Step 5 Pain and Pacing

Pacing is very important, not just for chronic pain but for other health issues. Some people have erratic blood pressures or excess fatigue. Pacing is important – slowing down when you are inclined to do too much, or increasing your activity when you feel completely shut down. 

Chronic pain affects your life. We try to push through. But when you have chronic pian, you have to fit your life around your pain. If you don’t, you will pain that quickly overwhelms you. Once that happens, it is harder to manage the pain.

Chronic pain will often not go away completely. This can be very overwhelming but once you realize that you can manage your pain, you will stress less about having it. If you stress less, you will have less pain.

Most people who have chronic pain get periods where they hurt worse.

When that happens, often, they push themselves – go full out – and set themselves up for suffering. The pain after ignoring your body’s limitations can be severe. And can last a long time. When it let’s up, more than likely, you are bound to jump in, do too much, and the cycle starts all over.
When you have failed to pay attention to pacing, you will notice pain. Here is a good recovery pose. You can slip into this pose on the bed or on the floor and can do it every time you have pain. Sometimes that can mean you will be in this position for most of the day.

Here is another explanation for pacing – have a look at the link which talks about something called The Spoon Theory

Now that you know about pacing, how do you apply it? Start by doing activities that you enjoy. Time it. See when you start and then see when the pain starts. Now you know that you should do that fun activity for just a shorter amount of time – then stop – stretch – do something else – and much later – go back to the activity.

That means you need to find many different things that give you joy. Not easy. Especially when you are in pain. If this it happening too much, it means you need to stop your activities and for weeks focus on dedicated stretching and walking until your body is strong enough to reach your goals.

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