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

Back on Track

We are definitely creatures of habit.  Habit gets a bad rap, especially when the habit isn’t good for us physically, emotionally, or spiritually, but they do make life predictable.  Unfortunately, when facing a chronic or life-threatening illness predictability goes out the window and your actions have to count toward health and healing.  Here’s the dilemma.  We all have those moments when something we do routinely gets derailed and getting back on track can be challenge in and of itself.

I’m back from a week away (I was at school) and got out of my daily routine.  I’m back, and as I got ready to sit down at the computer it felt odd, almost uncomfortable because my pattern had been broken.  It doesn’t take long to get derailed.  I was only gone 8 days and I still blogged while away, but the momentum I usually have is different.  It’s feeling a bit more forced this morning.

Why is this important?  Because if your treatment regimen calls for a certain routine and it gets disrupted how will we heal?  One example is for those in cardiac rehab, exercising daily and eating healthy would be important routines for wellness.  Go on a trip where there is no gym, and you’re left to your own devices like the bed that wants you to sleep a bit longer.  If you’re lucky enough to have someone cooking for you then that’s one burden you don’t have face.  The retreat center was extremely accommodating.  They served up various incarnations of the meals depending on individual’s dietary restrictions…but that’s not always the case.

It would be fabulous to believe that our health would be the motivation to get back on track upon our return, but that’s idealistic.  There is a re-entry phase that we all go through and the question is how to regain the focus and concentration before the break.

A key component is to remember, first and foremost, why you’re engaged in the habit or practice.  Getting in touch with your desire for health and healing is a strong catalyst for getting back on track.  Understanding that you may need a couple of days to turn up the volume means you’re being compassionate with yourself and that goes a long way in health and healing.  If you need external motivation, just remember the doctor is going to be asking you to do lab work and have an exam where you may have to confess your transgressions, so getting on track alleviates that stress.

We all know how important our health and healing habits are, but life is what it is…unpredictable and ever-changing.  I’d love to hear how you get back on track.  Let us all know so we can all continue the journey to wellness.