How The Spoon Theory Explains What It's Like to Live with Chronic Illness | The Health Sessions

How The Spoon Theory Explains What It’s Like to Live with Chronic Illness

You’ve probably read the term before: spoonies. It’s a nickname for people with chronic illness, that unites individuals with all kinds of health problems on social media.

Because spoonies all share a common struggle: how do you get things done with the small amount of energy that you have? How can you take care of work, home life or even your basic needs when you’re always exhausted, in pain and have limited mobility?

Having to pace yourself is a concept that’s hard to understand for healthy people. Because getting dressed, making meals and doing the dishes is something most people do without even thinking about it. But when you’re chronically ill, those daily tasks can take up much – if not all – of your energy.

One day, lupus patient Christine Miserandino found a striking way to explain to her friend how difficult it is for her to get through the day, by using the items in front of her: spoons. Her Spoon Theory became a widely used metaphor to describe what it’s really like to live with chronic illness.

Have a look at this in-depth infographic from Burning Nights on what the Spoon Theory is and how you can use your daily spoons wisely.

Read more >How The Spoon Theory Explains What It’s Like to Live with Chronic Illness



The Ultimate Guide to Getting Things Done with Chronic Illness | The Health Sessions

The Ultimate Guide to Getting Things Done with Chronic Illness

“You never know how strong you are until being strong is your only choice.” – Bob Marley

I had big dreams for 2018. After focusing mostly on my family last year, now was the time to grow this website, write another book and work on some important personal goals. Life, however, had other plans.

The cold and flu season has hit our home hard this winter. It’s never fun having to take care of sick kids and spouses, especially not for weeks on end. But add a history of chronic illness, serious sleep deprivation and other important responsibilities to the mix, and you have the recipe for a body crash in the making.

These past two months reminded me again how much I (have to) rely on energy-conserving strategies to get things done no matter how good or bad I feel. After all, there are only so much tasks you can drop, delegate or defer.

I’ve written a lot over the years about ‘hacks’ that make life with chronic illness a little easier, from planning and pacing to ‘minimalism with a backup plan’, stress-free meal planning and sheet pan dinners.

But today I’d love to hear from you.

What is your best energy-saving life hack for getting things done with chronic illness? Which tricks do you use to do your job, run a household, raise a family, have a social life and/or pursue your passions despite of the pain, fatigue and symptoms you’re experiencing?

Help me make an ultimate guide of how to get things done with chronic illness by adding your tip(s) to the list!

Read more >The Ultimate Guide to Getting Things Done with Chronic Illness



Beyond Bubble Baths: What Self-Care Means When You're Chronically Ill | The Health Sessions

Beyond Bubble Baths: What Self-Care Means When You’re Chronically Ill

It’s the buzz word of the year: self-care.

You’ve probably seen the articles about why self-care isn’t selfish and the lists of activities you can do to look after yourself. The stories invoke images of massages and spa days, sipping vibrant veggie juices in trendy yoga outfits and snugging up with a blanket and a book in front of the fireplace.

But when you’re energy and mobility are limited, self-care becomes a lot less glamorous than the picture painted in magazines and lifestyle blogs. Chronic illness can turn even the most basic forms of self-care, like taking a shower and cooking a meal, into a challenge.

At the same time, our health care systems put a growing emphasis on individuals taking control over their own health and actively managing their illness. We’re expected to eat healthily, exercise, get enough sleep and think positively, or seek professional help whenever we can’t.

Of course that’s a good thing. It’s your body and your life, and ultimately you’re the one who has to take action to make the most of whatever situation you’re given. But how can you do that when you feel sick, exhausted and in pain?

Let’s look into what it really means to practice self-care with chronic illness. 

Read more >Beyond Bubble Baths: What Self-Care Means When You’re Chronically Ill



Why You Should Get Your Daily Nature Fix ( Even When You're Housebound) | The Health Sessions

Why You Should Get Your Daily Nature Fix (Even When You’re Housebound)

There’s no WiFi in the forrest, but you will find a better connection. 

We spend most of our waking hours indoors, working, driving and staring at screens. When you become chronically ill and don’t have enough energy or mobility to go outside, you can get even more alienated from nature.

Science backs our intuitive feeling that being outdoors has many important benefits for our health and happiness. Japanese medicine even studies the healing effects of immersing yourself into the woods, a practice called ‘forest bathing.’ So what makes being in green surroundings so healthy?

Read more >Why You Should Get Your Daily Nature Fix (Even When You’re Housebound)