Why Pacing Beats Push-and-Crash (and How to Best Manage Your Energy) | The Health Sessions

Why Pacing Beats Push-and-Crash Cycles (And How You Can Best Manage Your Energy)

If you’ve been living with a chronic illness for a while, you’ve probably heard of the Spoon Theory by Christine Miserandino. For someone who’s seriously sick, each day starts with a limited amount of “spoons” of energy. They carefully have to decided how you can best spend each one, knowing that even mondain tasks like taking a shower or making lunch costs you precious spoons.

The Spoon Theory is a helpful analogy of what it’s truly like to live with chronic illness or disability. But how does it work in reality? How do you decide how to spend your spoons? What do you do when you have no spoons left but still half a day ahead of you?

In my experience, there are two broad strategies: pacing and push-and-crash. 

I used to be the queen of push-and-crash cycles. At the time, it really was the only way to get things done: resting up and preparing before an event – going to school, necessary shopping trips, hanging out with family and friends – putting every last drop of effort into getting to and through the event and then… crash. Hard. It meant my symptoms would exacerbate and I couldn’t do much else but rest the next day(s) to recover from that activity.

Read more >Why Pacing Beats Push-and-Crash Cycles (And How You Can Best Manage Your Energy)



7 Best Tips To Use Massage Therapy As A Source Of Injury Prevention | The Health Sessions

7 Best Tips to Use Massage Therapy as a Source of Injury Prevention

This is a guest post by Stacey Connor from Foot Massager Advisor

Massage therapy has long been seen as an effective means to assist people who were suffering from some kind of injury, no matter what kind of injury they have. Even those who have had broken bones find that massage therapy can be beneficial in assisting them so that they can have stronger more durable muscles that are able to assist in the strengthening of the bone.

It is clear that massage therapy can have tremendous benefits for those who have already suffered an injury. But you may be unaware of the fact that it can be as equally helpful in preventing injuries from occurring at all. In fact, even if you are a fitness geek, you may find that by visiting a massage therapist on a regular basis you may prevent injuries from ever having a chance to occur.

Here are seven tips you should know about using massage therapy as a source of injury prevention.

Read more >7 Best Tips to Use Massage Therapy as a Source of Injury Prevention



How You Can Still Pursue Your Goals and Dreams When You're Chronically Ill | The Health Sessions

How You Can Still Pursue Your Goals and Dreams When You’re Chronically Ill

“A dream is a wish your heart makes.” – Walt Disney

Remember when you were young, you’d fantasize about all the things you would do when you were grown up: becoming a doctor or a rockstar, traveling the world, getting married and having kids.

Some of those dreams may be shattered when you get diagnosed with chronic illness.

Suddenly, the life you’d envisioned for yourself is gone. Sometimes there’s little chance of your dreams ever becoming reality. I mean, how can you finish your studies, work a demanding job or raise a family when just getting through the day is a huge challenge?

It’s a heartbreaking feeling to have your deepest desires go unmet. When there’s a gap between what you’d do if only your body would cooperate and what you can actually do, you may experience an inner conflict between accepting your new reality and still trying to shoot for the moon.

Because even the sickest of us still have goals and dreams we wish to fulfill. Living means more than simply surviving. According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, when our basic needs like food, shelter and safety are met, we all long to belong and be loved, to cultivate self-esteem and self-respect, and finally to reach self-actualisation. We want to give meaning to our lives, even in the most harrowing circumstances.

But when you’re chronically ill and struggle to do the simplest things, pursuing your dreams and achieving your goals is not as easy as “you can do anything as long as you want it badly enough“. Of course determination, hard work and commitment are key, and there are plenty of stories out there of people accomplishing greatness despite their limitations. But sometimes all the persistence in the world just isn’t enough – at least not right now.

Despite my reservations about some motivational slogans, I’m a fierce believer in hope and going after your dreams. Whether you want to finish your studies, find a loving partner or pursue your passions, here are some realistic ideas to help you set and reach new goals when you have a chronic illness.

Read more >How You Can Still Pursue Your Goals and Dreams When You’re Chronically Ill



Spoonie Gift Guide: The 36 Most Comforting Presents for Your Chronically Ill Friend | The Health Sessions

Spoonie Gift Guide: The 36 Most Comforting Presents for Your Chronically Ill Friend

Would you like to pamper your sick friend but don’t know what gift you should get them?

Finding the perfect present for the people you love can be a challenge in itself, but chronic illness can make the search even more complicated. What do you buy someone who can’t do a lot of things or suffers from sensitivities?

It depends of course on your friend’s illness, situation and interests. But many spoonies love to receive something soothing and indulgent, whether that’s a wellness gift, practical items to deal with the daily discomfort or entertaining goodies to beat the boredom.

For inspiration, have a look at these 36 comforting spoonie gift ideas for any budget. 

Read more >Spoonie Gift Guide: The 36 Most Comforting Presents for Your Chronically Ill Friend



Tripping Through Treacle: Jenny Clarkson on Living with MS | The Health Sessions

Tripping Through Treacle: Jenny Clarkson on Living with MS

What’s it really like to live with chronic illness every day? How do you deal with the physical symptoms, emotional turmoil and practical problems? In this interview series, real life ‘spoonies’ share their experiences and tips.

Jenny Clarkson is a 30-something speech and language therapist from Lincolnshire, England. On her blog Tripping Through Treacle, she shares her story about stumbling through life with Multiple Sclerosis (MS).  

 

Tell us a little about yourself.

I’m Jenny, a 39-year old mother of two who loves reading, music, films, food and crochet. I live with my husband and kids in Lincolnshire, UK and work 3 days a week as a paediatric speech and language therapist. I also have Secondary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis (SPMS). MS is a chronic disease of the nervous system, where nerves become damaged and unable to transmit messages successfully. Unfortunately, there is no cure and I have my down days, but on the whole I try and stay positive and am so grateful for all that I do have. I blog about living with MS at www.trippingthroughtreacle.com.

Read more >Tripping Through Treacle: Jenny Clarkson on Living with MS