I'm sure you've been in that situation where you are in such a bad mood maybe you're tired, maybe you're hung over - whatever it is! But everything just seems to irritate you more and everything just seems to just go wrong. This has to do with your mindset.
We can be sick, tired - have the worst day ever! But if our mindset is positive as opposed to negative, our day might not actually seem that bad.
Why is this?
Often times our reactions are because of our mindset. The reaction of the situation we are in will depend on if we are feeling good or bad, but feeling good or bad is actually a result of our mind (I know, weird!) It's kind of like stubbing your toe, first of all no one likes stubbing their toe but if you stub your toe and you're having the best day ever you're going to say "geez how stupid am I? lol" (after you shed a tear from almost breaking your toe). Where as if you stub your toe and you're having a terrible day you're going to probably start to cry say "why did this happen to me", "my world is ending" etc.
See the difference?
So what does this have to do with chronic disease?
Having a positive mindset can help reduce pain, increase self confidence and can reduce depression, ultimately having a positive mindset can actually help with so many side effects and symptoms of having a chronic disease.
I was misdiagnosed Crohn's for 16 years - I actually have colitis. This year I underwent a complete colectomy and now I have an Ostomy bag. I am waiting for the reconstructive surgery so maybe one day I won't have the bag but here's a case in point.
On days where I have a very negative mind I get really upset with having a bag, instead of remembering that this bag literally saved my life. Before I has surgery in the hospital the doctor said to me "If let you go home without having the surgery, there is a good chance that your bowel will perforate and you will die." (This was definitely a reality check, if I might add.)
But when I'm in a negative state of mind I don't care about this. All I care about is the fact that I have a Ostomy bag and it hurts sometimes, it's uncomfortable, it's embarrassing, it's every negative word in the book. It is not my saviour.
But on positive days I'm excited, I'm happy, and I am grateful for the fact that I have a bag that saved my life. That I am able to eat the foods that I want, that I have the capacity to do normal things, and live a "normal" life. Yes, having a bag sucks sometimes but I'm alive, I'm healthy and I'm well.
So how can we change our mindset in order to be more positive about our situation, especially when we do have these negative days?
Be grateful: being grateful has always helped bring myself up when I am frazzled with negativity, it helps me realize what I have versus what I'm getting upset about.
Good and Bad Days: remember that with a chronic disease you will always have good and bad days, whether this is pain, your symptoms of your disease, fatigue - you name it. The best thing to do is to be grateful for the good days, and just rest and give yourself time on those bad days. You're not a superhero, you are a chronic disease warrior, and so you need to give yourself the time to heal.
Talk about what you are going through: often times with chronic disease we think like we're being a burden on someone, like we're an anchor. This is so false if you feel this way get it out of your head! Whoever your partner is that is helping you through this, they want to know when you're having good and bad days. They're going to be the ones that bring you soup, or make you tea or just sit with you and watch a movie when you're experiencing pain or when you're experiencing side effects of medication. Let people in to help you.
To touch on that last one a little bit more people are on this planet to help other people, there are some people on the planet that are just not helpers but most people are here to do something for someone else, and not for something in return. With that in mind...
When was the last time you asked for help with your chronic disease?
When was the last time that you came clean and said "I feel like shit".
· People DO Care ·
Here's the scoop chronic disease sucks, it really does but it's how we make the best of our situation, it is how we change our mindset around what we are experiencing.
Because we were given this disease for some reason, we are the ones that have to experience this, for some reason (whether you want to believe this or not). We don't know what the reason is, we won't know what that is until we experience what we're experiencing. So while we are experiencing this, we need to stay as positive as we possibly can knowing that we have good and bad days, and once we're done experiencing it, we realize at the end (when we're out of that tunnel) what it was all meant to be.
I was misdiagnosed for 16 years, am I out of the woodwork? I feel like I am, but I may not be. All I know is that I want to help other people, and I am going to stay as positive as I can even when I get mad about having a bag.
Stay positive friends!