
I believe Nadine is a great fitness coach to work with because she shares similar values and approach as me, as well she is such an inspirational woman in all her accomplishments.
How do you find that you two will be able to work together?
I will be counting on Nadine’s expertise in the nutritional, hormonal, physical and physiological areas, while I will use my expertise in positive psychology, nutritional psychology and neuroscience to help me transform my body with a massive dose of Self-Love
What do you expect to accomplish together on this?
To change the face of Dieting Industry by blasting it with Massive Dose of Self-Love!!! Ultimately, we want to inspire and show others how to love themselves while transforming their bodies – true transformation is an inside out journey.
Where do you reside and do you only work with people in that area?
I live in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada and I have a general private practice as a Registered Psychologist for the past 9 year, where I see teens, individuals, couples and families for a variety of issues such as anxiety, depression, work/life balance, grief, relationships, and trauma.
What do you do on your free time?
I love to hang out with my husband, Dan, and our two boys, Everest, age 4 and Logan, almost 2. I love food, so going to new restaurants is something I love to do with my hubby and/or friends. As a family, Dan and I love to travel and go hiking with our boys and locally we love nature walks. I love time with girlfriends in which we cook, paint, and go out dancing.
Of course I love to be active, so working out is important. I have been practicing krav maga (isreal martial arts) for the past year now.
How do you balance your career, family and fitness?
Ask for help and communicate openly about challenges so you can problem solve! I have an amazing husband, amazing parents, brother and friends who are always there to support me.
Organization and time boundaries are crucial as part of success.
I have an old school calendar I can see to help me see all my upcoming business, social and personal activities.
What would you tell other career moms if they are struggling to find time in their day for them?
Create opportunities to slow down in the moment. So that might look like while you’re driving from place A to B or at some point in your day, take the opportunity to mindfully take some deep belly breaths to relax your mind and body. It doesn’t any take longer to be mindful than it does to be mindless. You’re just shifting your focus and attention inward rather than on autopilot.
I like to encourage people to put their own needs first through self-care, because when you’re rejuvenated, you are able to give more to your loved ones.
Do you still struggle to this day with body image?
Not at all. However, does that “inner critic voice” sometimes come up? Of course, I’m human. I have days where my inner critic may have a thought that I could be tighter, more lean, etc. But “she” no longer drives the bus and has no power over me, – she’s someone I have learned to have deep self-compassion for. This is a huge part of my work with clients- learning how to have self-compassion and understanding what part of them is really driving the bus when it comes to food and body image, and how to make a permanent mind shift.
What would you tell someone that is struggling with body image and food?
Learning to find peace with food and your body image starts with creating a foundation of respecting your body. It starts with interrupting the negative self-talk and replacing with self-compassion. Transformation is an inside-out journey. Anyone can transform their body, but it usually doesn’t bring you the happiness you seek nor does the body transformation last. Truly transforming your mind with your body creates a permanent and positive change.
What are your goals for 2016?
My word for this year is “Abundance” in every aspect – happiness, health, prosperity and positive influence on others. I am focused on building my business online so that I can make a deeper and bigger impact internationally. I recently completed my very first Online 6-week Food & Body Image Transformation Program, and had my first international member from Australia!
I have been facilitating 8-week in person food & body image groups for the past 4 years, and soon I’m planning to run a Mastermind version of these groups, in which my tribe can continue to deepen their relationship with their whole self.
And of course, this big project with Nadine is a significant goal too!
What are your social media handles and how can people find out more about you?
Website: Holistic Body Love
Facebook Page: Rosalyn Fung Holistic Body Love – Psychologist