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FFF 084: Disordered Eating, Anxiety and Perfectionism - with Megan Bruneau

FFF 084: Disordered Eating, Anxiety and Perfectionism - with Megan Bruneau

This episode’s guest is Megan Bruneau – a psychotherapist and wellness coach based in New York. She is also a writer and blogger and her work has been featured in different publications like Forbes, The Huffington Post, Entrepreneur, Thought Catalog and Elephant Journal, just to name a few. She hosts the Failure Factor which features “failure stories” from successful people.

Today, we discuss eating disorders, anxiety, and other manifestations brought about by perfectionism. A very insightful episode as Megan has actually suffered from and battled with perfectionism as well, which she was able to overcome by practicing what she preaches, stepping out of her comfort zone, and discovering self-compassion. A very eloquent speaker, Megan provided us with an excellent episode that you’ll gain a load of value from.

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Topics Covered

  • Megan’s background, her journey and how perfectionism manifested in her life, and her discovery of self-compassion. (02:10)
  • The type of people she works with as a wellness coach – which includes those suffering from eating disorders, OCD, anxiety, depression – and what she sees as the recurring theme of these conditions. (02:10)
  • How feminism plays a part in her advocacy to correct the expectations set by media and society to women – and men, especially around disordered eating. (09:17)
  • Her views as to why fear tends to be a motivator for people, rather than the joy and the ramifications associated with this mindset. (11:16)
  • Why perfectionism prevents us from experiencing joy and the present moment (12:49)
  • How eating disorders are triggered by many causes including genetics, culture, media, psychological and physiological factors and Megan’s personal experience with eating disorders. (14:25; 15:28; 19:25)
  • Her observation that the term ‘wellness industry’ is a euphemism for diet industry, and how this $65 billion industry tells people that we`re all not good enough. (16:32; 18:26; 19:25)
  • Her thoughts on the correlation between the proliferation of social media with body image issues and eating disorders (20:02; 21:05)
  • How people, including popular ‘influencers’ use apps, filters, photoshop and airbrushing to create a perfect persona on social media. (21:44)
  • Social media`s effects on people, and how what might be seen as motivation for one can contribute feelings of shame and worthlessness to another. (24:09; 25:15; 26:06)
  • Her suggestion to pay attention to how social media makes one feel, and why doing a social media cleanse is probably a smart move (26:45; 27:40)
  • Managing anxiety not by avoidance but by acknowledging, awareness and compassion. (29:36)
  • Social media responsibility and knowing the story, challenges and the truth behind the ‘perfect lives’ captured on social media. (30:66; 35:30)
  • A personal anecdote on how her seemingly perfect life years ago hid so many struggles in different aspects (32:44; 34:42)
  • Healing through Yoga and Buddhism which taught her about to have more connection, joy, allowing forgiveness and imperfections, and liberation. (35:50)
  • Why she wouldn’t change a thing about how her early life and the transformative effects of learning self-compassion through mindfulness, self-kindness and recognizing that pain and suffering is universal. (36:30)
  • Megan’s key takeaway when dealing with perfectionism and its manifestations. (38:59)

Relevant Links

To connect with Megan, you can check the links below:

It was a really insightful conversation I had with Megan and the time we had seemed to be insufficient to cover everything. If you know anyone who’d find this episode useful, please do share it with them.

To listeners – if there’s anything that you want Megan or me to chat about in future episodes, post in comments section so we can get Megan to come back and address your feedback and comments.

Thanks for listening and the support – if you enjoyed this episode, I hope you can leave the podcast a rating and review on iTunes, and if you haven’t subscribed yet, this is the best time to do that too. This will help the show to get up in the rankings.