“Try your hand at this workbook and you will learn to love yourself for who you are, not for what you eat.”
I strongly believe in working with guides, otherwise I wouldn’t have written one myself. So, when Lauren Lazar Stern, an art therapist and licensed professional counselor, asked me if I’d be interested in writing a review of her book called “The Slender Trap“, I immediately and excitedly agreed.
The purpose of this book is “… to help you decide whether you are suffering from symptoms associated with an eating disorder or body image disturbance, to help you begin to look at and understand more about yourself and the way you live and feel, and to help you resolve some of the issues that are getting in the way of healthy functioning.”
This purpose was more than met.
While going through the workbook, I was impressed with the detailed and step-by-step approach of the different stages you go through once you are ready to admit that something is not quite right with your body image and/or your eating habits.
Lauren takes you from the early stages of finding out about different eating disorders all the way to finding a therapist that fits your needs.
Laure goes into detail on how genetics play a huge role in the way your body looks. She talks about exercise addiction, the diet trap, how relationships affect eating disorders, embracing the new you and so much more.
This book helps you to work through your issues in many ways, which keeps it interesting and super informative. There are detailed explanations, lots of pictures and ways for you to write, draw and express yourself and your feelings.
While going through the book you are always checking in with yourself, going deeper and deeper to figure out what you are trying to hide with your disordered eating.
After every chapter, you are encouraged to see how you feel. Hot or cold? Light or heavy? Getting lots of feedback from Lauren herself helps you to process the new information and understand why you’re experiencing your feelings the way you do.
This book requires a lot of thought and action on your part and may seem a bit overwhleming at first. However, you don’t have to work through it in one setting.
You can pick the chapters that most interest you or that you feel speak to you and your current situation and ponder on them for a while. Take your time with the answers and be really honest.
Treating yourself to this book, giving yourself the right to take some time out of your busy schedule in order to work on your problems is a great first step towards health. However, this book does not replace having therapy, it rather complements weekly sessions.
While this book is focused on girls and women, I think that men can equally benefit from the information and the exercises.
Overall, it’s a great workbook and I can absolutely recommend it! I learned a lot about myself while doing the exercises and I can see myself going back to the myriad of facts and information many times in the future.