Eating Disorder Business Growth Tips

Eating Disorder Business Growth Tips

Eating Disorder Business Growth Tips

I just re-planted some cucumber seeds in my garden, to replace a small plant that didn’t do so well. I live in the mountains outside of Denver, Colorado – and it’s been a very cold Spring-into-Summer here.

As an avid gardener, I’m a bit baffled when my plants don’t thrive here – but as the saying goes, “it’s always something.” Living at high altitude, where certain plant species don’t grow well. An overly cold start to the season, including snow and hail. Deer and elk breaking the garden fence and eating my seedlings! But despite the challenges, I persevere.

For me, there is nothing more rewarding than picking that first cherry tomato, biting into its warmth from the sun, and savoring every succulent taste! All of that plant food and water, fencing to protect my plants while still allowing me access to provide care, and research about how to best support my garden’s growth in this mountain climate – all of it is so worth it, when the harvest comes in.

I hope you can see my metaphor by now – how growing a garden is much like growing a business – specifically, an eating disorder recovery coaching, clinician counseling, or nutrition and dietitian business. And, how we need to provide that nourishment, safe environment, and best practices to support our clients.

In the 25+ years that I’ve owned a business for the treatment of eating disorders and related issues, I’ve encountered many obstacles along the way. I’ve learned a lot of things the hard way. But somehow, I continue to find my way.

Here are three eating disorder business growth tips for you, using a garden metaphor:

  1. Seek to Give vs Get – of course we all have bills to pay, and we “need to get money.” But if that is your focus, it’s like screaming at a tiny seedling, “GIVE ME A TOMATO, NOW!” Get out of your own fear, scarcity, failure – and shift into hope, abundance and success. Ask the very important question, “What is the best way that I can be of service to others?” and await the answer.
  2. Open Up to Your True Gifts – the answer may surprise you. I moved to the mountains outside of Denver, Colorado last year, and I thought that this was so that I could focus 100% on training clinicians in my method of Eating Disorder Intuitive Therapy (EDIT)™ – and, so that I could finally finish my next book, which I started many years ago. It’s like the raspberries that I want to grow here – I need to create a very secure type of fence, so that the bears will not break in to devour my delicious crop! That’s going to require a lot of time. As much as I love raspberries (and the idea of “living the author’s life”), I am being called in a different direction right now. I’m driving 45-minutes back into Denver, three times a week, to meet with eating disorder and substance use disorder clients (“Are you kidding me? I just moved from Denver, where I could WALK to my old office!”). There is an incredible need for my services as a Licensed Addiction Counselor and Certified Eating Disorder Specialist (I’m sure you all know about the “opioid epidemic,” and I specialize in working with clients who struggle with eating disorders and substance use disorders). YES – the raspberries (and my next book) can wait until another season.
  3. Partner with Others – it doesn’t have to be so hard! My neighbor is training to become a Master Gardener. My other neighbor across the street has an elaborate garden system, with drip irrigation, fencing all around and hail screens above, plus screens below the garden boxes (so the pocket gophers don’t pull her crops into their borrows and consume them)! Although I know a lot about gardening, mountain gardening is new to me. These women are experts at what they do – why wouldn’t I ask questions and seek advice from them? Likewise, there are many resources and people who are available to help you grow your business. My colleague offered me her office space Denver, on Thursday mornings, when she wasn’t using it. I had always envisioned my business being in a Victorian Home – and what do you know, that’s exactly what this is! And, I don’t need to pay for the mortgage, nor the upkeep of the house, nor furnish any of the rooms. Ah, it doesn’t have to be so hard! From Thursday mornings, I expanded my business to other days of the week. I planted that “Victorian House” seed a LONG time ago – sometimes those seeds take a while to sprout, and what pops up out of the ground isn’t exactly what is expected (“What? I though I planted a cucumber! What do you mean I’m getting a sunflower?”). Oh, how beautiful! Sometimes our ideas take a long time to manifest. Sometimes our results take a long time to see. Sometimes what we thought would be, isn’t – its actually something even better. Seek the help that you need, and be open to the unexpected signs along the way. Depending on your own area of focus, you can add an eating disorder recovery coach, eating disorder clinician, eating disorder dietician, and eating disorder medical doctor to the “recovery garden” that you provide for your clients. Keep in mind that you can consult with professionals who may not live in your area (like me)!

I hope you will successfully “grow your garden” – plant your seeds with positive ideas about the work you LOVE to do, stay open to how you can best be of service in your community (notice the new seeds you can plant or the sprouts which just show up), and seek guidance from others with expertise to help grow your garden/business. You will reap a significant harvest (dare I say, money?) – but ONLY because you are seeking to GIVE your true gifts to others. That first “cherry tomato” – your first client who thrives, in freedom from ED, and the next, and the next –  YES! It’s all worth it! My best advice is – despite the challenges, persevere!


Article may be reprinted with the author bio below.

©2019 by Dr. Dorie McCubbrey. Dr. Dorie is a Certified Eating Disorder Specialist and Licensed Addiction Counselor who is passionate about training professionals to effectively guide clients in recovery from eating disorders, through her Eating Disorder Intuitive Therapy (EDIT)™ Certified program. She also provides sessions for clients who struggle with these issues, either in person or by phone. Learn more at:


Want more that this “taste” of EDIT™? Dr. Dorie is passionate about her method of Eating Disorder Intuitive Therapy (EDIT)™ to help people overcome eating disorders and addictions.  She provides customized programs for people in recovery from eating disorders and who struggle with weight issues, and  EDIT™ eating disorder training and certification for coaches and clinicians worldwide. CALL 303-494-1975 – EMAIL DR. DORIE – GET CERTIFIED

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