[Updated: 10/14/21 with new research link.]
People with chronic pain often do too much when they’re having good days and not
enough when they’re having bad days.
Pacing/moderation has become a common tool for people living with pain to help provide them with balance. It includes setting time limits, slowing down (start low, go slow), breaking up tasks, and taking frequent short breaks.
But be careful not to let pacing become an excuse for not being active or avoiding pain. Doing so can add more focus to the pain, worsen symptoms, and reduce physical stamina.
Pain doesn't mean harm. It's the result of an overly-protective system trying to protect itself. Our bodies become over-sensitized.
Pacing should instead be used to gradually increase what we can do, despite the pain.
The difference is in the goal and execution. Keep moving forward!
Learn more and do more
One of the tools we learned at the Mayo Pain Rehabilitation Center was goal setting. We set goals each day. They didn't have to be massive, but they had to be SMART - specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound.
I have set the following goals for me this week:
What are your goals this week?
This article may be helpful to you when drafting your goals.
Chronic Pain Champions is an information resource/blog/support group to help chronic pain patients, their families, and friends, as well as healthcare professionals. Learn more about this site and the author.
Chronic Pain Champions