1. Seek out medical professionals who understand fibromyalgia
Keep persisting until you find a doctor or specialist that you feel meets your needs and provides you with the time you need in each appointment. It's no easy feat. I encourage you to keep seeking until you are happy with someone that hears you and provides the support you need.
As you explore how to manage your fibromyalgia symptoms best, it's also crucial to research treatments and research scientific findings related to fibromyalgia, chronic pain, and any other fibromyalgia symptoms experiencing. Currently, there is much debate into what causes fibromyalgia and, sadly, no cure. You need to learn about all your fibromyalgia symptoms and explore a range of fibromyalgia treatments to find what works best for you. Remember that any therapy that can improve life quality and fibromyalgia symptoms should be investigated and given a chance to work.
3. Set realistic goals so you can feel accomplished
It can be challenging to accept your fibromyalgia body and accept your current abilities. But setting unrealistically high expectations can lead to harsh self-judgment, poor self-care, and even depression and anxiety. One of the biggest challenges of a fibromyalgia diagnosis is learning to pace ourselves. Never push yourself beyond what you are physically capable of, do what you can, and appreciate those abilities. Pushing yourself too much can end in a fibromyalgia flare. Read more about 3 Top Tips to Avoid Fibromyalgia Flares.
4. Surround yourself with good people
Spend time with supportive, positive, and understanding people who give you the emotional support you need. Please stay away from negative people who doubt your symptoms and are not supportive, and their negativity is like a poison that can damage your outlook and wellness. If you don’t have these people in your life, attend a support group or connect online with supportive fibromyalgia communities.
Support groups are places where you can learn more about fibromyalgia and living with a chronic illness and give some back to others by sharing the insights you have gained through your own experience. Even if supportive family and friends surround you, it can be a relief to connect with others with fibromyalgia and know they go through the same thing as you.
5. Be vigilant about your mental health
If you feel you have symptoms of depression, which is common among people with fibromyalgia, seek help from a qualified professional. Discover how to Improve Your Emotional & Mental Health Despite Fibromyalgia Pain.
6. Talk, talk, & talk some more
Express all your feelings, especially your anger, frustrations, anxiety, and fears, to trusted sources. Cry when you need to. Crying is an excellent release of emotion that can be causing you tension and exacerbating your pain and fatigue. Take a moment to mourn your old life, and then take time to plan out your new life. Read more about 6 Ways to Relax When Overwhelmed.
7. Minimize stress
Eliminate all possible sources of stress and utilize stress-reducing activities. For example, meditation, Tai Chi, Yoga, good quality sleep, low-stress work, happy relationships, and many other actions can help reduce stress to improve your condition and quality of life. Read more about Diet, Emotional Stress & Fibromyalgia.
8. Rewrite your life
If you once ran marathons, it might be time to let that go and design a less demanding exercise plan to achieve and stick with those goals. You might have to change jobs or get more help with the kids than you used to. It’s okay; making these changes is all part of the process of acceptance of your life with fibromyalgia.
9. Ask for help
Don't let fear, anxiety, or pride stand in the way of getting as much help as you need it, no matter the circumstances. Fibromyalgia is a poorly understood chronic illness by the wider community and even medical professions, but you have every right to ask for and get the help you need. Look for services available to you; depending on where you live, you may be able to obtain a disability sign for your car, discounted public transport fare, and a disability card. Don’t hesitate to call your local supermarket and ask what discounts they offer on home delivery for people with disabilities. Museums & Art shows often provide discounts for those that carry a disability card. If you are isolated or stuck in a low mood, it might help you get out to a museum or art show, even if only briefly.
10. Look for the silver linings
Look for hope, joy, and positivity by practicing gratitude and mindfulness. Life presents us with harsh circumstances living with fibromyalgia, but we can often find something positive in our day if we look hard. For example, perhaps you have made a new friend in a support group that you can relate to and discuss your experience with fibromyalgia, or yo