Quote of the Day

“We become what we think about all day long.”

–Ralph Waldo Emerson

If we think positively about how we live our lives even though we have fibromyalgia, then we can make those thoughts happen. If we think negatively and think tomorrow is going to be another painful day, then it will be. If we stay positive and think tomorrow will be a better day, then it will be.

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4 thoughts on “Quote of the Day

  1. i like this blog post – you have very positive and good intentions! however, my problem with this thought is the “blame the victim” mentality. if we can be pain-free just by correcting our thought patterns, then that means it is our fault every time we experience fibro pain. i just don’t buy it! sometimes a germ is just a germ, fibromyalgia is just fibromyalgia. do you know what i mean? i might experience pain tomorrow and i might not – but how positively i think does not usually affect future pain. all i can do is accept what-is in the moment, which gives me a sense of peace.

    • painfighter says:

      I don’t mean we can be pain free just by correcting our thought patterns. I have found personally that if I stay positive and upbeat emotionally, then my pain goes down some. If I can use the healthier thought patterns I’ve learned, and not my old patterns of obsessing, over achieving, worrying, etc., that my pain goes down. If I can stay in this healthier, more positive zone, then my pain is better (lower on the 0-10 pain scale). If I start getting anxious, upset, obsessive, whatever, then my pain is worse. There are many triggers for my pain out of my control (weather, a bad day at work, family problems, etc.). There are triggers I can control or avoid (stressful situations, loud noises, places with tons of people, being honest about what I’m going through and not lying about it, not exceeding/ignoring my body’s needs and limits, etc.). One day I may wake up and be totally pain free. It does happen. Until then I’m going to stay positive and do everything I can to make my days better, to make my pain better. I will have bad days. There’s nothing I can do about that. But I can keep working hard to make the pain less. I do believe we all go through a “victim” stage once we get the fibro diagnosis. We also go through denial and grieving stages. We do get to the acceptance stage and achieve some peace like you say. It’s nature. But we are not victims. We are strong and we are fighters.

      I blog a lot about fighting my fibromyalgia and waging a mental war against. Fibromyalgia is my enemy in this struggle but I also accept that it’s a part of me now. It’s part of who I am and what defines me. Those two ways of thinking are supposed to go together, but for me they do. It works for me. We all have to find what works for us.

  2. hi – i am honored that you wrote such a lengthy response. you are a very special and caring person! you and i are more on the same page than you might think. i do understand, believe me.

    i was not saying that we all go through a victim stage, but that one must take care with how things are stated. when susan sontag got cancer, she wrote about the ways (at first) she felt she should blame herself because, at least back then, there was the general thought that our attitudes caused cancer, so she felt like a victim of her own thoughts and attitudes.

    lately i’ve been working with mindfulness – allowing what-is to just be there. no effort to control what’s happening, pain or not – just being with it as it is.

    anyway, if you really believe this: “If we stay positive and think tomorrow will be a better day, then it will be” then i’d better just steer clear of your blog – sort of a “let’s shake hands and agree to disagree.”
    warm regards, mary

    • painfighter says:

      I do think that there is a degree of self fulfilling prophecy with fibromyalgia. If we stay positive and think tomorrow will be better it is more likely to be better. If we are depressed and assume that tomorrow will be as bad or worse than today then its more likely to be a bad day. My rheumatologist and I have discussed this. I know that thinking tomorrow will be a better day doesn’t mean it will be, but I think it improves my odds on it being a better day. I’m going to have bad day, terrible days with fibromyalgia. That’s the nature of this disease.

      I work on mindfulness too. Just last week my therapist reminded me to be careful of the messages I send myself. I am by nature very hard on myself and am learning to be much kinder to myself. Sometimes I still think too critically of myself and send my body a bad impression. Words and thoughts have meaning and power. My body reacts better to honesty and optimism. My body reacts with more pain to lies and negativity. I don’t know if that’s the case for everyone but it’s true for me. So I chose to stay positive to help me live with the pain and also to respect my body’s needs.

      I’ve done a lot of work to reconnect with my body and it’s needs after ignoring it for so long hoping the pain would go away. I accept the pain and fibromyalgia as part of who I am now but I do work on learning how to control it when I need to. If I enter a situation that triggers more pain for me I now have the skills to breathe through the pain, step away from the situation mentally and bring the pain back down. I don’t think I would’ve been able to learn how to do this without first accepting the pain as part of me.

      Choosing to stay positive and think tomorrow will be better is one of my ways of coping. It also helps my loved ones to see me tackling my fibromyalgia with a positive attitude instead of being depressed and helpless. They’ve seen me at my worst and its hard for them to see me so miserable and not be able to make me feel better. Staying positive does help me. Even if the pain isn’t better the next day, maybe I learned something that makes things better in a different way the next day. I’m much happier with a glass half full mentality than my old glass half empty outlook.

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