When we first notice our health failing us. Everything suddenly changes: going in and out of the health care settings, seeing Doctors, getting way too familiar with hospitals. The point is, Spoonie life is repetitive and it's very easy to get routinely dressed in negativity. There is no magic cure for this but there is one important thing you can do that will change your life - no matter your health issues.
It's really hard sometimes and harder still to understand, but hear me out. Being a positive person is a CHOICE. I know that sounds cheesy, lame, Corny & Cringe, but stay with me. When you choose to be positive it influences you to be in a better mindset; gradually you begin recognising what you have, big or small, instead of focusing on what you don't have or are what your life has lost. Think about it, what good comes out of negativity?
Negativity has the power to make yourself so upset, you hurt internally. Hurt overcomes you like a dark cloud, changing who you are and how you react to everything. You can easily become a rude and isolated person, darkness consumes you. The reality is, being negative causes harm. There is a correlation between negativity and mental health struggles. It's like a void making you fall lower and lower. Depression on top of health issues is too much for anyone, especially Spoonies. We acknowledge that often the physical health issues come with mental health issues, but there is no rulebook on how to mourn for the lives we lost or we expected to have. Seemingly, everyone around you gets to live- except you. sound familiar? You are not alone, you are never alone!
When we are positive we hurt ourselves less. We are more able to think of things that make us happy & do these things to find relief from our health issues even for a moment. When we are positive, we are more able to share our stories. To connect with the Spoonie community. Our souls are one.
Being positive is a fight just like living with chronic illnesses, we are spoonie warriors. The truth is, every day you wake up is a battle won & one more reason to smile and be positive! Ok Autumn, so how can you go from a negative place to a positive place? Well, lovelies from my experiences I know of 3 tricks!
1) Fake it until you make it.
Like a great actor/actress throw yourself into the role of a happier you. Treat yourself with love & kindness. Do the things that make you happy. Binge a tv show, watch funny or cute things. I love animals and I challenge anyone to find cute pics of puppies, kittens, ducks, bunnies, any animals and not find a way to smile.
2) SMILE. I was someone who hadn't smiled in a photograph in years. In fact, I didn't smile much at all. I felt like I had nothing to smile about. I was undiagnosed, gaining weight, in pain and being bullied. In the same way, my clothes not fitting brought me heartbreak and sadness, I no longer believed I would ever fit into society. That I would ever be accepted. I was on a self-imposed exile on a lonely Island. The longer I stayed isolated, the longer I would spiral. Even deciding to be positive wasn't enough- I was missing a key ingredient. It was as simple as another spoonie with an intoxicating smile encouraging me to copy her.
Guess what! When you smile, even a fake smile, endorphins tell your brain you are happy. At that moment, as much as I was acting- I felt happy. Even though you and your brain know it's a fake smile, it's just how the body works. Who knew biology would work for us spoonies! So, Keep smiling it's fun & burns calories too!
Best of all smiles are contagious & disarming. Smile at yourself, in pictures, at those you love, at animals, at those you don't know. It will make them feel good and they might even smile back, how many smiles can your smile make in a day? Even the meanest person can be disarmed by a smile ...even if not immediately, I promise that smile will bring them joy and cause them to do good. Some people are so hurt they need time to process but a smile is a powerful tool! Also try smiling at an animal, especially a dog, they love it & will love you...and soon that fake smile we spoke about will be your smile & gateway to happy days ahead!
3) Share your stories. Be open and honest about the bad & hard times ... Because with chronic health issues it is so cathartic to say what's going on or even ask for advice on a certain ailment. Also, be sure to keep a positive tone and keep fighting. Encourage others to fight with you. We are all siblings and spoonie warriors, after all, so let's fight together for every small victory! You are not alone, you will find comfort in positivity, and you will help inspire others to choose positivity.
Being negative is easy and harmful and honestly, the world has so many negative people. I ask you to be positive & to fight to remain that way. It will make everything you do through in the battle for your health that much easier, I promise. Good beats evil, the light brightens any darkness.
Written by Autumn Green and edited by Daisy Hannah