She talks about…
Turning bad days into a success
I’m struggling today. Really struggling. My body aches and I’m beyond exhausted. Standing up and moving seems overwhelming. I haven’t gotten up in a few hours, telling myself this is self-care. And on some level it is.
However, more so than self-care, this is more self-protection. I’m allowing my negative thoughts to protect me from failure, from life, from putting myself in a position to hurt, to become overwhelmed, to perhaps even feel worse.
I’ve cocooned myself in the safest, coziest place
– my bed. I’m protected all right. Protected from taking responsibility for my chronic condition. Protected from getting up and doing those things that will make me feel marginally better, and more connected to others.
I could be calling or texting friends. Could be going for a walk, doing yoga or stretching my poor tight limbs. I could be eating healthier foods, drinking lots of water, or comforting myself with unsweetened herbal tea. All of these things would ease the pain and isolation of having a chronic illness. All of these would help. And all of these require acceptance of my symptoms.
On my good days, these are all easy to do. I tell myself this in a very critical way. They’re no-brainers on the good days. But this is not a good day. This is a hard day. This is a day where my mind likes to tell me my body has betrayed me, that I will never feel good again, and that I’m doomed to a debilitating future. With thoughts like this, no wonder I’m staying in bed, doing little to improve my condition.
No wonder it’s so hard for me to get up and help myself.
With this mindset, staying in bed makes the most sense. However, this “self-protective” mindset is not realistic. I know I will be feeling better, and that it will happen faster if I get myself out of bed.
I know with some self-compassion I can let myself off the hook emotionally, making it easier to be willing to take risks. And I know one other thing, something that makes the biggest difference in getting me up and trying. On good days self-care is good. It helps practice for on harder days and it boosts my already good energy and health.On bad days, self-care is important & powerful. These are the times it's most valuable... Click To Tweet
On the bad days, however, self-care is important and POWERFUL. These are the times it is most valuable, the times it means the most. The smallest act on the hardest day means more than anything I can do on my good days.
My mind might disagree right now, and my outlook may be pessimistic. But it doesn’t make the statement any less true. Acts of self-care today make more of a difference for my wellbeing.
As long as I’m trying, as long as I make some small effort, I can still be a success.
So with that in mind, I move my aching limbs, stand on shaky legs and start to slowly stretch. If I can keep going and do some yoga – BONUS!
If not, I’ve gotten out of bed, I’ve stretched a bit. No matter what I manage to accomplish, this is a bad day. And on bad days, even the smallest effort is a success.