9 Tips for Writing a Daily Plan for People with Chronic Diseases

  • By Kristen Bray
  • 1 May 2023
  • 6 minute read
9 Tips for Writing a Daily Plan with a Chronic Disease | The Health Sessions

This article is written by Kristin Bray.

It is often difficult to plan for the day ahead when you have a chronic illness. There are numerous challenges associated with having a chronic disease, ranging from managing physical pain and fatigue to taking medication and adjusting your daily routine. Writing a daily plan is a great way to simplify your routine while still maintaining your health. It will help relieve some of your stress and provide you with a framework within which to live each day.

We have advice on how to create the ideal plan for people living with chronic illnesses. Learn how to create a daily plan and manage your health issues properly.

Why is it important to have a daily plan when you’re chronically ill?

According to statistics, nowadays, one in three adults across the world suffers from different chronic illnesses. In the United States, nearly 133 million people (or roughly 40% of the total population) claim to have at least one chronic disease. The most common of them include:

  • Arthritis;
  • Cancer;
  • Diabetes;
  • Heart disease;
  • Hypertension;
  • Mental disorders;
  • Pulmonary conditions;
  • Stroke

When you’re chronically ill, writing a daily plan can help you better manage your energy levels throughout the day. Also, by scheduling enough rest before and after activities, you may prevent post-exertional malaise and worsening of your symptoms. What’s more, making daily plans lets you identify your most energetic, pain-free moments of the day, so you can use those moments for your most important or demanding tasks.

9 Tips for Writing a Daily Plan with a Chronic Disease | The Health Sessions
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How Do You Plan a Day with Chronic Illness?

Although chronic disease cause significant discomfort, these health issues and the severity of their impact on your body can be alleviated if done correctly. Here are some tips for you to consider:

1. Understand your chronic disease.

Before making a daily plan for yourself, you should first understand the nature of your chronic disease and how it affects your life. Spend some time researching and asking questions about your diagnosis to gain a better understanding of how you should best manage your health. For example:

  • What types of symptoms do you experience?
  • What medications are prescribed, and what are the side effects?
  • Are there particular activities that may worsen or improve your condition?
  • How can you best manage stress and fatigue with your diagnosis?

2. Prioritize tasks and activities based on urgency, importance and energy levels.

Here is how you can do it:

  • Determine which tasks or activities, such as doctor visits and medication administration, are the most important;
  • Make a list of things you want to do but are not necessarily urgent, such as hobbies or reading a book;
  • Create an achievable schedule based on your energy levels;
  • Schedule rest periods throughout the day to avoid overworking and exhausting your body;
  • Take regular breaks and exercise to give your body a break from the physical strain of living with a chronic illness.

3. Break down larger tasks into smaller, manageable steps.

If you are feeling overwhelmed and unsure how to organize your day, try breaking down larger tasks into smaller, more manageable steps. It will help you focus on the task at hand rather than other aspects of your day and decrease your stress level. For example:

  • Instead of planning an entire grocery trip, start by making a list of the items you need;
  • Rather than planning a visit to the doctor, begin by making an appointment and gathering all your pertinent medical information;
  • Instead of writing dozens of tasks in one day, consider splitting them into portions appropriate for your daily energy level or delegating a portion of them to writing services experts;
  • Rather than tackling an entire week’s worth of laundry, start by sorting it into smaller loads that can be completed quickly.
9 Tips for Writing a Daily Plan with a Chronic Disease | The Health Sessions
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4. Create effective coping mechanisms.

Living with a chronic illness can be overwhelming. As a result, finding healthy coping mechanisms that work for your medical condition should become a crucial part of your routine. They may include:

  • Mindfulness meditation;
  • Journaling;
  • Exercise (consider only those exercises appropriate for your medical condition. If you are unsure about which exercises are suitable for you, consult a specialist);
  • Join support groups or visit individual sessions to learn how people with your condition overcome the issue;
  • Spend time with friends and family, etc.

These activities can help you relax and de-stress, which may help you manage the effects of your chronic disease better.

5. Use technology to manage your schedule and reminders.

Numerous apps and websites can help you create an organized plan, track your progress, and set reminders for taking medication or attending doctor’s appointments. Moreover, in some cases, you can visit even virtual consultations right when you need them. Here are some tools that may come in handy for you:

  • MyFitnessPal;
  • CareZone;
  • Pill Reminder Pro;
  • Teladoc;
  • DoctorOnDemand.

6. Incorporate physical activity into the plan.

Including physical activity in your daily routine can help you manage the symptoms of your chronic disease. Here are some exercises that are suitable for the most common chronic diseases:

  • Arthritis: Low-impact aerobics, swimming, and walking;
  • Asthma: Walking, biking, and yoga;
  • Diabetes: Brisk walking, jogging, cycling, tai chi, and strength training;
  • Heart Disease: Brisk walking, jogging, cycling, and Pilates;
  • Hypertension: Brisk walking, cycling, tai chi, and yoga;
  • Mental disorders: Meditation, yoga, and aerobic exercise;
  • Pulmonary conditions: Walking, biking, and swimming;
  • Stroke: Range of motion exercises, walking, and tai chi.
9 Tips for Writing a Daily Plan with a Chronic Disease | The Health Sessions
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7. Set realistic goals for the day and be flexible.

When dealing with a chronic illness, you should have a flexible plan. It means you are prepared for the unexpected and can adjust your daily routine as needed. It may include things like:

  • Unexpected events, such as doctor’s appointments;
  • Extreme fatigue, etc.

Be flexible with yourself, and do not feel guilty if you need to take a break or miss a task. Remember that living with a chronic illness can be difficult, so prioritize your physical and mental health above all else.

8. Reach out to support groups or healthcare professionals for additional guidance.

Support groups are a great way to connect with other people who are dealing with similar chronic illnesses and can provide valuable insight into how to best manage your condition. Healthcare professionals can also advise you on how to develop an appropriate plan and lifestyle that meet your specific needs. Having a support system in place can make managing a chronic illness easier and more manageable.

9. Celebrate small accomplishments and progress towards larger goals

Living with a chronic illness can be discouraging. As a result, you should focus on celebrating small victories and making progress toward larger goals. Your daily plan should include rewards or incentives to help motivate you.

Take time each day to acknowledge and celebrate your accomplishments, no matter how small they may be. It will keep you motivated and on track with managing your condition.

9 Tips for Writing a Daily Plan with a Chronic Disease | The Health Sessions
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Conclusion

Making a daily plan is a crucial step in managing chronic illness and building resilience because it allows you to structure your day, set meaningful goals, and make reasonable compromises. Although it can be intimidating, it is also rewarding to see tangible results from your careful planning.

You should remember that your plan should always be adapted based on your needs, energy levels, and feelings on any given day, as life with a chronic illness can be unpredictable. Working toward manageable goals and tasks over time will help you relieve some of the burdens of managing chronic illnesses and create space in your lives for peace and joy.

Author bio: Kristen Bray is a professional writer and blogger. She mainly covers topics such as blogging, digital marketing, and self-education. In her free time, she practices yoga and also travels.

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