Accountability- This word keeps coming up for me. By definition, it means to be responsible to someone, or for your actions. Its opposite is unreliability. It’s what I expect of my clients and them of me. But it’s also what we expect of our bodies, and if something goes wrong, we may feel as if we have been betrayed. And of course, everyone’s biggest concern is when they will be well again. I still haven’t found a crystal ball to foretell anyone’s particular journey of recovery, but I have found a few things to speed up the process.
Respecting your Body- Pain in the body is a very strong reminder to take care of YOU. It is asking you to pay attention to yourself NOW. Truly, the faster you get on it, the quicker you will recover. Your recovery is really all about your choices and controlling your own behaviors of self-sabotage. We can choose to be our own worst enemy or our own best friend.
Attitude-“On the mend,” is what my yoga teacher reminds each of us to keep in mind as we recover from an injury. It’s the simple idea that positive thinking is a part of healing. Feelings of frustration, fear, and anxiety that accompany an injury are completely normal. You just don’t want to get stuck there! Think about the last time you were injured and how it made you feel. Most of us don’t come up with a lot of positive imagery. I recommend Louise Hays book ‘Heal Your Body’ for positive affirmations specific to each area of the body.
Deadlines-Injuries don’t care if you’ve had something on your schedule for a whole year and your partner is counting on you. You can do everything right and still not meet the deadline you have set for your well-being. Many injuries do not get better in a nice linear fashion with each day being better than the last. Instead, I would describe it more like one step forward and two steps back, or two steps forward and one step back. A little bit like climbing uphill in a scree field. It often doesn’t look or feel very much like progress.
Setbacks- This is where my client’s work becomes very important. First, all I ask is that they pay attention to the sensations their body is giving them. Just notice what is going on, and try not to put a label on it, such as ‘This is good’ or ‘This is bad’. Think instead about how it actually feels? When do you notice it? What can you do to irritate it? What can you do to calm it?
Client: Doctor, doctor- It hurts when I do this!
Doctor: Well, then don’t do that!
Own it- Yes, I know it’s an old adage, but a lot can be gained from it. Truly, it is important to choose activities that do not turn your pain on. This may take a pretty good sleuth, as often the irritating force isn’t the one you think it is. Do be aware that pain following an activity can pretty well be ruled ‘the culprit.’ It is your own journey to understand your injury so that you can take the steps to make it better.
Journey- One day at a time is the only way to handle an injury. Simply choose to release what you cannot control so you can focus on the things you can control. In the end, we all must recognize that we are accountable for our own healing. Try to make more good choices than bad, as it is within our own power to be good to ourselves and to get well.
Try taking the reigns and begin assigning a kinder meaning to the events in your life and you will likely find yourself on a much more pleasant ride. ~ Madisyn Taylor