Making Peace with the unwanted companion “Fibromyalgia”

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A flurry of emotions arise when confronted with a life changing diagnosis, among them are fear, sadness, anger, frustration and grief. Each person handles these emotions in different ways and at varying points in the healing process. Ideally, the goal is to work towards acceptance. For someone with Fibromyalgia or any other chronic condition, acceptance may be difficult to achieve.

How can one accept that life as they knew it, likely will change? It’s difficult to grasp. Acceptance doesn’t mean giving up, as some may think. Acceptance involves learning to live one’s life without allowing your diagnosis to take control. This doesn’t mean that the medical conditions or the limitations it might impose disappear; it means that one has learned how to live their life in spite of these limitations.

Unlike acute ailments like a short-lived flu or pneumonia, fibromyalgia is a chronic condition and presents ongoing challenges; those include fatigue that takes away your energy and energy to do the things you would usually do, as well as unbearable fibromyalgia pain to come to terms with. Fibromyalgia involves an imbalance of brain chemicals that makes the entire body hypersensitive.

Because pain, fatigue, and other fibromyalgia symptoms such as depression and sleep problems are so crippling, people suffering from fibromyalgia need to go through a significant attitudinal shift in order to move forward with their lives. Despite the pain and the fibro fog; the inability to sleep and the isolation; a fibromyalgia patient can undertake helpful steps to manage their chronic pain and regain happiness.

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For people with fibromyalgia, a large part of making peace with their condition involves finding effective coping mechanisms. Besides medications, here’s what else may help:

Getting support from others with fibromyalgia

Support groups are enormously helpful for anybody with chronic pain, predominantly fibromyalgia pain. People with fibromyalgia look ‘normal’ on the outside, so it means a lot to spend time with people who truly understand what you’re going through.

The power of the gratitude journal

Start keeping a daily gratitude journal. This is an easy exercise that anybody can do, writing every day five things to be thankful for. Gratitude means appreciating what you have and making the most from that. Gratitude is not about “looking at the brilliant side” or ignoring the facts of life.

Gratitude goes much deeper than that. It’s about learning from circumstances, enchanting the good to assist in dealing with other challenges in the future. It’s about finding out that you have more power over your life than you previously imagined. You can stop being a victim of your circumstances and reach out to the joy in living.

If you open your heart to the good things in your life and welcome them, gratitude becomes as much a part of your life as mouthful of air. Focusing on the good in your life and putting these thoughts on paper each day allow you to see that you had much to be grateful for. And that you could have a good life with FMS.

Dealing with stress and finding joy

Some people with fibromyalgia respond well to relaxation techniques such as meditation. You should meditate and make time to laugh, try all sorts of hot teas, and use colorful stickers on your calendar to track your fibromyalgia symptoms. Every person needs to find things to cheer them, even during bad flare-ups. There are no magic answers, but there is plenty of happiness left after a fibromyalgia diagnosis.

Benefits of acceptance

There are many benefits of acceptance of FMS. You take better care of yourself. Your health is a top priority. When you feel better, everything in your life works better. Your life becomes more predictable, less of a roller coaster ride. With proper exercise, rest, and activity pacing, you are giving your body the gift of healing. Your body relaxes when you are not fighting with it, and you feel better. You also gain more confidence in yourself and in dealing with people. By accepting your illness, you feel less of a need to explain, rationalize, and fret over what others think.

Engaging in right physical activity

Low to reasonable aerobic workout at least twice a week with some power training built in can be really supportive for fibromyalgia. Yoga is also helpful for some. Because fibromyalgia pain and other symptoms are so individual, exercise programs have to be customized. Gentle stretching and yoga also helped relieve your fibromyalgia pain.

Time management

Time management and organization help avoid the stress of fibro fog. Set aside a time to arrange each week’s calendar, and keep it visible so fibro fog doesn’t result in missing an appointment or deadline. This will greatly reduce stress because what needs to be accomplished is always in view. Ask management, or time chunking, is especially helpful for fibromyalgia patients. Blocking off adequate time for chores, cooking, exercise, and rest will prevent these activities from piling up and overwhelming you.

Starting therapy

One type of treatment that has been shown to be predominantly accommodating for fibromyalgia is cognitive behavioral therapy. CBT gives you insights on optimistic behaviors for your lifestyles and opinion on attitude that might not be the finest for your fibromyalgia symptoms. Becoming friends with your pain starts with forgiving yourself. Pain is difficult to live with and it takes a long time to make peace with it but it is not impossible.


  • How I Created a Good Life with Fibromyalgia  By Joan Buchman via CFIDS and Fibromyalgia Self Help
  • Making Peace with fibromyalgia via Fibro Daily

For support and Discussion join the group “Living with Fibromyalgia and Chronic Illness”

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