If you’ve never been there, then you’re lucky. I’ve got a passport filled with stamps from Sprained Ankle-ton, Tendonitis-ville, and most recently Broken Toe-town, among others. It sucks! As of late I’ve been throwing myself a pity-party, where whine and sulk are appropriately featured on the menu.
The simple fact of the matter is that physical harm and suffering associated with a serious injury can often have an impact on mental health. The emotional trauma of a sudden and severe injury can increase the risk of a person developing anxiety, such as Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or depression. A person’s mental health can be further affected when serious injuries result in a loss of skills (I miss running and cycling and just being active) and opportunities (I had to cancel my much-anticipated ballet course); being unable to participate in everyday activities such as work (meh… I’m lucky I currently work from home), study and socializing; worries about finances and the future.
Be that as it may, I’m trying to get myself out of this funk and I’ve devised a little post-injury do’s and don’ts list to help:
- Laugh! It’s the best medicine.
- Snuggle with a loved one, human or fury creature.
- Try to exercise in whatever way you can – even if it’s just stretching.
- Reach out to others for support and distractions.
- Concentrate on brightening someone else’s day.
- Use your down time to do that thing that you never have time to do… finish that book, start painting, learn a new language.
- Write in your journal… or blog, case in point.
- Attitude of gratitude. Make a list of all the things you are grateful for.
- Read a little bit of an uplifting book every day – I recommend Igniting Your Life by John McCabe.
- Make sure to hydrate and carb up.
- Rest. You need to heal!
- Light candles. Play soothing music. Turn your home into a healing atmosphere.
- Sit around moping and feeling sorry for yourself.
- Compare yourself to others and assume everyone else is having the best time ever.
- Isolate and ignore emails and phone calls.
- Sit around analyzing your life.
- Focus only on what’s going wrong.
- Give up on moving your body at all.
- Enter a media coma.
- Think about all of the things you’re missing out on.