Spiritual Anorexia

I’ve been in a weird funk.

This year has proven to be quite challenging in so. many. ways.  And I know I’m not the only person experiencing personal struggles.  It’s easy to fall into the trap of seeing them from a “why me?” perspective OR you have the choice to reflect inward, observe your thoughts about the situation and ask “how can I grow, evolve or change from this experience?”  

When I was younger it was always the former question, OMG why ME?!?  Why is this happening to ME? Why, why why. Did I bring this upon myself, what did I do to deserve THIS? Can you relate?  But that road seems to lead to an unresolved dead end of frustration which can lead to depression for some.

On the flip side, deciding to use the icky experience as an opportunity for change is going to bring about sustainable results.  It might seem like harder work, and in many cases it is, but the long-term efforts far outway the easy way out philosophy (which doesn’t bring lasting results and can, in my experience, lead to more misery).  

Recently I connected with some amazing people in Atlanta and tapped into an incredible community. It started in December last year when I went to my first Mindful Mornings (MM) event by Atlanta Founder Jennefer O’Brien. I walked away a bit dizzy from the experience because the essence of MM is “community over competition.” I met and connected with real people who were interested in doing better, supporting each other instead of competing with one another. After all, my philosophy is this: there is enough in our world to go around. If you haven’t been to MM, definitely check it out. Jennefer curates and highlights local do-gooders each month who are making a difference in the community and at large. Mindful Mornings meets once a month in various locations (read more inspo here). One of the speakers at a MM event was Kristen Oja of Stat Wellness. Keep an eye on her ‘cuz this consummate entrepreneur is shaking up health care in Atlanta and connecting women in wellness during monthly events to support each other’s biz aspirations.

Another amazing person I’ve had the pleasure of forging a high-vibe friendship with and you’ve seen on my social media posts is Mindfulness-based Psychotherapist Lena Franklin. We’re very much aligned in so many areas and I’m always on the hunt for additional practitioners to refer clients to (ps: highly, highly recommend). I mean, she had me at mindfulness! During our second lunch date at Flower Child I had a major epiphany that hit me like a lightning bolt. What I was grappling with was this sensation of what I can only call spiritual anorexia. I just felt like I was significantly deficient in spiritual connections. And when I said it outloud during lunch we both connected to the concept. No lie, I almost choked on my grilled tofu as we giggled like school children →  Spiritual Anorexia. [PS lemme know if you want a date to dine at Flower Child!]

As a dietitian I’m familiar with the eating disorder anorexia nervosa. But the condition I was suffering from was a lack of regular and frequent connections and discussions with people on a deeper, more meaningful level. I grew ill of the pithy conversations about the weather, trending TV shows, or politics (please no more Trump talk). I craved discussions of personal evolution and growth and how to serve a higher purpose on this planet. I craved talking about how to collaborate with others to make a positive impact on larger groups of people. I crave spiritual connection and change, collaborating to make the world a better place. I need the energy of other optimists. Similar to what Oprah often discusses on Super Soul Sundays. THAT type of talk. Deep discussion on how to be better and help others heal, shift and thrive. It’s nourishing on another level that food simply can’t touch.

And then I tapped into another incredible community with The Center for Love and Light on Zonolite near Emory. An amazing old colleague of mine, Corey Dobyns, reached out to me and told me about the facility she had her practice in. Looking back now, I wish I had taken her up on her invite much sooner because I was unaware of how desperate I was to tap into a truly non-judgmental spiritual community. I’ve taken workshops there from Jeff Glattstein (incredible if you vibe with truly spiritual practices and connecting to Mother Earth) and met amazing people who are on similar paths to a deeper, more meaningful life. Jeff is a gifted healer who I can’t do justice here with his vast array of spiritual talents. But I’m deeply grateful for the personal work we are engaged in.   

And THEN last Friday, after I finished my therapeutic session with Jeff, I realized that the owner of Center for Love and Light, Jamie Butler, was in her office. I was hoping that our paths would somehow cross organically, and then decided to jump on the opportunity to introduce myself and gush about the community she envisioned and then created. She was, is angelic and kind, beaming with the most genuine smile that isn't quite captured on social media. I felt like I was in the presence of a truly evolved and non-judgmental being that made me feel a bit intoxicated by her energy. She is a true visionary and showed me the new space they were building for workshops using reclaimed wood and all eco-friendly materials. My goal is to teach nutrition and mindful eating workshops there because the space is truly exceptional.

These connections with like-minded women and men have been therapeutic and transformational for me. We’ve discussed our personal and professional struggles and offer wisdom on how to come out feeling like a sparkly unicorn.  

After all, don’t we all want to heal ourselves and evolve to the bestest version we can be? It’s my constant companion and life dedication, personal and professional evolution!

And the best part, no more spiritual anorexia!

May you find what your soul truly craves for your evolution and true inner peace,


Jennifer Hnat