Do yourself a big favor and stop whining about your disease! Now that I have your attention please don’t think I’m a cold-blooded witch with no compassion, quite the opposite. If you live with a chronic illness, sometimes the best things you can do to help yourself is to refuse to indulge in whining and complaining about how awful it is.
It is true that dealing with a disease like JRA or Type 1 diabetes is a pain literally and figuratively. It’s not fair and it has a laundry list of negative aspects. However, complaining yields counterproductive results. If you give attention to the bad thoughts and feelings you give power to them. You give them an opportunity to manifest into more negative thoughts which does nothing in your favor for feeling better.
Instead, put those lousy thoughts on the backburner to fry! Take a break from the bad feelings as a chance to tell yourself how strong you are for dealing with such junk – because you are! It takes a brave soul to handle the cards that you have been dealt, so pat yourself on the back and put on a smile for a change.
You deserve to sulk every now and then, but make it few and far between by concentrating on positive thoughts. You deserve to feel happy and feel good for being strong. It might not be easy to do in the beginning, but keep at it and it will get easier. You have much to gain by thinking positive. Positive thoughts manifest and your health will benefit too.
How do you cope when negative thinking creeps into your head? Let us know! If you need a jump start here are some tips from an article titled, “Positive Thinking Can Bring Good Health”. -pm
- Look for a good role model. There is always someone who seems to be doing just what you want to be doing. Maybe they’ve scheduled exercise into their workday and switched from coffee to herbal tea. Learn from a successful friend, family member or colleague. Ask them how they keep healthy and follow in their footsteps.
- Try some positive self-talk and avoid negative-talk. Take a minute to give yourself an ego boost. Repeat some motivational words out loud or to yourself. Negative talk, “I can’t do it,” “I’m fat,” is dangerous for your well-being and healthy goals. Try to avoid the negative self-talk before it harms you. Remind yourself that you deserve happiness and can make positive changes.
- Get support. Tell your friends and family about your healthy habits. It helps to have an encouraging network.
- Reward yourself. Give yourself a pat on the back for your healthy efforts. Take a nice bath, get a massage, and enjoy a new DVD or CD.
- Have a plan. Making a plan to exercise or eat healthy lunches with a friend can mean the difference of sticking with your goals or falling off track. If you’ve planned for an activity, you’ll likely stick with it. You may even find that writing down your goals and steps to achieve them can help you stay on track. Take it day by day or week by week. The process of writing down your personal action plan is a good way to keep you honest and watch your progress or pitfalls.
Family and friends are important through our entire lives. The post Forever Friends discussed the value of having strong relationships. It make us feel good knowing that there are people in the world that care about how we feel and who try to understand the things that we might be going through in our life. Understanding is an important characteristic to have amongst good friends.
With a disease like JRA/RA life can be hard to understand. Sometimes we don’t look or feel sick at all. Then other days simple tasks feel like fighting a giant monster. It’s inconsistent at times and it feels like it fakes us out because some things that were easy one day are hard the next. It can be hard to explain to other people. That is why understanding friends are great to have. It is also very important to be understanding with your own self as well as being understanding to the fact that not everybody can relate to you and your disease. Try not to get upset that some people, even doctors, just won’t understand.
I don’t like to let on when I feel bad. That makes it difficult when I need a good, understanding friend but they don’t know about the pain, worries, or frustrations I am feeling. Try to explain to the people you trust how sometimes you just need them to be understanding or ask how you’ve been feeling. Finding understanding with the caring people around you is one of the best medicines for you! -pm
When you have JRA, PE class can be hard to like. Hopefully you are lucky and are surrounded by understanding teachers and kids. It’s also important to be understanding of yourself. Some days you might feel super strong at running and then other days you might not be able to go as fast. Try not to get discouraged. Part of having arthritis is to know that your body and joints will have good days and not-so-good days. Always do the best you can. If you are having a bad day, try to do lighter exercises. By doing some movements you will help your body stay limber, that way you will stay fit for the days that you are feeling great.
Whatever you do don’t get too discouraged. It’s ok to feel mad but don’t let mad win! Stay strong on the inside and you will be even stronger on the outside. Take care! -pm
Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis is an autoimmune disease that attacks the joints. There is not a ton of information out there about what it’s really like living with this disease. When I was about 6 years old I was given the diagnosis and now I’m an adult. I used to be very embarrassed about letting anyone know that I had JRA and would not talk about it. Now I hope by sharing what I deal with I can keep somebody else from ever feeling weird about having arthritis, any other disease, or by just being different. I call it my “Twisted Gift” because having arthritis has forced me to look at life in a way that I might not have otherwise.
Some days you will feel great and some days you won’t. But that’s normal for anyone with or without a disease. There are also thousands of worse diseases that people must live with. Sometimes when I really feel achy and frustrated, I consider the junk that other people are facing and realize that I’m not so bad off after all.
Holler at me and share your thoughts! Thanks for reading. -pm
Physical Matters…because it does. Physmat is all about things that make you healthy and happy. It is a place that will focus on health, fitness, nutrition, the environment and more. The goal is to provide you with information that will help you be the most complete you. Forever Fit!
Trina Rachelle VerSteeg Wilcox is an on air talent, writer, and columnist with a Bachelors of Science in Computer Information Systems from Missouri State University. She is a certified fitness professional through FiTour and the Arthritis Foundation. Trina is a three-time Boston Marathon finisher, former aerobics instructor, and is the director of the JRA 5K. Although Trina has battled rheumatoid arthritis from childhood into adulthood, she has used a positive focus to prevail in a variety of ways. She has many interests including nature, art, and fitness. Trina writes to encourage and teach others as well as herself.
Contact Trina at email@example.com and learn more at trinarachelle.com.
All information on physmat.com is for educational purposes only.
It is not a substitute for any advice given to you by your physician.
Consult your physician before you begin any nutrition, exercise, or other program.
Physical Matters (physmat.com) assumes no liability for information contained herein.
Physical Matters or any person(s) associated with physmat.com will be held responsible in any manner whatsoever for any injury which may occur through reading and/or following information within this site.
Physical Matters (physmat.com) will not be held responsible for the conduct of any companies and/or websites recommended within this site.
If you have any questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Did you know that there are nearly 300,000 children in America with some form of arthritis or rheumatic disease? There are 8.4 million young adults between the ages of 18-44 who have arthritis. How painful is that? There are too many diseases that deserve recognition, especially when kids are suffering. Arthritis hits home for me because of my early diagnosis with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Growing up with the disease was (and continues to be) a challenge. An active lifestyle is one of the best forms of treatment. If remaining active can improve the life of an awkward gal like me then just imagine what it can do for you!
Learn more about JRA: