Guess what! One day I decided to be happy, focus on the positives and never take anything for granted. Since then, it’s been SO easy to maintain that focus and I’ve never had a doubt or fear or worry creep into my mind. It was something I had to work to attain, and now that I have it, I don’t have to worry about working on it anymore.
You probably read that and thought . . . what the hell is she smoking?
WOULDN’T IT BE NICE IF LIFE WAS LIKE THAT?!
But that’s soooooooooooo not reality. The reality is more like this.
One day I decided I wanted to be truly happy with where I was, to set my sights on focusing on the positives as much as I could and to maintain a grateful heart. To have patience and understanding with myself for the times when I’d slip up and to understand that every day is a NEW day. Since every day is a new day, I must work on remaining happy, positive and grateful EVERY SINGLE DAY. It’s a never-ending cycle. BUT, if up kept, is truly a rewarding one at that.
It’s extremely easy to be joyful and optimistic when things are great, life is good and your pain is low. But, when the going gets tough, doubts, fears and anxiety creep back into our mind.
The key to maintaining our happiness is to realize this is going to happen.
To remember we’re human and we will be faced with these thoughts and fears and anxieties. Every single person on this planet is faced with them – regardless of situation, health or wealth!
So what do we do about it then?
Do we get overwhelmed with the task of having to put ourself first always?
Do we start to worry constantly about the possibility of fear, negativity and doubt overcoming our mind?
Do we just give in, because let’s be honest, who wants to work on being happy 24/7/365?
NO! NO! NO! NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!
We accept that it’s a journey, we approach ourself with compassion and we try our best.
That’s all we can do – TRY OUR BEST.
When we add mindfulness exercises and meditation into our daily routines, we start to become more self-aware. We start to realize when the negativity train is pulling in and we start to realize how we can get that train boarded and on its way out of the station again. That’s why practicing mindfulness is SO SO SO important. It’s important for everybody, but it’s especially important for those with chronic illness.
Well, when we’re in pain. When we’re miserable. When we don’t feel well, wish things were different and hate life . . . we can spend a lot of time ‘out’ of our bodies.
What do I mean by that?
We start to disconnect from the pain. We disconnect from the emotions we’re feeling. We try to disconnect with what is making us feel like SHIT. This is a coping mechanism used by so many of us, BUT this hurts us because we then aren’t really addressing what’s going on.
It can be scary for people to add meditation or mindfulness exercises to their day, because it brings them back in their bodies – meditation brings us back into ourself. . . something that we so desperately try to escape from. The reason that it’s helpful to connect with ourselves, our true inner SELF, is because when the going gets tough our inner self always approaches things with love, compassion and understanding. It’s our ego, our learned perception of how we should be, and our environment that has taught us that love, compassion and understanding aren’t always the ways to go.
Therefore, in order to help us remain positive, in order to help us get through tough times, and in order for us to stay grateful, we must commit to adding mindfulness and meditation to our every day lives. By practicing everyday, even when everything is perfect and life couldn’t get any more wonderful, we will then be equipped to deal with the bad times.
Before, I used to be in constant 24/7/365 pain. My knee felt like it was on fire all the time – it. was. awful. It would drain my energy, it affected every aspect of my life and I thought it would never end. I used to pray and pray and pray saying that I’d never take another no-pain day for granted again.
But guess what?
After my stem cell procedure, after getting off of crutches and all my pain meds and after no-pain days because a regular occurrence, I started taking those days for granted. Not because I’m a cocky b*tch and think I deserve no-pain days, but because life happens and we just get consumed by what’s going on. I started becoming lax on my daily rituals of yoga and meditation because things were going so well! At first it didn’t affect me, but overtime I started to see my old patterns, moods and thoughts creeping in.
Am I mad at myself for abandoning my newly found ways once everything was great?
No. I’m human! We all do it.
BUT, because I’m mindfully aware and can see that the problem is my laziness, I know how to fix my problem.
That means getting my butt on my yoga mat, even when I don’t feel like it.
That means getting my headspace meditation in, even if I think I’m too busy for it.
That means slowing down, taking a deep breath and loving it all in.
We’re all human and we can plan, plan, plan and wish, wish, wish for positive changes, but just remember, once we obtain it it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s game over and we can go back to our old ways.
Nothing worthwhile is ever handed to us. We must work through the bad days to earn the good days. But remember, on those good days, we need to continue to work because what goes up will come down. It’s science.
Need a quick mindfulness exercise to add into your day? Try this one!
Once you make choosing positivity a part of your daily routine, you’ll soon start to see it becomes a habit and you automatically can call on that habit whenever you need it!!
Wishing You A Pain Free Day!