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Staying well whilst making change

Are you ready to campaign?

If you’re somebody who cares about ending the pain and suffering of people affected by eating disorders, you might be considering campaigning for change.

Campaigning is a great way to use your voice and experiences to bring about change and can be really empowering. But it can also be tough, emotionally draining, and sometimes triggering, especially if you have lived experience of an eating disorder.

So how do you know if you’re ready to campaign about something so close to your heart? Here are a few questions that might help you decide for yourself.

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Do you feel safe having conversations about eating disorders?

Would you feel okay if you didn’t get the result you wanted from campaigning?

Do you have a plan for how you would decompress after taking a campaign action?

Are you able to maintain your own wellbeing whilst working with decision-makers, such as politicians or clinicians, whose views you might disagree with?

Do you have a support system in place to help you prepare for and reflect on your campaigning activities?

If you answered no to some of these questions, you might not be ready to campaign and that is okay! There are lots of other ways you can help us, like fundraising for Beat.

If you do think you’re ready to campaign, it’s still really important to plan how you’ll protect your wellbeing. Here are our top tips:

  • Prioritise yourself. Sometimes this will mean stepping back from campaigning if you need to. There will never be any judgement from us and we will always encourage you to put yourself first.
  • Set some boundaries. How much time are you willing to give to campaigning? If you have lived experience, do you want to share this or not? Setting yourself some clear boundaries can help to ensure that you don’t burn out and you keep yourself safe.
  • Talk to your support network. Let them know what campaigning you’re doing and that you could use a chat with them to process it.
  • Schedule in some me-time. If you know you’re doing a lot of campaigning on a particular day, schedule in time to de-compress before and after. From mindfulness to reading to seeing friends, there are lots of ways to unwind, you just have to find what works for you.
  • Ask for help. If you feel like campaigning has triggered uncomfortable feelings that won’t go away and you need more significant support, please reach out for help. You can use our Helpline or speak to a professional like your GP.