I have always been a fan of the top ten lists. They are concise, informative and helpful. I have done thousands of top ten lists for fashion, beauty and gift ideas for television but never one for arthritis. So here goes, my first top ten ideas for coping with arthritis.
Be kind to yourself. You have a serious disease. Don’t get mad, it’s a road life has taken you on. Don’t beat yourself up for what you can’t do, concentrate on what you can do.
Try not to give in or up. This is an ongoing disease, you have to figure out how to live with it. Figure out what works in your life and what doesn’t and listen to your body. Giving up is giving in. We must always fight. Always.
Don’t talk about arthritis all the time. I have a five-minute rule with my friends. We can talk about our aches and pains for five minutes and then we move on. Talking about it all the time doesn’t help you nor your family and friends.
Put the focus on others. Be interested in their lives. Arthritis is a boring, monotonous disease. We have to deal with it, but our friends and family don’t need every detail. Focus on what is going on in their lives. It’s amazing how much it will take your focus off of yourself.
Do things for others. Your family, your friends, other people with this disease. The more you do the less time you will have to worry and fret over your life. Helping others is one of the best medicines of all.
Don’t stop until you find a doctor who relates to you and your life. Treat them with respect. They are the key to your health maintenance.
Don’t be afraid of new medicines. Instead of concentrating on the side effects, concentrate on the hope. With each one you try you are one step closer to one that will work.
When the disease takes over, plan something fun for when you feel better. Lunch with a friend. A movie. A new novel. Something to look forward to after a setback.
Keep up your grooming routine. By letting yourself go you are giving in. We are fighters, not quitters. It is easier to fight with a little blush on your cheeks, a colored gloss on your lips.
Give back to arthritis. Raise money. Raise awareness. Make a difference. Concentrate on the hope for the future and then volunteer. There is much to be done, do what you can.
This list was excerpted from a 2014 blog by Christine and re-posted by special request.