When I was 16, I started having some serious health problems, but it took 3 years to finally find an answer. I was told I had chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia, that I’d have it the rest of my life – living in pain that no one quite understood or seemed to have a solution for.
To say that I felt devastated was an understatement.
It took many years, different approaches, and a lot of failures before I found the right way forward and the path that had been waiting for me the whole time. While the journey wasn’t always fun, I wouldn’t change it for the world.
Because while I have boundaries in place to manage pain and fatigue, all of them have made me a healthier, more balanced, and happier person. There are so many areas of my life that I focused on to make a comeback from fibromyalgia, and I’d like to share them with you today.
These aren’t instant solutions to overcoming fibromyalgia. In fact, many of them took years, but they are areas of your life that you can make small adjustments in a way that works for you and helps you have a higher quality of life.
Area #1: Nutrition
I invested in working with health coaches and certified nutritionists to better understand what the foods in my body were doing to my biology. Countless hours of research in holistic approaches to natural foods and their benefits definitely paid off.
Your body is affected by what you put in it, but sometimes it can feel so confusing to figure out what the right next step is. What foods do I eliminate? Which do I eat more of? How often do I eat for my metabolism?
All those questions and more were answered through working with people who specialized in it, doing my own research, and listening to my body about how it felt after eating certain foods. As a bonus, I was taught HOW to eat, not just what to eat. Slowing down and allowing for better digestion was huge in having better blood sugar and avoiding energy crashes.
Area #2: Sleep
It’s no secret that a poor nights’ sleep tends to go hand in hand with fibromyalgia. I used to think that I just needed more rest and sleep to feel better, but that actually had the opposite effect. Sleeping too many hours actually added to my fatigue and made me feel foggy.
By creating a routine of I get in bed between “9:00 pm and 10:00 pm” and I wake up between “6:00 am and 7:00 am”, I’ve been able to allow flexibility within a steady sleeping routine that has made all the difference in the world.
When I was first creating that routine, I used meditation apps to relax and fall asleep at the new time and I have an alarm clock that slowly lights up like the sun to wake up easier in the morning. The app was free, and the alarm clock was under $20.00 – inexpensive and easy solutions that make all the difference.
Area #3: Job
Choosing a job that allowed me to work remotely from home was one of the best decisions I’ve made for my career and finances. Over the last several years, I’ve become a certified health and life coach, learned what it takes to market an online business, and continue to work with clients who also want to have successful online businesses.
While my online business was growing, I continued to work part-time. The transition was tiring at times, but it actually challenged me (in a good way) to seek more balance in my life and follow through on activities that will keep me healthy.
Area #4: Stress and Exercise
I put stress and exercise together because, for me, they go hand-in-hand. My stress levels -physical and emotional – compound and trigger my pain and fatigue. Exercise (or movement if that word feels better for you) is the BEST thing I can do to move stress out of my body and keep my body strong.
Long ago, I chose to look at exercise and movement differently. Instead of following the family story I had been taught, that “exercise was something you HAVE to do, but it’s awful,” I made a new story that better fit what I want to believe.
Movement makes me feel good, makes me feel strong, makes me sleep better, and makes me a happier person to be around. I move because I deserve to feel good, to feel strong, to sleep better, and to be a happier person to be around.
Currently, I practice a lot of yoga and use a rowing machine for my exercise. There’s no specific routine or schedule – my goal is to move for 20-minutes/day, but some days I actually increase it to 40-minutes.
Area #5: Mindset
For me, my mindset transformation started with choosing to believe that I wouldn’t always be trapped in pain, isolated, and unhappy. I had to decide that there were other options out there than what I was being told were my two paths forward. My mindset work brought up a lot of limiting beliefs, past pain, and insecurity that I began to work through, forgive, and release. The more I set down and grew past, the stronger I got and the more I could do.
For me, journaling and being creative has always been a great outlet for putting a pulse to negative consequences and fears that are affecting my emotional happiness and physical strength.
Your Next Step:
This list is just a snapshot into how I made a comeback from fibromyalgia, and I hope it’s shown you that where you are right now, is not where you have to stay. If you want to be more, do more or have more in your life, you absolutely can. I encourage you to get curious about what’s going on in your life that you want to change and find the people and resources that can help.
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