Chronic illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease and fibromyalgia or autoimmune diseases can affect every aspect of your life, if you let it. Oftentimes, people diagnosed with a lifelong disease can become quite depressed and psychologically speaking, not well. The important thing is to stay positive and continue living your life. Now, obviously this is easier said than done, but it can really help you feel like you're living in your normal day-to-day. Here are some tips to improve your lifestyle in spite of this diagnosis.
1. Channel your inner creative: Whether you love to learn music, write short stories, paint or plant in the garden, finding your inner creative genius can make you feel transformative and powerful. It also reminds your brain that you can create things of your own.
2. Get more involved: Trying a new activity or getting involved in local community events and organizations can help you feel you're making an impact. There are even groups that gather around your own condition to lend support and share lifestyle ideas for living with the illness.
3. Get up and get ready for the day: This can be a huge weight off your shoulder and make you feel extra energetic. Sometimes getting ready for the day even if you're not going anywhere can make you feel a little brighter.
4. Enter the great outdoors: Breathe in fresh air and feel the breeze on your face. When you've been stuck indoors for a long period time, standing in the rain can be wonderful. If you need to be in bed, have a family member or friend bring you something from outside like a beautiful rock, leaf or seashell.
5. Transport yourself: Try listening to an audio book or watching a new series on Netflix. Nothing can overcome your day to day reality like a healthy dose of fiction. It can make you dream and think about different things.
6. Embrace laughter: Did you know your endorphin levels increase when you laugh? These hormones will leave you happy. When you laugh, make it big. Breathe deeper, laugh out loud and live in the moment.
7. The gift of giving: Giving to others, especially the important people in your life, can make you feel so good. Patient, compromise, communication and honesty are the pillars of what we reflect on when living with a chronic disease. Find ways to tell people how much you appreciate them especially those that help take the best care of you.