There is no right way to live with a chronic illness and everyone will tackle each day differently. However, one important thing everyone should do is try to stay positive. Admittedly, in your situation, this may be difficult but with some simple guidance, you can brighten up each day just a little bit and make things better.
Ask for Help
Asking for help is hard, especially when you are a strong minded person and you feel like a failure for having to ask. You aren’t a failure. In fact, knowing and asking for help is a smart and strong thing to do.Your family will understand and will want to help you however they can.
You can also get help with Medicare covered home health care. This will make your care more accessible, especially if you struggle to move about and get to health professionals by yourself. Your healthcare shouldn’t feel like a burden, so take steps to make it as easy for you as possible.
It might also be an idea to get other forms of home help such as a weekly cleaner. They will be able to keep on top of the day-to-day stuff that is hard to reach and keep your home looking and feeling good. A cleaner will also free up your family so that you can spend more time together.
Remember to feel Grateful
When you are in pain or you are struggling with your health, it often feels like there is nothing to be grateful for. This is completely normal but you will be glad to hear that it is within your control. Part of being grateful is noticing those times and remembering them so if you make a bit more of an effort to do just that, your mood should lift.
Try keeping a gratitude journal. All you need to do is list the things you feel grateful for and take the time to think about them. This will help you to recognise the good things that are happening to you and around you. However small the things is, however daft or trivial, make a note of it. The more detail you use the better, so try to go for a few things in depth rather than lots of generic things. Whatever it is, take the time to feel grateful for it.
You might also like to experiment with how often you make your journal entries. For some people every day is perfect, for others this is overdoing it and once or twice a week is better. As you build up your journal, do flick back through the pages to remind yourself what you have felt grateful for and take the time to remember each event. Life might just feel a little bit lighter.
Like many therapies, this method won’t necessarily work for everyone, but there is research that suggests that those who want to be happier and will make a real effort to do so will benefit from this method. If you find it doesn’t work for you, don’t worry, ask you doctor about other methods that might help to relieve stress and help bring your mood up.
Focus on the Good Days
With any chronic illness or fatigue, you will have some good days and some bad days. As you fluctuate up and down, you might find yourself feeling hopelessly trapped and fearing that good days will stop coming.
A simple mantra might help you to refocus your mind: I will overcome this bad day.
Instead of obsessing over the bad days, try to think more about the good days that are to come. This is easier when you have things planned ahead to look forward to. You have overcome bad days before so this time will be no different. Look after yourself and get plenty of rest and things will gradually get better again.
Do the Things You Enjoy
It might be easy to sit in front of the TV all day but if this doesn’t make you happy, you need to find a wider variety of things you can do. Reading, painting and puzzles will keep your mind active and boost your creativity but there are all sorts of things you could try. Even on a bad day, things like listening to a favourite playlist will help to keep away the negativity.
With a chronic illness, positivity will take some work but fortunately every small thing you do will help. With a bit of help and a shift in focus, you can live a happy and fulfilling life with your illness. Don’t push yourself unduly, just do what you can each day and remember to feel grateful for all those small joys you find.