I wrote this post which first appeared on MyFibroTeam.com and is reposted to WordsByMara.com with permission. Although this post was intended for the Fibromyalgia audience, my hope is that everyone will be able to relate. Here is my experience in changing perspectives from a realm of comfort, to that of positivity and joy! Everything starts with your brain and attitude.
Hear me out…
Life is often unpredictable with fibromyalgia. Some days can really be frustrating. We struggle to stay awake during the day, fight off the pain all day long, and cannot find rest very easily at night.
Our bodies live in a perpetual state of discomfort – all the while we are doing everything possible to make ourselves COMFORTABLE.
So, it’s time to get uncomfortable.
Sometimes it requires getting uncomfortable with our current routine in order to pursue a more comfortable life going forward.
I have found myself stuck in an unhealthy mindset several times since my diagnosis of Fibromyalgia and other chronic illnesses. It becomes easy to take a pill, not exercise, and live in negative state of mind. I remember thinking, “What is the point in trying?”
Several months ago, I hit my “rock bottom” with chronic illness. There is no other way to put it. I had only 2 options at that point – which was to continue in a downward spiral of depression and pity. OR get healthy, exercise and live in the positive light.
I chose to pull myself out of that dark hole and live. I chose to live for myself, my husband, my son and my family.
There is only blackness in that dark hole. I buried myself under an unhealthy amount of comfort and negative thoughts. And I wasn’t happy there. If you can relate – I have some tips for you!
As I began to ascend into the light, I sought help wherever possible. I saw a chronic pain counselor that taught me how to “retrain my brain” and I also went off unnecessary medications. My doctor also recommended that I start physical therapy and retrain core muscles to build a stronger body.
My life changed and I am grateful.
As I learned to retrain my brain, my outlook on life as a chronic pain sufferer also changed. It is a documented fact that as we shift our focus from pain to something positive, we can stop catastrophizing our levels of pain and begin to heal.
Remember when I said that your fibromyalgia pain comes from the brain? Well it does. But so do the negative thoughts that feed and add to your pain. And I can say this, because I have been there.
My chronic pain counselor taught me how to shift my focus off the pain and dedicate some time for myself. I am a new mom, so I understand that it can be difficult to find time for yourself. But if you want to come out of that dark hole… you NEED to try!
Here are some ways to shift your negative thoughts to positive thoughts…
Negative – “My neck still hurts today, I will never feel better!”
Positive – “My neck has less pain than yesterday and a lot more movement.”
Do you see the difference? Honestly, just a small shift in your thought process can have such a HUGE impact on your daily life.
Negative – “I always get headaches when I’m at work.”
Positive – “My headaches have really improved since dimming the lights.”
Negative – “No one understands my pain and I am all alone.”
Positive – “This pain is difficult, but I am not alone in my suffering.”
Remember, this takes work and things do not change immediately overnight.
Try implementing these small changes into your life. I encourage you to make small improvements and to break away from the comfort. You will be amazed how enjoyable life can be when you’re standing in the light.
Hang in there and remember… no one should ever suffer in silence! Be well.
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