Just like you have to brush your teeth everyday to keep them clean, healthy, and strong, you have to work hard to stay positive daily when dealing with a chronic illness.
It's easy to fall into a pattern of negative thinking when confronted with a difficult situation. But, what's important to understand, is that we have the ability to turn this pattern around and put the focus on the good aspects of what may seem like an awful situation.
Every individual must find their own "mantra" as my therapist called it. What I mean is your unique way of stopping yourself from going down the proverbial rabbit hole of negative thinking. My personal mantra may sound simple and a bit silly, but it works for me and I use it everyday. I simply tell myself "don't go there" and look really hard at my situation and pull out the positive.
When confronted with a situation we each have the choice to focus on the negative or the positive. I like to site a specific example of a time that negative thinking could have essentially ruined my whole day. Instead I chose to look at the positive and let the upside set the tone for my day.
I'll never forget one morning when I got out of bed to go to the bathroom and almost fell flat on my face from tripping over my own feet. This scenario had the makings of an express ride to negative town. I could have easily and rightfully so started thinking about how horrible my life is that at 35 years old I couldn't even walk to the bathroom normally. This then would have led to my thinking about every part of my life as awful and surely I'd soon be contemplating my existence. INSTEAD, after reciting my silly mantra to myself, I decided to focus on the fact that I did not fall and that this must certainly mean that it was going to be a wonderful day because a potentially devastating situation was avoided and I was still in one piece.
It just takes one simple thought to change your outlook in any situation.
Living with MS, we know exactly what it means to not have control.. well, here's something we can control so I advise the control freak inside you to take full advantage of the ability to chose how you react in any situation.
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