Episode notes: Today Ruth continues and finishes her talk about rehab options that we all have before us and what we choose to do. If you listen to nothing else... listen to this!
Ruth is a stroke survivor sharing tips and advice for rehab, recovery and healthy living including nutrition, exercises, personal care, healing and maintaining a grateful attitude. She can be found online at http://stroke.global were she offers help to stroke survivors and caregivers.
Welcome back to the Healthy Life Podcast... A few days ago we spent time assessing what we wanted fixed and yesterday we talked about building a plan and setting aside time to act on that plan... today we’re going to address the actual execution of our plan and setting up and using rewards.
Before we get to the plan I want to take a few minutes to talk about rewards. Rewards are similar to getting paid for something...If you aren’t paid... most people will choose not to work. In other words, they expect compensation, pay or a reward for their work. Case in point... I’m not paid for what I do... does that make me odd or weird... no I’m rewarded in other ways... I’m rewarded when people heal, improve, get movement and function back.... so reward in this case is the equivalent for pay but the “compensation” or “reward” comes in a different form.
You see... In all that I do I have my own system of rewards... things that I give or allow myself for attaining certain goals or milestones... treats as it were. It could be... articles of clothing, special foods, treats, desserts, dinner out, a movie, book, magazine, a “techie” gadget... any number of things. You need to establish your own reward system for accomplishing things and as a result you are unintentionally setting up “milestones” or markers to help you in defining and seeing progress. When I had young boys in scouts ... even there ... they worked to obtain badges. So the reality is ...that we need things to provide us with inner motivation (motive in action)... we’re accustomed to having an official or unofficial rewards when we accomplish things and this is no different.
Yesterday when I outlined the 7 steps to success I was speaking from over 20+ years of service and experience. I have found that those 7 steps need to be followed habitually on a daily basis. The reason I mention these prior to talking about our plan is that they (these steps) are the glue that holds everything together... the mortar to the bricks that make up our plan. Too often we are focused on the “bricks” (the big things). like mobility and movements and we tend to lead with those things and push ourselves and when we don’t get what we want... we complain... give up... or both. I can’t tell you the numbers of times and people that have complained about languishing and not reaching goals.
The reason the first step is an entry into the Attitude of Gratitude Journal is because a positive mental attitude is required for any meaningful restoration. That’s why I mentioned an accountability partner yesterday. There will be times when we’re tired and have doubts... that’s when we read part of our journal entries and get positive reinforcement from our accountability partner!
The next thing we need to be faithful to monitor are our vitals... daily and log them. This not only keeps us informed, it’s a great record if your doctor needs it. It also acts as a monitor to your overall level of health and potential medication side effects and effectiveness. Now you’ll note that all this is done prior to any planned activities and/or exercise. Not that activities and/or exercise are unimportant... but actually secondary!
Now you can focus on activities and/or exercises, dependent upon your plan the exercises will either be physical or mental. Now you will hear a big suggestion from me... only spend 30 minutes on exercise or activities. You can repeat them later (up to 3X/day) but no more. Our bodies and our brains tire much more easily and we want to maintain excitement and enthusiasm... both of which will wane If your progress is not commensurate with your expectations. This is where it is so important to understand that more is not better... it’s only more... and often detrimental to true healing and progress.
This is where you must integrate a reward system. You have to have appropriate expectations and understand that slow and accurate is much better than fast and sloppy. Walking, for instance, requires bending of joints. I actually have people practice lunges that mainly involve the ankle movements. To be honest I see many people who have been pushed and rely on an AFO rather than strengthening muscles and taking things a bit slower. I spend a lot of time un-training and retraining... it’s frightening to think about all the bad habits that are encouraged that ultimately lead to joint damage and surgery. Take the time! Do it right! As one who worked in surgery with surgeons for years I can honestly say maintaining our bodies as designed is far better than scar tissue from repairs.
The last three steps are relaxation, diet, and podcasts... it is so important to our overall health to practice relaxation techniques 6 to 8 times a day to keep our BP and stress levels low. Another critical choice is monitoring the foods that fuel our body and the oxalate content. I must confess I was surprised to discover that I could impact gallstones and reverse their growth dietarily... I even have ultrasound evidence! And the final step you are already doing, that of listening to these podcasts... it’s good to stay informed and increase our knowledge together.
Well it’s that time...Thanks so much for joining me as we learned more about our options and ways to insure success in our rehab....... join us next week as we learn more our bodies. Remember to visit the stroke.global web site often and give us feedback!... I also hope you’ll join us tomorrow! As always it’s an honor and a pleasure sharing today.... thank you! I pray that you’ve enjoyed this podcast... we keep it brief so it’s easy to add to your day... we are on iTunes, Spreaker, & Google Play and have links on our stroke.global page... please subscribe it boosts us in the ratings and helps us rise in the ranks so we can to continue these stroke survivor podcasts.
As always we want to thank our sponsor TCM Restoration for helping us by making this podcast possible. Check them out online at tcmrestoration.net
And thank you again for listening... Please feel free to share this podcast with others, offer your feedback and questions, and follow us online at our website stroke.global or on our Facebook page. Well... I look forward to learning more with you next week... as we continue our adventure ...