- I keep as active as I am able.
Luckily, most of the time I am able to cycle (I don’t have a car any more), which I love. Sometimes, when my knees are bad, it’s actually easier to cycle than it is to walk.
- I also do some sort of exercise when I can.
At the moment Zumba classes and pilates are my exercise classes of choice. As well as helping me physically, exercise is also beneficial for me emotionally. It promotes a more positive relationship with my body – where I love what it can do, instead of hating it for what it can’t.
- Mindfulness and meditation.
I find both useful for life in general, but also for living with an unpredictable chronic condition. Mindfulness helps me stop projecting ahead so that when I get a bad flare up, I stop thinking about all the things it might stop me doing tomorrow. It’s a waste of energy when the chances are it will be somewhere else tomorrow – or gone altogether. Mindfulness keeps me in the now and also, when things are bad, allows me to feel bad without feeling guilty that I ‘should’ be being ‘stronger’!
- I love to sing. I also love music.
Live music and singing with others keep me sane.
- Resting and making sure I get enough sleep.
While I enjoy an active social life, I need to make sure that I get enough sleep. Not working full-time means that I can lie in if necessary, and working for myself means that I can work from bed if I am too tired to leave the house, but still able to function.
- Massage and reflexology
Both are great for promoting relaxation. Neither are ‘cures’.
- Heat patches are great for taking the edge off an acute attack