The world is judgmental. It would be great if people didn’t judge others on seemingly every little thing. It would even be better if everyone liked everyone else, but sadly this in not the case.

You may have heard some opinions about yourself from others, and have tried to figure out how you can change those opinions. The issue here is, those opinions are not actually any of your business. How someone else feels about you is their issue. You only need to concern yourself with how you feel about you.

Trying to change every judgement others have of you will imprison you. Concentrate on what you think about yourself, you can improve things about yourself that YOU want to improve and do not concern yourself with others opinions of you. Control what you can control.

Learn more about our Dialectical Behavior Therapy at Healthy Futures. Healthy Futures has a full team of professional, experienced and qualified counselors, ready to help you at any time. Reach out to us at (480) 451-8500.


 Dr. Kim DiRé:  Hi, my name is Dr. Kim DiRé. I’m going to talk to you about when others judge us.

A lot of times in DBT, dialectical behavioral therapy, we talk about having a nonjudgmental stance, just notice, don’t judge. What happens when others judge us, and they’re not practicing that skill? What do we do?

Have you ever heard that an opinion of another about us is none of our business? That’s the truth. It isn’t any of our business.

How somebody feels about us or thinks about us is their opinion. What matters most is how we feel about ourselves and, if we need to improve something about ourselves, then we have the opportunity to do that.

When we start believing what others make up about us in their opinions, which isn’t fact, then we become imprisoned by pleasing that person, trying to get them to like us, or help them see us in a different way. Then, we have to do that.

Guess what? What if that other person over here has a different judgment about us, and now we have to move over to that side and help that judgment along? It’s none of our business.

We need to stick to what we know about ourselves, improve what we need about ourselves and, if someone has a judgment about us, we need to stay out of that business. It’s none of ours, and we can’t control it, anyway. Thank you.

Curiosity is truly a great thing. It is the perfect antidote to boredom. Look around you and there are things you can be curious about. If you see something that you want to know more about – great! Grab your computer or phone and research it.

Ask as skill, curiosity is a great way to learn from the people around you. Ask questions, look for different perspectives, your opinion – while valid – is not the only one.

A little curiosity can help you learn to understand others better and help you become a better communicator. There are so many benefits to curiosity! Want to learn more?

For more tips and other ways to help yourself visit the Healthy Futures website or YouTube channel.

Dr. Kim DiRé:  Hello, my name is Dr. Kim DiRé. Today, I want to talk to you about curiosity. I wanted to talk to you about curiosity and using it as a skill and developing it. Curiosity’s a great thing, and when I hear people say, “Oh, I’m bored.” I think, “I have the perfect solution: curiosity.”

As a skill, curiosity can do so many things. One of the curiosity killers is assuming that you know something. Be curious. Be interested. You can even be curious about being bored. The thing that helps nowadays is we have these search engines, and you can go and research stuff.

Sometimes, I marvel at something, and then, I can go immediately and research something. Another thing to be curious about is different perspectives in the world. Go ahead and ask people what do they think about something, so you can get an idea about how others think. Ask them how they feel, also. Be curious about that.

Don’t assume that your opinion is the only one. Be curious about others and how they see the world. I think you’ll learn how to communicate with people a little bit better. Ask them questions. Use curiosity as a way to entertain yourself through the world, connect with others.

I think you’ll find that the more curious you are, the more you develop that skill, the more enriched your life will be, so try it. I think you’ll like it. Thank you.

Life has its fair share of ups and downs. If you are struggling with depression, please hear this – it’s going to be OK! You matter and are worthy. It is OK to reach out and ask for help because no one – not one single person – has it all figured out. Everyone struggles from time to time.

One of the things that is so wonderful about you, is that you are the only you! Be proud of you who you are. If you are struggling, reach out and ask for help. There is zero shame in that. Everyone needs a little help some time. Reach out to a family member, friend or one of us at Healthy Futures. Just reach out because you matter!

Healthy Futures as a full team of professional, experienced and qualified counselors, ready to help you at any time. Reach out to us at (480) 451-8500.



Woman 1:  Here are three magical words that can lead to great things. Can we talk?

Woman 2:  Can we talk?

Woman 3:  Can we talk?

Woman 1:  Life can be difficult and sometimes even sad, but life is also wondrous and amazing.

Man:  Breathe, you’ll be OK.

Woman 2:  Breathe, you’ll be OK.

Woman 3:  Breathe, you’ll be OK.

Man:  Don’t worry. Almost no one has everything figured out. It’s OK to make mistakes. We all do.

Woman 1:  Depression is serious. Don’t let it fool you. You are worthy. You are more than worthy, more so than you can even imagine.

Woman 3:  If you are struggling right now, please hear this. Things get better.

Man:  Things get better.

Woman 1:  Things get better.

Woman 3:  There is no shame in asking for help. We all need help in this life.

Man:  We all need help in this life.

Woman 2:  It’s OK to ask for help.

Woman 3:  It’s OK to ask for help.

Woman 1:  It’s OK to ask for help.

Woman 2:  Really, it’s OK to ask for help.

Man:  We all feel scared at times.

Woman 1:  We all feel confused at times.

Woman 2:  Be proud of the person you are. There is no one exactly like you.

Man:  You are worthy.

Woman 3:  You are worthy.

Woman 2:  You are worthy.

Woman 1:  You are amazing.

Woman 3:  You are amazing.

Woman 2:  You are amazing.

Woman 1:  You are loved.

Woman 2:  You are loved.

Man:  You are loved.

Woman 2:  Embrace it, because it’s true.

Man:  Embrace it, because it’s true.

Woman 1:  Because it’s true.

We are taught as a child that life is not always fair, that things will not always go our way. However, as we grow into adulthood, it is easy to turn unfair situations into a time of self-pity, or even depression. Thankfully, there is an easy concept to avoid going down this path. Self-Compassion.

We often think of having compassion and gratitude for others but quickly forget the importance of having those same feelings for ourselves. In times of self-pity, it is important to stay positive and assess the situation. Compassion and gratitude are strong tools that can alter our mindset from negative feelings of unhappiness and failure to positive feelings of growth and opportunity.

So the next time something goes wrong, take a step back. Find it in yourself to have compassion for your own life as well as gratitude that something better will come from this. These simple acts will allow you to live better each day.

For more information on avoiding or coping with depression or more tips on self-compassion and gratitude, contact the Healthy Futures team today.


Dr. Kim DiRé:  Hello, my name is Dr. Kim DiRé. Today, I’m going to talk to you about self‑pity. I think we all do it. It’s a human thing. At the same time, what do you do when you have it? One of the things that we know about self‑pity is it really leads to a lot of depression and it really doesn’t help us.

A lot of times, life can be really, really unfair. If we start following that path and we start thinking about how unfair it is and we start feeling sorry for ourselves, we really disconnect and isolate ourselves from other people. It doesn’t help because then we remove ourselves from things or the experiences that can move us out of self‑pity.

Something that can help is compassion for ourselves. If something bad happens or it’s unfair, if we could just empathize with ourselves and really have compassion and be gentle on ourselves, it moves us out of self‑pity into something that we can connect with others with, including ourselves.

It can lift depression, as well as another tool by being grateful for what you do have. A lot of times in unfair or adverse situations, it’s actually the friction that moves us to something of growth or something that’s better.

If you can move self‑pity by using two tools, compassion for yourself in something that’s gone wrong and then also gratitude where the friction of something that’s adverse can actually lead to something better.

Try that instead of self‑pity and let’s see how you do. Live that a little bit more in your life and I think you’ll feel that life feels a little better.

Are you part of the transgender community or do you identify yourself as being transgender? Do you have a healthy relationship with food? With your body?

As part of the transgender community, you are actually at a higher risk for developing unhealthy habits like those of an eating disorder. This might partly be due to gender dysphoria, the feeling that your external experience might not match what is happening on the inside for you. As a result of this you might look to unhealthy eating habits as a means of modifying your body.

At Healthy Futures, we are here to remind you that YOU are really worth it – worth taking care of and worth accepting. If you feel like your relationship with food has become, or will become unhealthy, let us help you in your transition. Get started today and contact Healthy Futures at (480) 451-8500.



Dr. J.R. Evans:  Hi. My name is Dr. J.R. Evans. I’m a licensed psychologist here at Healthy Futures. I’ve had a really fortunate experience of being able to work with so many transgender individuals throughout their transitions, certainly. Also specifically, in working with them who might also have an eating disorder.

If you identify as being transgender, did you know you are at a higher risk for developing an eating disorder? I’m sure that actually makes a lot of sense for you because it’s about that gender dysphoria, that feeling of your external experience not matching what’s happening on the inside for you.

Imagine that you might do things to modify the body in certain ways that could actually be unhealthy. What we want to do here at Healthy Futures is actually help you in your transitional step to becoming who you are on the outside in a very safe and healthy way.

Remember, you’re really worth it. You’re worth taking care of yourself. You’re worth accepting who you are. You’re worth participating in this life that you have.

If you’re part of the transgender community or identify as being transgender, know that you have support here at Healthy Futures. If you feel like your relationship with food or with your body has become unhealthy, then let us help you. Let us help you understand why that is or how that is. Also, how to help you in your transition. Thank you.

The best practice for healthy eating is being consistent with your eating every day.  But, before you can practice healthy eating, you need to know what that looks like for you.  It may be different from one person to the next.  So, ask yourself some questions.

Is healthy eating about eating a variety of food groups?  Is it eating three square meals a day or eating six smaller meals a day?  When in the day do you eat?  Once you determine what healthy eating is for you, be consistent with it every day.  Eat right, your way, every day and you will have a healthier life.

For more tips on a healthy eating lifestyle, contact us at Healthy Futures in Scottsdale today at (480) 451-8500.

Hi. My name is Kim Guenther, Registered Dietitian for the Healthy Futures program in Scottsdale. National Nutrition Month is in March and this year’s slogan is, “Eat Right, Your Way, Every Day.”

What does eating right look like for you? Does it mean eating a variety of the food groups? Does it mean eating three times a day or six times a day? Really being able to identify your way of eating is by far the best practice that you can make for healthy living. Then being able to do that on a consistent basis – being able to do that every day.

Read more about eating right, your way, every day.

We all were taught as children that kindness is important, but being kind to yourself and others is more meaningful than you might think. Being kind to others and yourself releases the hormone oxytocin, which gives you a physiological boost. So something as small as a smile or holding the door for another person, or doing something larger like volunteering or supporting a friend will help you socially, emotionally, and physiologically.

We know that loneliness depletes the immune system and is not beneficial to our long-term mental health. The simple way to combat loneliness is with kindness that connects us to our self and to others in a beneficial way.

Give yourself a boost – socially, emotionally and physiologically – be kind to yourself and others! For more information on good mental health, contact Healthy Futures today.

Dr. Kim DiRé:  Hello, my name is Dr. Kim DiRé. Today, I want to talk to you about kindness and what it means to you and your physiological system. Kindness releases oxytocin, the connective attachment hormone in your body. This thing that is acts of behaviors that you would do for another or even to yourself ‑‑ because I want you to think about kindness towards yourself as well ‑‑ is actually a physiological boost that we can give to ourselves.

A simple smile, hello to another, is going to be a simple act of kindness, and then there’s other bigger ones, ones where you go and you help somebody elder or hand hold somebody who’s maybe been in the hospital or really work with somebody that’s struggling with maybe a project and you want to give them support.

Any kind of act of kindness towards yourself or another is going to help you in a chemical way. This place where loneliness happens is not beneficial to our health long‑term. There’s been so many scientific proof that loneliness in this place really depletes the energy source or the immune system in our body. The remedy for that is kindness, which connects us to our self and another in a real beneficial way.

Whether you’re offering to someone a little smile or hello for their day, a hug, or doing an act of kindness, know that you are benefiting yourself in a social way, an emotional way, and also a physiological medical way.

Keep doing this act of kindness, pieces for yourself and others. I think you’ll really like it. Thank you.

Summer is celebrated as a time to soak up some sun in a bathing suit, to break out the sun dresses for those barbeques, and to get a break from the daily heat in some shorts. But, for those who have a negative body image, summertime is not a welcomed or celebrated time.  It can be a time plagued with negative thoughts about appearances, that can lead to anxiety, depression, and shame.

Don’t let that happen to you this summer!  Start with a few simple ideas to shift your thinking from something negative to something more positive.

Try to appreciate what your body can do, like waking up in the morning, carrying in the groceries, walking the dog, or giving you the good feeling of laughing with your friends.  Then, get out there and accept those invitations!  Your friends don’t care what you look like, they just want to be with you.  Focusing your attention on your friends is much more positive.

So, this summer, shift your thinking and have fun!


Sheri Robenstine:  Hi. I’m Sheri from Healthy Futures in Scottsdale, Arizona. Because it’s Arizona, I want to talk a little bit about body image and summer weather in Arizona.

With over 100 degree temperatures, that means shorts, summer dresses, and swimsuits, which, of course, if you have negative body image, that brings up a huge issue in the summertime.

A couple things that I’d like to say about improving body image and enjoying your summer is number one, when you’re having negative body image thoughts, start to appreciate your body for what it can do.

Appreciate that you woke up today, that you’re able to carry something to that party, that you’re able to walk there, that you’re able to swim. Really look at the capabilities of your body, rather than being so negative about the outside appearance of your body.

Number two, when you go to those summer events, actually be there. Be present in those summer events. When you’re invited, don’t say, “I’m not good enough to leave the house,” and stay home.

When you’re invited to Memorial Day barbecues or something that happens over Fourth of July weekend, actually go. Laugh with your friends. Feel what it’s like to be at those events.

If you feel comfortable being with friends and family, they don’t care what you’re wearing. It doesn’t matter to them if you have shorts on or a swimsuit. They just want you to be there and have fun with them.

When you tell yourself really negative things about your body, those things tend to become true. They don’t actually help you change the outer appearance of your body.

You just tell yourself negative things and your brain starts to believe them, which ends up in anxiety, depression, and shame. It doesn’t actually end up with positive body features.

We want to start doing things that are opposite when it comes to body image. When you have yourself hear negative things, tell yourself something positive. Enjoy time with friends and get your attention off of your body and on to the people that you’re around, on to the actual activity that you’re doing.

When negative body image thoughts come up, what you want to do is appreciate your body for what it actually can do. Number two, have fun at the events that you’re going to go to. Get yourself out of the house and go to those events. Bye.

Thank you so much. Enjoy your summer.

Unfortunately, bullying in schools is common.  It typically occurs in places out of view of an adult, such as on the playground, on the school bus, in the cafeteria, hallways or locker rooms.  And, in this modern society, it also happens via technology on social media.

If you are being bullied, there are things you can do to help the situation.  Tell someone.  Find someone you trust.  It could be a family member, friend or a teacher.  Most schools have training to deal with these situations.  So, you don’t have to be afraid or live with the shame of being bullied.

Bullying in schools or anywhere is not okay and should be dealt with.

Dr. J.R. Evans:  Hi, my name is Dr. J.R. Evans. I’m a licensed psychologist here at Healthy Futures. As school is back in session, I imagine bullying might become an issue that we’d want to address.

For all those kids out there who may be struggling, one of the things I encourage you to do is to talk to somebody. Find somebody, whether it’s at home, within your friends, or at school, that feels safe. Tell them what is happening. Please do not hold on to that shame inside.

Bullying is not OK.

We all experience trauma to some degree or another in our lives.  But, why do some people experience profound effects on their emotional, physical and spiritual wellbeing?  This can lead to symptoms of anxiety, depression, anger, addiction and chronic pain.  To recover from trauma, we need to understand the triune brain.

The triune brain is made up of three areas.  The reptilian brain controls self-protective responses.  The limbic system controls memory and emotion.  And, the prefrontal cortex controls thoughts.

In the face of trauma, the reptilian brain needs to release energy to carry out its physiological survival responsibilities.  This cycle can become interrupted when the limbic system holds a memory or emotion related to or the prefrontal cortex generalizes thoughts associated to the experience.  Those can sometimes mask the threat, whether there is a real one or not.  When this happens the reptilian brain in a way, becomes confused and cannot respond appropriately.  That’s when we hang on to that trauma.

The good news is we can work with our body system, to complete the self-protective responses that didn’t get completed.  That trauma can be released, or the blocked energies of trauma can be released.  Once this happens, we can stay present in our lives and begin to recover.

Dr. Kim DiRé:  Hi. My name is Kim DiRé. I’m a psychotherapist. This is part two of a series on our brain puppet. I was telling you in the first part, that I created a brain puppet to help adults learn about their three-part brain. Here’s the first part. I don’t know if you remember but it’s the reptilian brain built-in safety.

It’s the one. The hardwired mechanism. Very simple, simple system that is built in this hardwired piece that under threat there’s fight, flight, freeze for this piece of the brain to do. It will do it as long as it’s instinctual and isn’t covered up by anything, or didn’t learn anything that was new, which the limbic systems can oftentimes do.

The limbic system is the one that holds the memory. Here’s the amygdala. It holds the memory for emotion. Sometimes emotion can be held in this memory so that when the feeling comes, there is still the threat or the feel that, “OK. We need to be under safety or on guard.” Some anxiety might come up.

The last time anxiety came up there was a fear over life, a justifiable threat of life. That’s when this mechanism is going to be perhaps not instinctual anymore, but covered up by emotion. A lot of times then when anxiety comes up for humans, the limbic system has literally masked the instinctual piece for the reptilian brain to actually see if there’s a justifiable threat.

Now we’ve got another mask also, is that prefrontal cortex, the third piece. It can come over here and create thoughts, wonderful thoughts, but also thoughts maybe that we’re not in threat and we put ourselves in harm’s way, or that we are under threat.

Everything that the prefrontal cortex sees can be generalized so much, that life is so threatening that we can feel sometimes as if the person is going to die or under threat. This happens a lot of times when people are traumatized. They’re traumatized in a way where there’s actually maybe an actual event that says, “I’m under threat.”

An event that causes fear, but a person is immobilized. What happens then is this logical brain and the limbic system creates this memory, and generalizes or fogs over the instinctual piece, and then when a four-legged creature comes around it’s so generalized that even this feels threatening.

This explains some of the pieces that happen in trauma for humans. No one really gets out of our life without feeling some trauma. Sometimes there’s big traumas, and the self-protective responses that are happening for and by the reptilian brain don’t get to be completed in the physiological piece or in the body piece.

This continues over and over for the past event till they come present. We want to work with our body system, to complete self-protective responses that didn’t get completed. That trauma can be released, or the blocked energies of trauma can be released, and someone can stay present on purpose.

I’m going to continue to give many lessons about the triune brain, and how our bodies respond and our brains respond to trauma, the neurophysiological feedback that happens for us as humans. We can help you become aware of maybe perhaps some things that you go through, and some of the things that you can help to create safety for yourself.

Please stay tuned. I’ll teach you some of those techniques for the next brain puppet lesson. Bye-bye. Thank you.

Do you remember learning about the brain in science class years ago?  Maybe you observed your teacher dissect the parts of the brain.  The point of that lesson wasn’t to make you squeamish.  It was to help you understand how the brain works so you could understand yourself and how you experience the world.

How you respond to and experience trauma and how you function as a person in society can all be explained by the triune brain, our human brain.  There are three parts.

The first part is the reptilian brain which is built on survival and keeps us alive.  Our instincts for flight, fight, freeze and procreation all come from this part of the brain.  And, the cerebellum controls movement, a physiological response to keeping your safe.

The second part is the limbic system.  This area controls motivation and emotion involved in feeding, reproductive behavior, and parental behavior.  It explains why animals innately stay in herds, pods or tribes and babies rely on mothers for safety and survival.

The third part is the prefrontal cortex.  This area provides the ability for language, abstract thinking, planning, and perception.  It allows you to keep track of time, what happened first and then last.  And, this area allows you to communicate with others.

Understanding the science behind the brain can explain some of our own behaviors.  Many of those behaviors are innate and instinctual.  But, having an awareness of that can help guide you in how you understand behaviors and respond.  And, this can lead you to a more enriched life.

Dr. Kim DiRé:  Hi. My name is Kim DiRé. I’m a psychotherapist, and I used to be a teacher. Today I want to teach you about the triune brain, or the brain that has three parts. Our human brain. When I taught school I used to have a live brain, or one that used to be alive, of a sheep or a pig that a hunter father or a rancher father would give me.

I would cut it open in class and we would learn all about the different parts of the brain, and how the brain actually learns so that children can learn how they learned best. I can’t do that with adults. They get too squeamish. So what I did is I made a brain puppet to teach adults, and I want to teach you with my brain puppet.

The first part of the triune brain or the three-part brain is the reptilian brain, the brain stem, the one that keeps us alive, the one built in survival. This is a cerebellum on the back-end of this brain stem which is part of our movement, because we remember that this brain is also tied to a body, a physiological response to the safety of this brain.

This piece, this reptilian brain, is an 800,000-year-old brain. It is a mechanism that’s built in survival, fight, flight, freeze, and procreation, because there’s a survival in the lineage.

The second part of the triune brain is the limbic system. It’s about a 500,000 year-old piece that also at the same time not by coincidence, the uterus was formed for female mammals. Now we have an emotional system that’s built with herds, with tribes, with pods, where babies need to rely on the herd, the mother, for their own survival. The nurturing piece.

Also it’s a safety piece as well because if the herd’s startled, that the others would look around, they could see that there’s going to be a stampede so they could all save each other with each other. If there is a startle and everybody else is calm, then there is a calming of the system as well.

The third part about this triune brain is the prefrontal cortex. It has a left hemisphere and a right hemisphere. It’s the logical piece, the piece that understands that you have a schedule and that today is Monday. It keeps times. It keeps a timeline of what happened first, what happened next. It’s the part that is thinking brain, the speaking brain, the one that communicates with others.

What I’d like to do with this triune brain puppet is I’d like you to continue with different lessons, for you to learn about the neurological, physiological piece that happens for humans especially pieces that happen in trauma, so that you can learn more and be more aware of what and how you function as a person in the society, and perhaps even some awareness to create a more enriched way that you go through life.

Spring is almost here.  Very soon, the gardens will wake up and those buds that have been waiting all winter long will feel the energy from the sun and begin to bloom.  We will see and smell beautiful flowers everywhere.  It’s such a happy and joyful time.

In a metaphorical way, we are much like flowers.  Many of us are also stuck in a frozen bud-like state.  When life becomes stressful, sometimes we don’t know how to get ourselves unstuck.  How do we find that energy that will lead us to a more beautiful life?

Sometimes just being aware that we are stuck can bring about that energy.  Rely on your five basic senses.  What can you feel?  What do you see?  What do you hear, smell, and taste?  Paying attention and noticing those things sometimes is all you need to mobilize toward a more beautiful life.

This spring, practice being more aware within yourself.  Soon, you’ll find the energy that will lead you to your happier and more joyful self.

Dr. Kim DiRé:  Hi, my name is Kim DiRé, and I’m a psychotherapist. Today, I’m going to use the metaphor of spring, since it’s springtime, to talk to you about awakening – awakening out of a freeze, or numbness into something that is mobilized energy.

One of the ways that we do that is we use the tool of attention, just noticing, noticing in a non-judgmental way in order to mobilize, or gather this mobilization of energy.

A lot of times, we’re frozen, or we feel stuck. Sometimes, just by becoming aware that we’re stuck, is enough to start to move things. Usually, we do that by the basic five senses and noticing how we feel, or how we see, visualize things, listen, smell, taste. That’s some of the places that we can use attention, or noticing.

A lot of times, you’ll hear a non-judgmental stance in noticing. By using that, it’s limitless. A lot of times, it will just change our lifestyle, or change a behavior. A lot of times, by just noticing and becoming aware, or awakening from this frozen to this life-giving bloom of springtime, we can start mobilizing, or using that energy of attention and awareness that comes from paying attention with our five senses, to creating something that gives us an enriched life.

It becomes limitless as we become more aware.

Would you know what to do when you recognize depression or anxiety with some eating disorder behavior in a loved one?  In the following video, Dr. Kim DiRé of Healthy Futures in Scottsdale, Arizona offers tips to help you get your loved one the help he or she needs.

It starts with good listening, being curious and offering resources.  For more information and to get help with depression, anxiety and recognizing eating disorders, visit the Healthy Futures website at

Dr. Kim DiRé:  Hello, my name is Dr. Kim DiRé. The holidays are coming up, and your loved ones are going to be coming home. If you start to notice that your loved ones during the holidays are having a little bit of a shift in mood, like some depression and anxiety, and you’re recognizing some eating disorder behavior, I want to give you a few tips of what you can do for those situations.

One is you can listen versus judging them. Another one is that you can be curious versus being assumptive or accusatory. The other one is you want to offer resourcing rather than threatening them. You want to give them resources, so they can help themselves, like coming to Healthy Futures, which offers individual eating disorder therapy or intensive outpatient eating disorder therapy.

Offer them some really good listening, being curious, and offer them resources, so they can go and help themselves. I think you’ll find a better position that you’ll be in by helping your loved ones and getting them the help they need when they come home for the holidays and you’re noticing something isn’t quite right.

Thank you.




Bulimia is a medical condition signified by an insatiable desire to keep eating and eating until you gorge yourself, all in a short span of time. Bulimia Nervosa is defined by the National Eating Disorders Association as, “a serious, potentially life-threatening eating disorder characterized by a cycle of bingeing and compensatory behaviors such as self-induced vomiting designed to undo or compensate for the effects of binge eating.” Listed below are symptoms, warning signs of bulimia, causes of bulimia, and bulimia treatment options.

The Symptoms:

  • often consuming large amounts of food followed by self-induced vomiting to try and counter that action and/or prevent weight gain;
  • feelings of being out of control while binge-eating; and
  • loss of self-esteem/self-image as it relates to the perceived image of the body.

The Warning Signs:

  • large amounts of food disappearing within short time frames (i.e. finding empty wrappers or empty containers as evidence of foods eaten);
  • several trips to the bathroom after meals, finding empty wrappers from laxatives or diuretics;
  • atypical swelling of the jaw or cheek area;
  • rigid exercise routine, regardless of weather or illness;
  • withdrawal from friends/family;
  • stained or discoloration of teeth;
  • calluses on back of hands (due to the practice of self-induced vomiting);
  • significant lifestyle changes to accommodate time for binge-and-purge activity;
  • behavioral changes wherein dieting and weight loss become uppermost priority; and
  • continuing exercise routine despite injuries brought on by exercising too much.

The Causes of Bulimia

While the exact causes of Bulimia Nervosa are not thoroughly known or completely understood, the main focus on causes suggest that the following are intimately tied to the condition.

  • Poor self-esteem;
  • Stressful life situations/life changes;
  • Negative body self-image;
  • History of trauma or abuse; and/or
  • Activities or careers in which there is significant focus on appearance.

Bulimia Treatment Options

Most treatment options for Bulimia Nervosa include psychological counseling and possibly even medication for depression, in some instances. Counseling should be considered long-term treatment. If depression or substance abuse are issues also suffered, treatment could take longer.

Healthy Futures provides an intensive outpatient program (IOP) for Bulimia. The program includes education on nutrition, help with meal planning, group therapy, providing education for family members, and DBT skills training. Learn to recognize the warning signs of Bulimia.  Those suffering from Bulimia need to learn new life skills that will help them cope with the symptoms of this disorder. Let us help you get your life back.

Signs of Eating Disorders Scottsdale Healthy Futures

Acknowledging you may suffer from an eating disorder can be difficult. For those who love you, seeing what’s happening and not be able to help can be heartbreaking. Some eating disorders are easier to hide from family and friends, but there are tell-tale signs to look for that can help identify signs of eating disorders.

If you suspect that you may have an eating disorder, or if you are concerned that a friend or loved one may have an eating disorder, look for some of the following signs and then seek help. At Healthy Futures we offer outpatient treatment specializing in anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating disorders.

There are a few common signs of eating disorders that can be a part of any disorders. Other signs tend to be more specific to types of eating disorders.

Common Signs of Eating Disorders:

  • Obsession with appearance based on weight or shape
  • Excessive exercising
  • Eating in private or making excuses not to eat with others

Anorexia Specific Signs:

  • Low body weight
  • Extreme limiting of calories or an overly restrictive diet
  • Skipping meals or a fear of eating with others
  • Overuse of diuretics and laxatives

Bulimia Specific Signs:

  • Binge eating which is repeatedly eating large amounts usually in the form of high calorie foods
  • Frequent trips to the bathroom during or after meal. (Usually to purge)
  • Damaged or callused hands from forced vomiting

A different type of disorder involves overeating without the purging or exercising. It generally can be associated with the inability to deal with emotional experiences.

Binge Eating Specific Signs:

  • Eating too much with no control to stop
  • Feelings of shame and regret after eating
  • No purging or excessive exercising after binge
  • Sometimes gaining of weight or obesity

Healthy Futures is the longest running outpatient program in Scottsdale, AZ. We offer individual and family therapy, nutrition education and meal planning.

Really listening to someone means staying present with them in conversation.  But, it’s human nature to stray from conversation.  We all do it.  Sometimes, we anticipate what they will say before they say it.  Sometimes, we think about our response before they finish talking.  Or, sometimes our mind drifts to other places.  So, being aware of these blocks to listening helps us with our communication skills.

Dr. Kim DiRé of Healthy Futures in Scottsdale Arizona describes the 10 blocks to listening.  When you understand what the blocks are, you can recognize them in your conversations and learn to block the blocks.  Not only will this help you enjoy conversation more but it will encourage stronger relationships with people.  If you would like to know more about Healthy Futures and the resources they provide, visit us online

Watch the video and/or read the transcript below:

Dr. Kim DiRé:  Hello. My name is Dr. Kim DiRé, and I want to talk to you today about Blocks to Listening. We all do it. It’s a human thing. One of the things is we can be aware that it’s happening, so that we really listen to somebody and stay present. It’ll help our communication.

One of the best communication skills that we can do is listening to another person when we are in contact with them, and they are telling us something. The 10 blocks to listening are, number one, mind reading. Be aware that it’s happening, so that we really listen to somebody and stay present.

The second block to listening is rehearsing. Already preparing in your mind what you’re going to say to the other person in response while they’re still talking to us. Another one is filtering. Only picking out certain parts of what someone is saying, especially the parts where we’re going to make sure that they’re wrong.

Another block to listening is judging. Evaluating what a person’s saying while they’re saying it. Daydreaming is something that a lot of us do. We’re off thinking about something else in some fantasy land, while someone is taking to us. Another block to listening is advising. Without being asked for advice, we’re giving it and offering a solution, when someone is just telling us something.

Another one that’s really harsh is sparring. Really playing the devil’s advocate and getting in there and causing friction, or a fight, or a contrast to what they’re saying. Something that goes along with this that blocks the listening is being right. Making sure that your argument or your position is right, and there’s is wrong. That definitely breaks communication, and breaks the relationship immediately.

Another one is derailing. Going off a subject. Moving away from what is actually being talked about at that time. The last one is placating somebody. Just going ahead and accepting what they’re saying, just to agree with them just to be liked, or to go ahead and have the conversation done. “Yeah, yeah, yeah. You’re right,” but you’re not really listening to them.

Those are 10 blocks to listening. When you don’t use them, I think you’ll find that listening is going to be a lot easier. Be aware if you have them come into your listening, and really block the blocks. Stay present, enjoy listening to someone, and you’ll find your communication is going to be a lot better. Enjoy.

Having a lucky day is not just about having good luck.  There’s no trick to it, lucky people just have certain things in common.  They have a positive perspective and attitude toward life.  If you too want to be lucky make some changes to your perspective.  How do you see opportunities in your life?  What is your attitude toward things that don’t work out the way you hoped?  With a few adjustments, you too can have a lucky day.

In the following video, Dr. Kim DiRé of Healthy Futures in Scottsdale, Arizona highlights what makes people lucky in life and the simple changes that can be made for mental health.  If you are interested in making some positive changes in your life and achieving good mental health, visit the Healthy Futures website to learn more.

Dr. Kim DiRé:  Hi. Today’s your lucky day. I’m Dr. Kim DiRé, talking to you about luck. A lot of times we hear the saying, “The harder you work, the luckier you get.”

As a matter of fact, what happens with lucky people is it’s really their perspective on life and how they’re attitude is about opportunities that come up or ones that seem to be a closed door.

They see that as lucky as well. Lucky people just have a nice perspective on life. When something doesn’t work out for them, they feel that that’s really lucky that that didn’t work out for them and another opportunity is going to come along.

Lucky people also see opportunities and they’re very flexible to take it on and make something for themselves with that opportunity. If you want to be lucky, start having the perspective that things are turning out for you, whether they’re closed door or open door, and start having more lucky days.

anorexia symptoms Healthy Futures Scottsdale AZAnorexia is one of the most well-known eating disorders. Many celebrities have struggled with it over the years including Karen Carpenter, Diana Ross, Sally Field, Jane Fonda, and even the Crown Princess of Sweden. Just because it’s well-known, though, doesn’t always mean it’s easy to spot. In fact, many people aren’t familiar enough with the signs of anorexia to seek help when it becomes necessary. Understanding what to watch for is absolutely key in ensuring the sufferer gets the help he or she needs as soon as possible.

The Physical Symptoms

Those who suffer from anorexia are likely to appear very thin. They may suffer from fatigue and insomnia. Dizziness and fainting are quite common, as is thinning hair. The fingers sometimes suffer from a bluish discoloration, and he or she might have dry skin. Low blood pressure is also usually present, as is dehydration.

The Emotional Symptoms

Anorexia isn’t exclusively a physical condition, though. There are often mental symptoms that accompany the disorder as well. You may notice a refusal to eat or a denial of hunger. Preoccupation with food is quite common, as is a fear of gaining weight. Lying about food and eating often occurs. And, a lack of emotion including social withdrawal may occur.

Warning Signs

If you see any of the following become routine, seek help immediately.

  • Regular skipping of meals
  • Routine excuses for not eating
  • Consumption of only a few low-calorie foods
  • Rigid eating rituals
  • Repeated weighing
  • Refusal to eat in public
  • Complaints about weight
  • Calluses on knuckles caused by induced vomiting

Eating disorders like anorexia are always serious, and they can have life altering consequences. If you suspect someone you love may have an eating disorder, please seek help immediately. You can contact Healthy Futures in Scottsdale with concerns at (480) 451-8500. We also offer offers this FREE online screening to guide you in determining whether to seek further help and/or a professional care.

Emotional Eating Healthy Futures Scottsdale AZDo you sometimes find yourself at the refrigerator door at unusual times?  Do you have a hard time stopping after one cookie or half the bag?  Ever notice that you eat a bigger meal after a hard day at work?  If you answered yes to any of these questions, it’s possible that eating is a coping mechanism for you to satisfy your emotional needs, instead of a way to satisfy your hunger.

Emotional eating is common.  We’ve all been there.  But, when emotional eating affects your weight, health and overall well being, it may be time to understand what drives those habits.  Often, people seek the comfort or distraction of food when experiencing negative feelings like stress, loneliness, sadness, anxiety and boredom.  These may come to us through major life events like death and divorce.  But, more often, it’s the daily stresses in our lives.  In addition, positive feelings may trigger overeating at the holiday celebration or indulging in dessert after a romantic dinner.  Or, it may come from a learned behavior.  For example, a child who is given candy for a job well done may associate food as a reward later in life.  Or, the child who is given a cookie to stop crying may continue to soothe hurt feelings with cookies.

Whatever the cause may be for emotional eating, the end result is often the same: an unhealthy cycle continues.  Your emotions trigger you to overeat, you beat yourself up for getting off your weight loss track, you feel bad and you overeat again.  If you’ve tried self-help options, but still can’t control emotional eating, consider professional help.

Healthy Futures’ Emotional Eating Intensive Outpatient Program (EEIOP) is a specialty program specifically designed to help people start a happy and healthy relationship with food.  The program offers group and individual therapy from trained and licensed counselors, coaching, exercise support, DBT (dialectical behavioral therapy), “mindful meal” experiences, nutrition support.  Free yourself from emotional eating and call Healthy Futures today at (480) 451-8500 to learn more about the EEIOP program.  And, visit our website, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter pages.

Ilene Smith, an expert with the Eating Disorder Resource Center and consultant to Healthy Futures, gets right to the point at why “Yo-Yo Dieting” doesn’t succeed over the long term. You might lose the weight for a few years but it always comes back.

Healthy Futures can help address the underlying emotional “cancer” that is affecting and shaping the relationship with food. It is a center that wants to help discover the root of why you eat and will help you reorganize feelings towards food to make a healthy connection and not have it be your best friend or way to escape. People can become obsessed with food or over focused on food or their body.

Treatment centers like Healthy Futures will help manage the emotions associated with eating, teach mindfulness, you will learn about nutrition and movement. It also provides a place to connect with people, to connect with yourself and learn how to make a healthy, beneficial connection with food. If you would like more information about Healthy Futures and more resources we provide visit

Ilene Smith: Hi, this is Ilene Smith, here at Healthy Futures to speak to you about a recent study that was published on yo‑yo dieting and cancer. The study concluded that yo‑yo dieting does not increase your rate of having 15 different types of cancers.

I’m not sure what the specific ones were, but the point is that what the study did not discuss was the emotional cancer that comes along with yo‑yo dieting. What’s emotional cancer? Emotional cancer is the shame, depression, sense of failure, sense of loss, sense of hopelessness that comes along with yo‑yo dieting.

A part of the issue is that yo‑yo dieting also changes a person’s relationship with food. Often people become obsessed with food and over focused on food and their body. We work to, for lack of a better word, to undo that relationship or reorganize it so that food can be a part of a person’s life and not be lover, best friend, or a way to escape living in the world.

What we teach you here at Healthy Futures is that diets don’t work. The statistics tell us that. 99 percent of people that go on diets gain the weight back within one to five years. One might ask, “Well, why?”

The main reason is because if you don’t go on an emotional diet and resolve the underlying emotional issues that cause you to overeat and binge eat, you can’t live your life successfully. When I say that, I mean if you can’t love who you are and love the body that you have, you are setting yourself up for failure.

What we do at Healthy Futures is we work in several different areas. One is we work to help you find tools to manage your emotions, emotional regulation, distress tolerance. We teach mindfulness. We teach about connecting, connecting with others versus connecting with your food.

The other components of our program include nutrition, movement, and talk therapy. A combination of all of these things often leads our clients to find their inner voice, find ways to speak their truth rather than using food as a voice.

What we often see is that people leave Healthy Futures living their life more wholeheartedly, living a fuller life, living a life that’s not focused on food.