I feel like I am constantly doing the “fibromyalgia cha-cha.” Every time I take two steps forward, I end up taking four steps back. Having a chronic illness is like being a human yo-yo. Life seems to send you in 100 different directions, and just when you feel good, something comes along to set the world spinning again.
How we handle setbacks makes a huge difference to our overall health. Our response to the stumbling blocks along the way will shape how well we recover. Having a bad attitude only makes our lives miserable. Negativity only breeds more negativity.
Now, granted, we all have good reasons to be bitter and angry at times, but living our lives with that mindset will only bring us more of the same. We deal with so many different obstacles, it is hard to have a good attitude, but if we wish to feel better, we need to change our attitudes.
There isn’t a lot we can control. I spent most of my adult life feeling totally out of control. I didn’t know what was happening to my body. I was just trying to survive, and I wasn’t doing a very good job. I was suffering greatly and had built up a lot of anger and bitterness.
I learned the hard way that the old adage is true: “Life is what you make of it.” I may not be able to control most of what happens in life, but I control how I respond to setbacks. I can choose to be negative or positive. I’ve spent too much time on Negativity Drive. Now I’m cruising down Positively Lane and feeling a lot better, both physically and mentally.
Changing how I respond to difficulties and setbacks has made a big difference. Feeling sorry for myself didn’t make me feel better. My health continued to suffer and my quality of life was poor. By just changing my attitude, I am now doing much better overall.
Count your blessings. Can you still work? Do you have wonderful children or grandchildren who make your heart sing? Being thankful not only makes you feel good emotionally but also plays a huge roll in your physical condition. When you have a positive attitude, dealing with pain and other physical ailments is easier. You may be more willing to try gentle movements or go for a walk on a beautiful day.
As I took stock in my life, I realized that I still had a lot to be thankful for. I have a wonderful husband who has been my rock for 24 years. I have three cats who love me unconditionally and are always available when I need a hug. My job, even though it can be challenging, gives me a sense of self-worth, besides providing me with a good income. My boss is amazing and takes wonderful care of me. If I didn’t have fibromyalgia, I really wouldn’t have much to complain about at all.
What also made a difference was realizing that others, even though they do not show it, have issues that may be more serious than my own. Unless you walk in their shoes, you do not know the struggles they may have to endure. Remembering that you are not the only one who is suffering may help you deal with your own issues and help you keep everything in perspective.
Since my attitude adjustment, I’ve tried different treatments for fibromyalgia that I wouldn’t even consider before. Having an open mind and remaining positive has brought me a sense of peace I haven’t experienced before and has also reduced my pain and suffering. I’ve lost 30 lbs in three months by cutting out sugar and simple carbs. I couldn’t have made that change in my old state of mind.
Sometimes the simplest adjustment can make a huge difference. Try seeing things in a different light. You may be surprised at the results!
Note: Fibromyalgia News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Fibromyalgia News Today or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to fibromyalgia.