Lessons from HLS12

This past weekend, I attended the 4th Healthy Living Summit in Cambridge, MA. It was a weekend full of meetups, workshops and swagbags.

Source: Courtney from Sweet Tooth Sweet Life

1.  A smile and Hi goes a long way! Being in a setting like this can be intimidating. There are lot’s of “familiar” faces yet you are meeting many of these people for the first time in real life so this can be awkward.  Sometimes smiling, saying hi I am Laura, how are you doing? is a great icebreaker.  I have to admit I was grateful to see familiar faces but also I met some awesome fellow bloggers by just using that one liner. It made my experience more memorable.

2. Knowing your worth! This was a hot topic of conversation.  How much should I charge for sponsored posts? How much should I make as a blogger? Can I ask money for x, y, z? In all honesty, YES YOU CAN.  I will be be writing another blog post on this topic in the next few days as it really is a hot topic for young women.   In the meantime, please read this book: Knowing Your Value: Women, Money, and Getting What You’re Worth by Mika Brzezinski.

I will also encourage you watching the following Ted Talk by Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO

3.  Being a big girl in HLS 12 can feel intimidating too and triggering my personal history. The weight range among the women was startling. It was something that I typically see in my 12 step rooms for Anorexia and Bulimia.  Did my head get in the mud and started to compare and despair heck yes. Did I ended up having a rebellion and indulge in sugar more than I needed. Yes.  Did I hide from pictures?  Yes because I was uncomfortable towering or being wider than most girls in the group.

There are a few things that I was reminded, my eating disorder recovery is a work in progress.  I am light years away from where I used to be like in the past. First of all I wouldn’t have gone to a conference like this before recovery.  Second of all, it didn’t stopped me from making new friends who saw the authentic me not how many pounds I have lost or how many readers I may have garner.

For today, I choose not to go on a fast or cleanse. Or to go against my  personal values and start posting every food picture that I ate. Baby steps here, perhaps I need to go back to basics by emailing my food sponsor what I ate as my sanity measure.  There are things that I do for sanity and one of the things that I had learned the hard way is not to compare and despair.

My story may or may not be unique. I know what its like to live in the hell of an eating disorder. I know what gifts recovery can bring into my life. That for today,  I am in a muddy/yucky place in my recovery. I am stuck in between old patterns and new solutions.   Learning to accept that some parts of my recovery came very quickly while others are going at a snail pace such as my physical recovery.   This is obviously a long term conversation for another date.

Thank you for listening me ramble about HLS 12.

Finally,  I want to thank HLS 12 planning committee Meghann from Meals and Miles, Heather from Then Heather Said/Healthy Living Blog, and Julie from Savvy Eats/Healthy Living Blogs for a great job putting this event together.

I am curious to hear online or offline, does any of these experience resonate with something similar in your life? Have you found yourself getting triggered by other people?  What coping mechanisms do you use to get through?