It’s not always easy to find strength in the bad days. You already feel overwhelmed and are struggling to just get through. This idea of staying strong is a bit over-rated sometimes, and sometimes the best thing we can do is allow ourselves to just rest. Let someone else be strong.
The more I have going on in my life, the easier it is to let pacing fall by the wayside. When I forget to pace, I tend to have more bad days – whether it be days of low energy, or days with more pain. Either way, it often means I get less done. On those days I try to remember to focus on four things.
1. Focus on what I can do today – I’m not going to get through everything on my ToDo list today. Things that require a lot of mental focus just seem to activate the brain fog. But, there are things I can do even when brain fog takes over. I can do more simple, repetitive tasks. Or, better yet, I can rest and know that tomorrow I will have more energy because I chose to rest today.
2. Focus on the Battles I CAN Win – Early on in the days of Fibro I would fight through the bad days. I would overdo it and push myself to do what I really couldn’t. I’d usually end up crashing out and having full flares that lasted a week instead of minor flares that lasted a day. I’ve learned that it’s not worth fighting the flares. If I just give in at whatever level I need to, I will feel better the next day and be able to accomplish all the things (even the things I wasn’t able to do today).
3. Focus on the Silver Linings – Sometimes it’s hard to stay positive. But, it’s what I need to do. But, happiness is a choice. I walk outside and I watch nature, and notice the (literal) small things. I choose to focus on positive things, on what I CAN do instead of what I can’t do. I choose to focus on the silver lining instead of the storm cloud, because there’s always a silver lining.
4. Focus on Healthy Habits – Even when I’m not feeling well I know it’s important for me to still stick to my healthy habits. Some days I feel so bad there’s energy to even move. But, if I can I do. Even if it’s just a 5 minute walk. It’s something. If I don’t feel like cooking I still try to eat healthy, opting for fruits or a salad. Sticking to healthy habits makes it easier for me to remember that tomorrow will be better that I’m still doing the right things.
We move in the direction of our focus, and even the smallest step can make a huge difference. If I let my focus stray away from what’s important then that is where I will go. I don’t want to happen so it’s important that I keep my focus where it should be.