Changing Ways of Being for a Happier Healthier Life with ME/CFS

Dealing with this illness effectively didn’t just involve learning new skills, but involved me learning completely new ways of being. This wasn’t easy because my old ways of being have had years to develop and be reinforced. First, I had to see the benefits and believe that the new ways of being would work for me, then I had to commit to practising them. They were soon reinforced by their positive results when I remembered to put them into place. These are some of the new ways of being I have found most helpful, some of which I still have to pay attention to cultivate, others now, already come more naturally.

  • Being relaxed and effortless
  • Being accepting of my bodies limits in the moment
  • Being committed to noticing when my energy is getting low and to stopping before it runs out
  • Being committed to taking responsibility for optimising my health
  • Being willing to assertively communicate my needs to those who need to understand them
  • Being joyful and willing to notice the joy that is always all around me
  • Being confident in my value and willing to receive help, support and love.
  • Being trusting that this gentle, joyful, relaxed way of being will be enough to make life work for me

Knowing how you want to be isn’t always enough though. Sometimes we also need to focus on challenging the things that get in the way of being how we want to be. The following are some very natural obstacles to cultivating helpful ways of being. How many of these can you relate to?

  • Forceful determination to overcome. Being committed to better health isn’t a bad thing as long as we can replace forcefulness with relaxed effortlessness.
  • Lack of understanding of what you need by those around you. Being pushed beyond your limits or your illness not being accepted. We often don’t get the information we need that will help us manage our illness appropriately. Even when we do discover what we need there can still be others around us pushing us to be different.
  • Not wanting to let people down or be a burden.
  • Not accepting that the way you spend time with people needs to change, and that means they have to adjust to your situation too. Not feeling worthy enough to expect others to adapt to your needs.
  • Wanting others to take all responsibility for making your health better.
  • Believing that your emotions are all about what’s happening to you and not about how you choose to deal with it
  • Worries about essential things not getting done
  • Feeling you have to be productive to be worthy
  • Boredom, not knowing how to have fun without energy
  • Feeling better and wanting to make the most of the opportunity to have fun

If any of these points are still a challenge for you, don’t worry, in a way its good news. These are all areas where different choices can be made; new ways of being can be learned! Recognising them brings you an opportunity to grow and hopefully improve your health. What could you do to challenge your obstacles to a happy, healthy way of being?

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New ways of  being that will help you life a happier healthier life with ME/CFS

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