I often write about my books in a more personal way. This is one of those times. Perhaps you will recognize yourself or someone you know or love in the blog below. My books are listed on my Amazon Author Page. The link is over in the left hand column. There is also a link to my website....& the +350 Interactive Self-Hypnosis Programs that are available in mp3. These include medical hypnosis, self-development, learning self-hypnosis, programs for education, sports & kids self-improvement. If you need help selecting a program, just let me know.
OK...Day #18 of NHBPM...National Health Blog Post Month. I've stopped thinking of this as "irksome". It's interesting that it only takes 21 days to change any pattern, so I've achieved this....well, almost achieved this on Day 17...yesterday was the first day I felt the sense of enjoyment & freedom. This pleases me because the twisting of arms was never enjoyable & unfortunately I know that feeling all too well. So, what is the challenge for today? I am asked to "write my advice for someone caring for a patient with "my" condition.
I like this assignment. It's a big one & for me, very personal. Because this is a blog...not a book...I'll divide it up as I did in the books I've written of the subject. This is exactly how I went about taking care of myself during very difficult & frightening times.
FIRST - DIAGNOSIS
SECOND - CAREGIVER
THIRD - CARE PLAN First is the discussion of what is called "my condition." That, in itself, makes me smile. While I suppose it could be called a condition, to me it is better named "my sick lifestyle." I'm reminded of a patient who was sent to my private practice. His name was Joe, but I've met up with many patients like Joe, because they were all like me. Sick lifestyles came to be my specialty. The first time I met Joe, he sat down on my apricot colored recliner chair, but he was in no state to recline. He sat on the edge of the chair....you might say he was "on edge." His diagnosis was the same as mine..."sick lifestyle change disorder."
He was 42 years old & had just been discharged from the hospital after his first heart attack. He handed me the referral form from his cardiologist. "Joe needs to lose weight, stop smoking, drinking, over-eating, get off junk food, cut back on caffeine & get on a healthy eating plan, as well as to reduce stress. It would also help if he stopped indiscriminate prescription drug & over the counter meds for chronic back pain & headaches.
OH OH No wonder Joe was "on edge." He knew what was on the paper. It was a bleak diagnosis & prescription. Joe was overwhelmed. The good news was that he was no longer in denial. The heart attack had taken care of that. However, he wanted to believe that all he had to do was "transfer the monkey to my back." Joe wanted me to be his "caregiver" & make all of his problems "go away." Yes, Joe had a naive part, but like everyone else, he knew better. But the resilient part of Joe wasn't anywhere around. He had been abandoned. The changes he needed to make were far too big, too many & he already had a history of failure. I know many people like Joe. I've lived a good part of his life. I understand his distrust. I also understand his lack of belief in his own ability to change, I know how frightened he is, but what I know & Joe doesn't is that he has strong resilience & the fear that fills his body is going to be transmuted "by him" into a very strong power to heal.
It is my job to "coach" him through this, just as I coached myself & have written about in my books & programs. This is the life I was given to experience & the job I've been given to do for others. Yes, I know about "sitting on the edge." It's not comfortable. STEP ONE Joe comes to learn that he is his own "caregiver." He is totally responsible for everything. There are no more excuses or placing the blame anywhere. All of that is over. This is his new reality & Truth. Joe owns his life & his outcomes. This is a huge awakening for people like Joe. I know it was for me. I've written quite a bit about this & certainly my professional writing & counseling covers these subjects in detail. This is a big "letting go" & a major step in "maturity."
Being 42 & a successful business man has nothing to do with maturity. I know this first hand. I was 42, a mother, wife & professional medical practitioner, but in my own self-care, I was not mature. Joe was going to awaken, take responsibility, practice change over & over & fall in love with it. STEP TWO Joe was going to be happy to learn that while he had many things to accomplish in order to get healthy & stay that way, he could/would begin immediately & the changes in his body & mind would also begin immediately. Health is a "progression". Moments matter. Each moment has a thought. Thoughts matter. Thoughts lead to actions. Actions matter. High level health & performance is built moment by moment & Joe would be starting NOW.
I remember this surprising him....now, he moved to the back of the chair. He was no longer on the edge. He was at "full attention" & ready to "get on the bus." For those of you who know my work & images, you already know what I'm talking about. Joe was going to take care of EVERYTHING AT THE SAME TIME. This idea wasn't completely foreign to him because he already had great resilience. Joe had a past. He build many strengths during this past of his. He was not a beginner in managing things. He knew a lot & had lots of talent. He just needed to go & get it & then apply it to a new set of thoughts & actions. The outcomes would follow.
STEP THREE Joe would need a new organization for his lifestyle behaviors. He already knew about organization. He ran a business. He was also a father & husband. He had many organizational experiences to draw upon. Now, he was going to build an additional organization for his lifestyle behaviors. First, he needed some clean-up & decluttering of things that had made him ill. All of these started with thoughts & then moved into actions. Joe was not born over-weight, smoking, taking drugs or eating junk. He was born in a pure state & now he would begin again. He would clean up his act. It's like taking everything out of a room & then only bringing things back in that are useful, clean & ready to help. Just like in anything else, Joe needed tools for keeping his new organization running smoothly.
There were four major tools & he would become expert at working with them. He also had the choice to do a mediocre job, a good job or an excellent job. His thoughts & actions would determine his outcomes. As we went over choices, Joe was very clear about what he wanted. He now designed a new model for that. He also had tools for keeping the clutter & garbage out. Joe was now living in a new world, a world that he was in charge of & that he kept secure....from others & from his old Self. People often ask, when do I begin....my answer...YOU HAVE ALREADY BEGUN. Pay attention...