How do you cope with the psychological impact of your chronic illness(es)? How do you stay motivated to treat your body when you know it’s not going to “fix” anything?
Chronic Generalized pain
I struggle with this a lot, why exercise if my heart will never struggle with it less? Why try to cover up the tinnitus if the noise never actually stops? I guess my motivation is that I need to stay healthy for the eventual day that I get surgery. I have myself convinced that if i’m in better shape, I will recover faster, which might honestly be true.
When I found a therapist knowledgeable about chronic illness/disability, that was huge for me. But I know that’s a privilege not everyone has access to. Meeting other chronically ill and disabled people has also been really helpful for me. But it definitely still takes a toll mentally. It’s so hard what we go through everyday. Be kind and gentle towards yourself when possible 💕 As far as staying motivated, my treatments won’t “cure” anything, but they definitely help me manage symptoms, so that’s a big motivator. For some things, I give myself little rewards or breaks. I had to learn awhile ago that I’m the caretaker for this body. For some reason, thinking of it as another entity helps me take care of it - like it’s a pet or a garden or something. Idk why haha. Good luck. I know how hard this is 🤗
What has helped me is to reframe my thinking from wanting a cure to just managing the illness well. I deal with chronic pain and I no longer hold onto the idea of the pain being gone. I now look at my chronic condition in terms of what makes it better or worse, then focus on doing the things that make it better. I no longer expect pain to go away, rather I look for the way the symptoms change. With chronic conditions it may feel permanent and so it helps to look at the slight ways it changes. There are times my pain is less and other times it is much worse. I focus on the ebbs and flows of the pain and watch it change. Reframing my mindset in this way has saved my life.
The way I’ve tried to think of it is, I don’t want to do anything that would cause a flare-up, because I know what that feels like. So I make it so it’s literally easier to do the good thing for me than it is to engage in something that wouldn’t be very good for my body.
It’s honestly really hard, but I prep by having same foods in the house, and I tell my partner what helps me in case I forget. I keep things close, and in the same area as often as I can so I will see them and use them. And I try to be kind to myself when I forget to—or choose not to—do the things that help. We’re only human, and we may not be able to do the right thing all the time, but every time we do we can celebrate it.
☝ This content is generated by our users and it is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision
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