Sunday

What to Do When You Just Feel Bad About Your Health

You may be tired of the way you look, feel, or both. When you look back on photographs of your past there is the feeling of either wishing you could go back, an appreciation of how far you have come, or thoughts of how you let yourself go over the years. Whatever the feeling, you are at a place in your life of unhappiness and you know you need to do something about it.

Some of us have a family history of disease, pain, mental, and physical challenges, while others may not be aware of any chronic illnesses in the family, but find that something strange is happening within our bodies the older we get. It doesn’t make anyone feel any better when another news report tells us that a beloved food or drink is cancer causing. So what do you do when you find that internally you don’t feel well and your doctor has been so kind to advise you to change your eating habits, exercise, and get proper rest while writing out a prescription for whatever ails you? Meanwhile, those around you are gradually dying and that has been an additional stress that has also contributed to your physical pain. The following will help you sort out your internal challenges and better prepare you for your next doctor’s visit.

You will need a note pad and pen to achieve results with this advice. Let’s begin in steps. First, you will want to begin journaling your health concerns include the date you started. Then you will need to interview yourself just like the doctor may have done with you, if you have visited him or her already, the only difference is that you are going to delve deeper in questioning yourself and spend more time thinking of things you may have forgotten to tell your doctor or just didn’t want to share. I personally noted my own observations of bodily changes using a calendar, rather than a notepad. I found it easy to see any possible patterns. Taking the initiative to document your health concerns prior to a doctor visit, is extremely helpful to him or her, because they will have a better understanding of what might be causing you to feel the way you do. Many people don’t bother to think thoroughly about their health experiences prior to visiting their doctor and they leave it all up to him or her to figure out everything. No one knows your symptoms better than you do, so write down what you can remember and if you aren’t a writer use a recorder.

You will start your interview with self by asking questions such as, “What kind of symptoms have I been experiencing lately that has been hindering me at home, work or play?” You make a note of your feelings and bodily changes. You pen dates and times if you can remember and also if anyone said anything to you about any symptoms they may have witnessed you go through such as mood swings, irritability, vomiting, fever, etc.

Next you record what kind of life changes both good and bad you have been experiencing lately. A job loss, a new job, business opportunity, relocations, marriage, death, a birth of a child: are all circumstances whether expected or unexpected that can cause major stress.

Third, if you know your family’s medical history, make a note of any illnesses they may have had and list any similar health problems you went through in the past and include dates and any medications you were prescribed.

Fourth, write down what you are doing to cope. Are you exercising, reading, shopping, watching television, popping pills, drinking alcohol or taking illegal drugs to manage the pain? Include how often you are participating in these activities. Think of whether the music you are listening to, the books you are reading or the shows you are watching on television are positive. There are many people who will avoid listening, watching, or reading anything that is tragic, because they know how it makes them feel afterward which is usually depressed.

Fifth, you will want to think when was the last time you took a vacation, had sex, got time off from work, slept in, or simply did something fun for you! Write the date, how often, and describe anything that may have happened that affected your health.

Now that you have taken the time to think about your life events and behaviors, you will want to do the sixth step and that is create a plan to make some changes that have been causing unnecessary stress for you. Think of what you have been eating lately, when you have been eating these things, and how frequently. Consider doing some research on what constitutes healthy eating. Create a shopping list rich in fruits and vegetables. Also, educate yourself about fasting (this is abstaining from certain foods, juicing or going without food or drink for a set period of time.) Talk to your doctor about fasting if you are interested in doing it. If he or she says it’s okay, then you will want to journal your experience with fasting. Some people fast as little as 24 hours while others will fast up to 40 days. Those who have participated in fasting will tell you they learned a lot about their own personal struggles, fears, and body while partaking in the fast and soon after made some changes in their eating habits. For those who participate in fasts for spiritual reasons, they found that their faith in God became stronger. However, true spiritual fasts are God ordained, so you will want to pray if you feel like participating in one. They aren’t easy (in my life time I have participated in some lengthy ones ). You will want to tell someone who can hold you accountable about what you are doing. He or she should be someone who you admire, respect, and is eating healthy.

Lastly, include some time during the day to exercise. You can walk during your lunch hour, stretch in front of the television or do some other exercise that is comfortable for you. Seek out professional instruction on what kind of exercise is best for your body weight. Not every exercise is good for everyone.

In conclusion, when you have made up in your mind that you are sick and tired of being sick and tired, you will be building up the motivation to do what you need to do to make you look and feel better. Don’t worry over the exact date and time, just do it. Outline your goals and when you achieve them, don’t do like some people and treat yourself to some food or activity that is harmful to your health; instead, do something that won’t make you feel guilty.

By Nicholl McGuire

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Over 20 years office work experience, six years completed college coursework, background in print media and communications, recognized for exceptional attendance and received merit increase for past job performance, self-published author and part-time entrepreneur, Internet marketing and social media experience. Interned for non-profit organization, women's group and community service business. Additional experience: teaching/training others, customer service and sales. Learn more at Nicholl McGuire and Nicholl McGuire Media

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