We’re human, right? That usually means that we, as humans, make mistakes. When we do inevitably slip up, or not have something go as planned, our rational, thinking brain should tell us to simply pick ourselves back up and move on.
If you got a flat tire driving down the freeway you’d pull over to the side of the road safely. Get out of your car and assess the damaged tire then fix it. After you’d then get back in your car and back on the road to your destination. A rational response to a potential crisis, right?
You wouldn’t get out, see the flat, and then go pop the other 3 tires! Living with IBD means potential flares and potential mini-crisis are possible all too often. While these occasions can be frustrating, scary, and annoying they also serve as potential moments of opportunity. Each “flat tire” is a chance to fix something, to repair yourself, and get back on the road.
Whether the “flat tire” is missing a special event because we’re just too fatigued, dealing with ostomy bag maintenance, or simply readjusting our lives to better cope and manage with a chronic illness you would be better served to remember that all you can do – all any person could do – is to find ways to manage the situation as best as possible.
- We can improve how we view situations (improved mindset)
- We can improve how we view foods by finding healthier options that fit our needs and digestive capabilities (improved nutrition)
- We can improve how we move by practicing daily movement drills that are fun and enjoyable (improved strength)
None of the above examples require perfection. Some “flat tires” require professional assistance, maybe your proverbial tow-truck driver (aka doctor) needs to be called. Some “flat tires” can be patched up with simpler fixes. Either remedy allows for the opportunity to practice searching for improvements, not perfection.
Simple, daily practice is all that’s needed. Be ok and happy with your imperfections. Our “flat tires” or imperfections offer us the greatest opportunities to enjoy our improvements.
Ask yourself if you’ve been “popping your other three tires”. If so consider not doing that in the future. Instead, ask how you could refocus on improvement instead of perfection.