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Life Coaching/Mentoring

Research Study: Week 2 Mind-Body Connection

Our Sweet Sadie in the Backyard

“When we are “stuck in our head” with constant thoughts and worries, we lose the subtle signals of discontent from our body.” Quote from the study.

I successfully have completed week 2, with some changes from week 1. I changed the yoga portion to 3 times per week. It is so much better. I don’t hurt every day, & am not so tired.

I still am struggling with the ‘tree’ pose. I have learned a couple of things though. I need a bit of stabilization, so I make sure I am close to something I can reach out & touch to maintain my balance. Surprisingly, I most often only need to touch lightly with one finger. I also have figured out that even putting my hands at my heart level is difficult & if I leave them at my side or maybe raised a tiny bit from my side I can maintain my balance much better. Now that I have gone backward, I will be able to move forward. Great lesson learned here – if something is too hard, examine, & if necessary step back & let yourself get the basics down. Most of us fell down a lot while learning to walk, we held onto walls, tables, someone’s hand & eventually we could do it on our own. In all the things we try learning the basics are the first steps. This balance challenge gives me the opportunity to develop my balance & be successful.

The Behaviour Change for this week builds on week 1. We identified 3-5 core values the first week & this week we were to identify why those values are important; what benefit do we get from those values. An example, one of my values is health: that is an important value to me & has become more important as health challenges have confronted me the last few years. There are several reasons why this is one of my top values 1) I need my health if I want to be able to help others 2) I feel better mentally, physically, emotionally 3) I don’t have to rely so much on others & feel like I am a burden to family & friends 4) I still have things I want to do & I need my health to be able to do those things. As I went through my values & their benefit to me, it all seemed very selfish. I was benefitting, but what was I giving or how was I helping others. That lead to a great deal of thought. My conclusion, so far, is that the benefit I get from my values enables me to give to others, to be of service to others.

The nutrition tip this week was about salt intake. Read labels. It is amazing the food items that have salt in the ingredients. This is not a huge problem in our house as we generally cook without salt, & rarely eat processed foods i.e. deli meats. A few months ago we tried no sodium cream of chicken soup – it was horrible. Some things do need a bit of salt & other seasonings help a great deal. I love herbs & spices & experimenting with them in a variety of foods.

The physician’s message this week was about how PBC is diagnosed. What he had to say was straightforward & sounded very familiar to me. I do wonder though why it took so long for doctors to diagnose mine. I know the symptoms are similar to other diseases & disorders, but some of my symptoms were textbook. Dry eyes, dry mouth, horrid itching, & unexplainable fatigue. Oh well, that is the past & I am in a good spot now with treatment. The symptoms don’t go away, but I have better ways to deal with them. The activity, meditation, diet are all things that I knew were of benefit. I was having a great deal of trouble with activity as every time I would try to add activity, as in exercise, to my daily routine I would end up so tired & achy I couldn’t do anything for 2-3 days. My husband already does so much extra around the house that I don’t want my doing exercise mean I do less in the home. I think I might finally be getting an idea of how much I can do with exercise & still be able to maintain some sense of accomplishment around the house.

PBC symptoms (primary biliary cholangitis) don’t always all come together. The dry mouth doesn’t seem to go away. The fatigue is always there, but I can usually deal with it if I plan. However, the fatigue also likes to surprise me. I can be sitting doing nothing & all of a sudden I am totally exhausted, my body & mind are tired & I need to lie down. I have had to leave events because of the fatigue catching me off guard. I can generally manage 2 – 3 hours of being active per day, so long as I don’t go overboard with the activity. The itch is horrid & pushes my mental health to the edge. Medications do help. I am a little dumb sometimes & don’t realize that I have started to scratch & then the itch takes over. I’m sure if I took medication earlier it would be better & the itching wouldn’t get so bad. I’m learning – but sometimes I am just slow.

Week 3 starts today. I will let you know next week how it goes.

Stay safe, stay healthy.

From my heart to you!

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