Nourishing vs depleting activities: a pacing strategy

One of the first approaches to pacing that I had some success with was alternating between nourishing and depleting activities. The basic principle is that some activities use up our energy and others allow us to feel restored. The metaphor that’s often used in CBT is that of a phone battery that drains while it… Continue reading Nourishing vs depleting activities: a pacing strategy

What is Compassion Focused Therapy?

Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) is an offshoot of CBT.  It was designed for people with high levels of self-criticism or shame.   It is supposed to be helpful for people who can reason against their fears or beliefs but who find that their feelings don’t change. The theory behind CFT is that we have evolved a… Continue reading What is Compassion Focused Therapy?

Do I have intrinsic value?

The intrinsic value of something is said to be the value that that thing has “in itself,” or “for its own sake,” or “as such,” or “in its own right.” – Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy Being chronically ill has really shaken my self-confidence.  My counsellor introduced the idea that I have intrinsic value.  She suggested that… Continue reading Do I have intrinsic value?

Making the most of small pleasures

“Whatever else there is, there’s this as well” – Maitreyabandhu1 It’s hard being ill, I have lost so much and there’s so much I can’t do.  This drags down my mood and my well-being.  There’s also a lot of physical discomfort too. I first came across the idea of deliberately looking for the pleasurable aspects of… Continue reading Making the most of small pleasures

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Everyday Heroics

Everyday heroics is not pushing yourself to go further and faster.  It’s not about battling against your circumstances, whatever the cost.  It’s not about insisting on living life as you did before. It’s getting up and starting another day, even though yesterday sucked, and so did the day before it.  It’s finding the courage to face… Continue reading Everyday Heroics

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Worry Time

By life has been full of terrible misfortunes, most of which never happened” Michael de Montaigne I have always been something of a worrier.  I was okay with that and sometimes found it useful as I’d make extra effort to rehearse something in advance or think through what might go wrong. But now I have a… Continue reading Worry Time

Getting adjustments in place at college or university

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I was one year into my PhD when my chronic illness surfaced.  It has been and continues to be a huge adjustment.  I’ve had to learn new ways of organising my work, of doing the basics like writing, reading and researching for my degree.  All this alongside managing my symptoms, looking after myself generally and… Continue reading Getting adjustments in place at college or university