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People always talk about finding positive coping mechanisms, and I always find they’re hardest to remember when you’re not feeling well. It’s helpful to have some sort of plan, as discussed in one of Health Skills’ blog entries on coping strategies.

Perhaps you could say this post is more for my own reference, but here are a few “healthy” coping mechnanisms that I try to keep in my knapsack:

  • Going for a walk
  • Go swimming
  • Creating something – a physical craft, a work of writing, a batch of vegan cookies…you name it
  • Petting my dog. He can always use more belly rubs.
  • Sitting in the garden or some other place outside
  • Light gardening
  • Reading one of my “comfort books” (Pride and Prejudice springs to mind)
  • Meditating
  • Stretching/doing yoga
  • Making a point of eating breakfast and other healthy foods
  • Buying a bouquet of cut flowers, especially if it’s winter and there are none in the garden
  • Planning potential vacations for when I feel better (even if I never actually go, the thought of going to the Caribbean always perks up my mood)
  • Bird-watching
  • Listening to music or a stand-up comedy tape
  • Lighting a candle
  • Talking to friends and others in my support system

Recently life was difficult because life circumstances made it very difficult to utilize a lot of my coping mechanisms. (It’s hard to go for a walk when your foot hurts if you put any weight on it.) That’s when it’s hardest to use those healthy skills, rather than fall back on things like eating lots and lots of chocolate. It’s still a work in progress for me. I’m hoping having a record of this will help with future flare-ups.

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I wrote the following piece after a visit to Guatemala in 2004, and it’s more “creative writing”-y than some of the other things I’ve written.

I think it’s very relevant to healing issues that we are able to let go of control when there’s nothing we can do to change a situation. Buddhists call this principle equanimity. Greeting card writers call this principle “don’t sweat the small stuff.” Alcoholics Anonymous refer to the Serenity Prayer. It’s all the same principle.

I should also mention that this piece can be read as romanticizing of daily life in Guatemala without suitable historic, cultural, or social context. Bear in mind that I was years younger when I wrote this, and that there is much more to Guatemala than dangerous public transit. So, if you can, bear with my younger self as I explore life lessons found in daily experiences.

***

I had heard stories about the “chicken buses” typically found in Central American countries.  My mother—who lived in Guatemala for two years—talked about them with a knowing laugh.  Chicken buses:  even the name sounded uncomfortable, the harsh consonants jammed together like people on the bus.  Traveling with livestock was not my idea of a comfortable journey.  But then, how else are people who don’t have cars supposed to carry their chickens across long distances? Read the rest of this entry »

My Etsy Store

A fibro-friendly item from my Etsy store

I've been working on making fibro-friendly jewelry. I'd love it if you checked them out by clicking the image above, or going to www.etsy.com/people/RogueCrafter

About Me

This blog is intended as a place for me to reflect on my own healing journey, in the hopes that others may also gain insight from my experiences. I've "borrowed" a line from Robert Frost's poem, The Road Not Taken:

'Two roads diverged in a wood, and I
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.'

I think the most important thing for me now is that I feel empowered to be a force for positive change in my life. And that, my friends, has made all the difference.

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