Posted in after the diagnosis, coping with chronic illness, coping with life threatening illness, living with chronic illness, Living with Illness

What if there were health critics?

The beginning of the year brings lots of award shows.  So far we’ve had the “People’s Choice Awards”, “The Screen Actor’s Guild Awards”, “The Golden Globes” and this weekend we have “The Grammy Awards”.  Before any of the actors, musicians and other artists are nominated there are critics reviewing their projects.  Entertainment Weekly has critics give letter grades for films, books and music.  Every newspaper has a critic that reviews the new media hitting the market, an artistic report card that is totally subjective.

What if those facing chronic and life-threatening illnesses were in line to be reviewed…how would you fair?  This isn’t about how your body responds to treatment, but how well would you score on the things you have complete control over?  Take for example how compliant you are with your regimen?  Are you taking your pills when prescribed and in the prescribed dosage?  Are you engaging in the physical activity you and your doctor discussed following a coronary health problem?  How well have you cut the stress levels in your life?

If someone had a bird’s eye view of your life what would they write about you?  Would they write that you and conscious of your body and your health?  How would they describe your outward display of determination to get well?  What would they say about your mood; after all we know that our emotions impact our health.  How would they describe your use of available resources?  What would be the words they use to describe your relationships both personally, with friends, and medically, with your provider?

I ask you these questions because when we have the ability to take an objective look at our lives we often find small things that have a big impact.  We find small nuggets that will allow us to increase our personal health empowerment.  It gives us insight to what gets in our way and prevents us from optimal healing.  Our objectivity gives us the gift of what’s possible.  It shows us the gaps where we could try harder.  Maybe it’s not even about trying harder, but being more conscious, making each action more powerful, less of an effort and with greater results.

Consider writing a review as if you were a critic.  I know this may sound odd, but the truth is you’re already doing it in your head.  I’m simply suggesting you put it on paper and make it real.  Once it’s conscious it takes the air out of the tire decreasing your self-deprecating  inner dialogue.

What’s the biggest A-Ha you got when you wrote your review?  How were you able to take the wind out of the sails of the negative self-talk?  What will you do differently now that you have a greater level of consciousness.