Are you recovering from a chronic condition? Do you have enough emotional support? Coping with a chronic illness can be an emotional journey. Whether it is cancer, diabetes, substance addiction, or depression, people tend to experience a wide range of emotions. There are ways to get additional emotional support.
The Importance of Emotional Support and Well-Being During Recovery
From getting a diagnosis of a chronic condition, and understanding the illness, to managing the day-to-day treatment of a disease, you may have experienced an emotional roller coaster. These are certainly stressful life events that produce a flood of overwhelming emotions.
Yet, for many people, emotional well-being has been the most neglected aspect of their health. They have been so preoccupied with the physical side of recovery that emotional health may seem trivial, even though it is essential to long-term recovery. For example, certain diagnoses and treatments may bring feelings of guilt and shame. These emotions can undermine the self-motivation to recover.
With every chronic condition, there is always a sense of grief and loss. You may need to go through various stages of grief, including denial, bargaining, anger, and depression. Some people avoid facing the fact that they have a chronic condition. When you suffer emotionally, it will negatively impact the whole body’s functioning.
Building Emotional Strength
The best way to cope with a chronic condition is to face it head-on. How do you do that? You can begin by asking questions. Write down all your questions about the condition and your emotional responses during recovery. Take these questions and notes to your health provider to discuss.
Most health professionals understand the complexity of emotions and try to care for them while providing treatment. You may consult with them on how to build emotional strength during this long journey. There are specific self-care steps you can take to feel emotionally strong and empowered.
Self-Care Techniques for Emotional Wellness
Although people tend to feel a loss of control over life after being diagnosed with a chronic condition, there are many aspects of your life that are within your own control. You can choose to practice better self-care, such as eating healthy meals, keeping your medical appointments, and maintaining a healthy exercise and sleep schedule, etc.
Other effective emotional self-care techniques include keeping a recovery journal. You can write down everything about how you feel each day. Use this space for expressing yourself. Over time, you can track what situations tend to create stress and emotional burden for you.
Because the brain is in charge of regulating emotions, you can practice some activities that help the brain heal and restore the mind-body connection. Examples are yoga and mindfulness meditation. Both have been proven effective in producing a calming effect.
Finding Extra Emotional Support
There are always other ways to find extra support if you need it. Reach out to family and friends about your emotional struggles. Simply having a listener who can hear and understand you can be greatly uplifting. There are also peer support groups to join. You will find people with similar experiences. These conversations in a safe space will help you combat isolation.
Many people recovering from chronic conditions also seek emotional support in keeping a pet or animal-assisted therapy. Animals such as cats, dogs, and horses are the most common emotional support partners. By caring for them, feeding them, and walking outside with them, you will feel needed and supported.
What to Avoid During Recovery
If you experience emotional struggles during recovery, there are also things you should avoid. For example, the use of drugs or alcohol will only provide temporary relief. These substances are actually depressants that make you feel worse.
Try not to isolate yourself when feeling emotionally unwell. Solitude can be calming, but isolating can create much emotional stress. You can distract yourself by doing some activities that used to bring you joy. Art-making and craft-making are known to provide motivation and relief from depressive moods.
You would also need to avoid interacting with difficult personalities during recovery. This does not mean that you cut them off from your life. You need to first take care of yourself and then work on these relationships. Create some space for you to not take in additional stress.
Building a Strong Support System
Every person recovering from a chronic health condition needs a support team. These are people who provide medical expertise or positive energy around you. You can invite trusted family members to support you. Discuss with them how they can support you emotionally.
Your needs may change as you live with a chronic illness. When you experience major changes in school, work, or family life, make sure you always have the support of health experts, whether it is counseling or specific treatments. It is okay to re-enter treatment if that is needed.
When you are in recovery from a chronic condition, you must learn effective techniques to improve your emotional health and well-being. There are practical ways to achieve emotional wellness. Mindfuli helps you become a strong practitioner in emotional wellness. Here, you will find that our experienced mental health professionals and compassionate staff know the value of positive support networks. Whether you need to distance yourself from unhealthy habits or relearn self-care methods for success, we can help. We integrate clinical and holistic healing methods. Do not bottle up or avoid expressing emotions. Call (866) 973-4415 to discover how you can be part of our strong recovery community that values emotional health.