When you suffer from a chronic pain condition such as Fibromyalgia, you can find yourself in a never-ending cycle. This cycle involves feeling stressed because of the pain, the stress causing anxiety, the anxiety making the pain feel more intense and then pain in turn increasing the stress. Pain, anxiety and stress all make you feel unhappy. Although being happy will not take away your pain, it can make it more bearable.
It's easy to give into the stress you live with every day because of your chronic pain. Taking a positive approach to life can help lessen the stress, anxiety and even the pain itself.
To help you deal with pain better, below you will find 10 ways that may help you be happy despite living with a chronic pain condition. These are things we should implement in our lives even if we aren't living with a chronic pain condition, but even more so if we are.
You Don't Need To Be A People Pleaser
It's interesting to note that we often feel worse when we let other people down rather than when we let ourselves down. Even though the majority of people that really matter in our life will understand if we are unable to keep appointments or do things we had intended to do. Try to remember that you do not have to please everyone and that not everyone is expecting everything from you. When you start adopting that attitude, you will start to feel less burdened and happier.
Know Being Happy Takes Work
The saying goes that there is nothing worth having in life that doesn't require work. Although it would be nice to just wish for something and for it to be so. To just go to sleep and wake up feeling free of pain and the stresses it causes. However, this is simply not the case.
We have to work to change our mindset and attitude towards the positive. In addition, this may involve big and difficult changes in our thought processes and a lot of effort. Just like anything – relationships, work, and even pain management – to be successful it does take work.
Therefore, to be happy, we need to work on being happy. Positive affirmations can help, as well as being around positive people and learning the skill of seeing the silver lining behind every cloud and the positive side of even the worst situations.
Understand There Are No Guarantees In Life
Often the thing that stops us from really putting the effort required to achieve happiness is the lack of guarantees. When we aren't sure what will happen, we tend to not want to put the effort in. It's important though we understand that there simply is no guarantees in life. Understanding there are no guarantees can help us take the risks to put forward the effort that could make our life happier.
Avoid Comparing Yourself To Other People
It is only human to be envious or make comparisons to other people, especially those living without Fibromyalgia. But most of the time, it only makes us feel worse. It really doesn't matter what everyone else is doing and who they are – it only matters who we are. When we understand this, we can embrace our life and our experience and make the very best of what we have and we can feel happier.
Free Yourself Of The Need For Control
Although it is good to be in control of our life, when we have a chronic pain condition, we can often feel the need to have a control over everything. That need for control can make us feel anxious and stressed. When we let go of that need for control, not giving up but realizing that sometimes things simply aren't going our way – we can able to feel happy, no matter how much pain we are in, in one word this is called acceptance.
Celebrate The Small Things In Life
It's good to celebrate the big events in life. However, putting too much focus on the big events can also mean that we avoid the smaller victories and happenings in our life. The small things that happen every day can be the greatest sources of joy. When we start to take notice of those and enjoy them, we can feel happier on a day-to-day basis and not just on special occasions.
Make Your Own Happiness
We can find it easier to rely on other people to make us happy, but in doing that we also give them the power to ruin our chances for happiness. For example, if your husband or wife comes home stressed from the day's events at work, you can let his unhappiness darken your own great day. It is better to rely on yourself and take responsibility for your own attitude and feelings, which will not only prevent their unhappiness from rubbing off on you, but may in turn make them feel better.
Be Honest And Real
Often we try to invent and create a version of life that doesn't exist, such as wishing that Fibromyalgia did not exist. In an effort to avoid confronting things we don't like about life, we can avoid speaking truths. Sometimes we hold on to the truths until they explode. This stress can have a monumental effect on someone with normal health, let alone on someone who has Fibromyalgia. Rather than pretending everything is okay, it is healthier to be honest – even if that means admitting, everything isn't. In this situation, if we are real and honest from the start, we can avoid the stress that has built up holding back these truths and sink into the calm and peace that goes with true acceptance of reality as it is.
No One Is Always Happy
Everyone has bad days. It is important we keep in mind that it normal and okay. We are allowed to have a bad day and to feel happy. By thinking that we should always be happy, we can set yourselves up with unreasonable expectations, which create more stress and more pain.
Live For The Moment
It is easy to be wrapped up in past errors and mistakes. Holding on to things that have happened though will not help us when we are suffering from Fibromyalgia. It is more beneficial to live in the now, to be glad of what we have and the good things that are happening now. Staying in the moment is one of the easiest ways to improve our level of happiness every single day.
To conclude, besides the tips above, you could try other methods such as cognitive behavioral therapy and other suggestions offered in the FREE eBook - 50 Ways To Improve Life When Living With Fibromyalgia.