Today’s guest Sue is the director of program development for the Fibromyalgia and Chronic Pain Center at California State University; best selling author on Amazon for chronic illness with her book FibroWHYalgia.
When Sue found her health going downhill for several years, totally out of control, she needed to know WHY. She dedicated herself to a tenacious research into the causes of chronic illness which led her on a journey to traditional and nontraditional healing methods which she now teaches to other people so that they take the short rout to healing.
Read today’s talk with Sue to find out:
Sue was a classic overachiever – always burning candle at both ends and in between being a mum and rushing around all the time. This combination can cause a timebomb that can tip the scales over to fibromyalgia.
At her worst, at under 40 Sue couldn’t walk without a cane. Doctors told her that next she would need a scooter chair. That was the ‘enough is enough’ moment where Sue made it her mission to find out:
a) What condition she had (this was in the 90’s when fibromyalgia wasn’t well known) and
b) Figure a way out of it.
Sue made a spreadsheet of all symptoms and flares and diagnosed herself with fibromyalgia. Then she got to work on the factors that *might* possibly help.
She started with nutrition first – (even though she didn’t think it would work.) Then as the results started to come in and her health improved, she moved on to fitness and finally then stress management and emotional wellness.
When you put together these three key factors, it’s a winning combination.
The big problem normally with treatment of fibromyalgia is when medications get prescribed – and then more medications get added on top of those – without getting to the root cause.
Once she started taking on the task herself of looking after her condition – the transformation was incredible – and now she has had to share it with everyone.
One major false belief about fibromyalgia is that it’s a progressive disease? Fibromyalgia isn’t progressive. However the effects of the lifestyle most people end up in when they have it is. If anyone was to not move for years – that will cause a decline in their health and the symptoms will get worse.
The big question people have then is how do you get moving without causing a flare in pain?
There’s a fine line – to challenge ourselves to move more – but be respectful of our health.
So that’s something we all need to work out for ourselves personally or with a coach. Especially since it’s very hard to motivate yourself to do that when you’re in pain. Getting a buddy, accountability partner or health coach can work wonders here.
These days Sue’s life is 90-95% pain free. She doesn’t have restrictions around what she can and can’t do other than the ones she chooses.
The biggest improvement though has been in emotional health and de-stressing. In Sue’s words:
“I used to believe ‘things are not measuring up to my expectations – and I’m to blame.’ Many people in chronic pain have this. They set expectations and even if they’re met – they move them higher.”
These days, Sue works with people with fibromyalgia. She helps them organise their nutrition, exercising and emotional health so that they can get back control over their lives and reduce their pain.
On Restoring Energy
“Hopelessness – is the biggest energy stealer you can have. So coffee, or other stimulants – there is no energy better than a sense of purpose, passion & future. Nothing can generate energy like that.”
On Lifestyle Changes
“I can tell people what to eat for 6 months. But the lasting change happens when they figure out what their beliefs about food, their life, and their job. When we work together – it’s everything. I’m so excited & grateful for what I do.”
On Dealing With Mindset & Emotional Blocks
“Once you wade through it – it’s so much better on the other side – and then you don’t have to deal with it again. And it just blooms & grows like mould. So it’s much better to dig it out & deal with it – and then be done with it.”
On Natural Healing
“The body is just waiting to heal when given half a chance. If you can learn to recognise all those negative thoughts that pop up. You can say ‘thank you, but I don’t need you right now.’ Move them off to the side.
And be grateful for that stillness in your mind. That will translate to a stillness & a release of at least temporary pain in the body.
So that’s a very hard thing to learn. I learned it through Tai Chi but you can get it walking outside in nature, grounding, standing barefoot – there’s a lot of ways to get ti because we’re all different. But that inner stillness is a very very amazing place to be and well worth teh practice it takes to get there.
So be kind to yourself.”
On the Root Causes of Fibromyalgia
“I’ve had men bring me their wives and say ‘fix them – I want them back the way they were.’ And I say ‘you don’t – because that’s the person who got sick. I’m going to give you your wife back as a 2.0 version. You don’t want her back the way she was because maybe she was a great server, but she wasn’t caring for herself – adn look what happened. We’re not going to go there again.”
Work with Sue? Click here to find out more…
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