Continuing to explore the thought, "To be an effective therapist, I need to free myself first"

A: I’m just finishing up school to be an eating disorder therapist but still struggling with some overeating myself. This overeating really bothers me, and I am actively working on moving past it through SCS. I have a belief that I can’t truly be the successful therapist I want to be until I am free of overeating issues and feel a sense of control in this area of my life. here are questions I was asked here in response to my last post about this issue:

Here is my thought that I really believe:
“To be an effective therapist, I need to free myself first.”

Here were the other questions you asked based on that belief.

• Do I want to think these thoughts on purpose? Why or why not?
Yes, I know its pressure I’m putting on myself but I also hope that these thoughts push me to be successful myself.

• Why do I need to free myself first? How do I feel about this why?
To demonstrate that it is possible. I feel that it will be much harder to help people if I cant free myself first bc I wont be able to speak freely, honestly. My answers for them will be coming from text books and articles – not from a place of solid BELIEF.
I believe this “why” so strongly that its hard to see the possibility that it might not be true. I imagine if I were trying to learn from someone who had experienced the same thing im experiencing but they still hadn’t gotten to the other side of it.
I would think they are not an expert
I would think they don’t know what they are doing
I would think they are not helping me from a place of “knowing”—they are just regurgitating what they think “might” be helpful info.

So I think I feel really passionate about this “why”. I like it bc I think it will make my work as a therapist really intuitive and full of passion and belief…instead of a guessing game
I think it will make it so I can easily connect with my clients, instead of clients zoning out bc they can tell I don’t know what I’m talking about.

• How will I know I’ve freed myself? How will I know I’m an effective therapist?
I will know I’ve freed myself when I no longer feel “struggle” with food. Overeating is not something I’m interested in. and I KNOW I can handle any emotion without panicking—I do not have FEAR of overeating anymore.

• What other possible factors could make me an effective therapist already?
Well, I already deeply understand their struggle. On a personal level.
I deeply care and want them to feel better and live a life free of eating challenges
I still struggle with food but its not nearly as bad as it used to be

9. Am I willing to be wrong about thought #7? Why? (I would never go to a therapist who’s in my current shoes)

I guess I would be interested in going to a therapist who was where I am in my journey bc I feel much better about myself, I have direction in my life that I love, I’m stepping into my future self, I like myself and my life, I have a great marriage.

But if I found out my therapist still used food to soothe herself when she couldn’t deal with strong emotions, I would question the knowledge and recommendations that she made to me. I would wonder how she can recommend a healing process/exercises when she knows they don’t work for her.