Today, we have an article by guest author Jackie Waters from hyper-tidy.comÂ Jackie shares tips on keeping up with household chores. We all know how hard that can be!
Chronic pain can disrupt every part of life, from success at work to folding the laundry. For many chronic pain sufferers, home life is the first thing thatâ€™s let go when something has to give. But living with pain doesnâ€™t have to mean sacrificing happiness at home. If youâ€™re feeling like thereâ€™s too much to do, take a deep breath and try these methods for dealing with chronic pain at home.
Keep a Schedule
Routine is a valuable tool for people living with chronic pain. Depending on the severity of your pain, you could have difficulty concentrating and planning out each day. When you maintain routines, it feels easier to manage activities of daily living like dressing, cooking, and cleaning because you can do them on autopilot. It also helps you keep to-do items from piling up into an intimidating amount of work.
Establish a routine by setting realistic goals for tasks to accomplish each day. Create a weekly rotation and add in less-frequent chores as needed. Even if you donâ€™t work an eight-to-five job, wake up and go to sleep at a consistent time each day and maintain regular meal times. This gives you a basic framework so you can make progress even when youâ€™re not feeling your best. If you give in to your desire to do nothing on the bad days, responsibilities will pile up and youâ€™ll have to spend the good days attending to them.
While routine is helpful for managing home life, many chronic pain sufferers come to accept that their ideal standards of cleanliness arenâ€™t feasible. Pain means moving a little more slowly, and sometimes things donâ€™t play out how you planned. But pain doesnâ€™t have to mean giving up a clean, comfortable home.
Instead of settling for a less-than-ideal home, find ways to minimize your day-to-day responsibilities. While it requires some creativity, there are ways to scale back on any budget.
You may choose to pay for laundry service, buy a robotic vacuum cleaner, subscribe to a meal delivery service, or swap appliances and household electronics to systems you can control remotely.
Even on a modest budget, you can get your groceries delivered, opt for one-pot meals, use a continuous-release cleaner in the toilet, and set bills on auto-pay. Itâ€™s free to reduce the amount of clutter and stuff in your home, and it makes a huge difference in how much you have to tidy.
Another great option is hiring housekeeping help. This, too, can work with a variety of budgets. You can hire someone to visit just once a month to help with big tasks, or you can opt for a weekly or more frequent housekeeper.
Spend Time on Yourself
When you minimize your household responsibilities, you free up more time for self-care. Living with chronic pain is exhausting and stressful, and time to unwind is important for your mental and physical health.
Schedule time for yourself every day. Look for activities like stretching and meditative practices such as breathing exercises and yoga that promote mindfulness. Thereâ€™s evidence that mindfulness exercises are effective in easing chronic pain.
Part of taking care of yourself is giving proper attention to your most basic of needs. Try to get enough rest each night and practice good sleep hygiene to promote restful sleep. Avoid napping or too much caffeine if it impacts the quality of your sleep. Eat a whole foods diet focused on fresh fruits and vegetables, plant-based and lean animal proteins, fish, and whole grains. Avoid processed foods marketed for convenience, and instead find ways to eat simply but well.
Living with pain certainly adds challenges to life, but with a few smart strategies, you can make it a little bit easier.
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