14 September 2009

Being Positive During Times of Pain

National Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness Week, September 14 – 20, 2009, is a worldwide effort to bring together people who live with invisible chronic illness and those who love them. Nearly 1 in 2 people in the USA live with a chronic illness and about 96% of these illnesses are invisible.

It is a challenge to stay positive, peaceful and out of the fear when living with a chronic illness. Constant pain can keep you in a very negative and lonely space. Several of the ways I deal with my illness is with meditation, prayer and support. One of my support systems is Rest Ministries and the HopeKeepers Sunroom Community.

Founded by Lisa Copen in 1996, Rest Ministries is a Christian organization that exists to serve people who live with chronic illness or pain, and their families, by providing spiritual, emotional, relational, and practical support through a variety of programs and resources.

A few tips to stay positive:

Set clear boundaries with those around you. Let your NO mean NO and your YES mean YES. Remember, you teach people how to treat you. People will learn to take you seriously when you get serious.

Take a time out when needed. Ladies, I always say the easiest thing to do is to excuse yourself and head to the ladies room. It’s the best and safest time out there is.

Find support for the journey; find a nutritious person to be a sounding board or simply a shoulder to lean on. There is nothing weak in needing and asking for help; especially in times of pain and discomfort. Reach out and call someone.

Rest Ministries organizes a 5-day free virtual conference with 20 seminars that can be attended online from your computer. Seminars are on a variety of topics including marriage, parenting, starting a business, how to apply for disability and more—all when you live with a chronic illness. Kick off is the morning of Monday the 14th at 9 a.m. Pacific Time. Go to Blog Talk Radio and turn up your speakers!

May the Lord give you peace,
Coach Carolyn

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