Have you ever watched the movie “Kill Bill 2”?
Do you remember the scene in which Beatrix Kiddo desperately tries to wiggle her toes?
Well, that is kind of what I go through… EVERY. SINGLE. MORNING!!
As I mentioned in my last post, I have a chronic illness in my peripheral nerve system and it has affected my muscles too. Physically speaking, I do have some limitations; I can’t move anything below my knees for example, but my body adapted and I can still walk on my own ( Yeah, I know… You are probably wondering how the hell can I walk when I am muscularly paralysed below the knees?! Well, welcome to the club :D )
But I guess what I am trying to say here is, I face new physical limitations on a daily base, waking up not knowing which muscle would suddenly become really hard to move today.. that small moment right there gets me so frustrated! It is like I have no control over my body and losing that control frustrates me, but it wasn’t too long till I knew I had to change my mindset and find ways to stop being frustrated by my limitations! So, here are my 5 ways to stop being frustrated by your limitations:
1. PUT LIFE INTO PERSPECTIVE
I know that sometimes we - amazing people with chronic illnesses- tend to crawl into our bubble, feeling sorry for what we have lost. Trust me, I know how it feels like! I had that feeling, day in day out - for over a year- until I decided to put my life into perspective :) I started implementing this positive psychology technique into my life, started to be grateful for the things I have in my life, focusing on the things I can still do like the ability to listen to great music, the ability to see breathtaking sunsets, to hang out with friends and just be grateful for living.
2. SCHEDULE ACTION! TODAY!
I know that sounds a bit strange, but if you don’t plan and schedule daily actions in order to cope and deal with your situation, it would be as if you are just waiting and hoping that something will miraculously change. Well, you know better than I do that the change must first come from within. Your actions don’t have to be big at all, it could be as simple as waking up, taking a cold morning shower to start the day, eat lunch, go for a walk ( or a swim) or anything else that would help you deal with this adversity. Meet friends. Laugh as hard as you can, exercise, meditate and start accepting the new you.
3. FIND SOMEONE WHO HAS BEEN WHERE YOU ARE & SUCCEEDED
I cannot begin to stress out how important it is to have a role model to look up to and see how they managed to rise up to the challenge that they were facing, I cannot begin to stress out how important it is to surround yourself with people who are dealing/ have dealt with a frustrating situation and succeed in not letting their limitation frustrate them. When I was younger, I started watching endless motivational videos and work on my mental strength. But then, as I got older, I was exposed and introduced to amazing people who are dealing with different illnesses and limitations, yet have succeeded and are rocking it now!! ( Yes…I am talking about you, Emily :D) Having that someone who has been where you are, who knows what it's like to be frustrated about something, but refused to let it define them, who decided to turn that tragedy into triumph, look up to them and learn and start implementing what they did to come to terms with their illness.
4. HAVE CONFIDENCE THAT YOU WILL FIGURE THIS OUT & RISE UP
I am not talking about regular confidence, the kind that comes in and says “Oh, I am confident!” No, I want you to understand that you’ve got to have confidence that You. Will. Get. Over. This!… Having a belief in your ability to figure it out, that to me is real, genuine confidence.
Also, one more thing you need to know, in order to avoid being sucked into negativity, you have to frame your limitation and adversity and have a belief that you will Rise Up to this challenge and that no matter what, you will figure this out!
5. HONOUR THE STRUGGLE
Sometimes the struggle is put there for us to get better. Just know that your struggle, the one you are going through right now… Know that it is necessary at this moment and that you got to deal with it, you can’t just simply avoid and ignore it. The struggle deserves to be honored and processed, and once we are done with processing it we need to understand that we have the power to change and influence our attitude towards it. We must forge meaning from our biggest struggles.
I would have had an easier life if I were normal, but I would not be me, and I now like being myself better than the idea of being someone else, someone who, to be honest, I have neither the option of being nor the ability fully to imagine.
“Therefore, I take pleasure in infirmities,” St. Paul wrote in Second Corinthians, “for when I am weak, then I am strong.
About the author:
Lian is an international public speaker, with tours in Germany, the UK and USA, in which she discusses the image of Israel in the International Media and raise awareness to minority issues in the Middle East.