Mid-Week Balance: 13 March 2013

Hi folks.  We have made it two full weeks without a blizzard (not without snow, but without a blizzard) and that is pretty exciting for me at the moment!  That just goes to show that it doesn’t take much to adjust our expectations sometimes.  I have another giant-sized round-up for you this week.  I couldn’t help myself. There is just so much good stuff out there.  The first section is lots of posts about good self-care suggestions for life–especially life with serious illness.  The second section is actually about specific health challenges.

Good Stuff about Self-Care:

My colleague Dr. Allison Andrews generally works with parents of special needs children.  But her post this week on the importance of managing catastrophic thinking and practicing good self-care is one that transcends parenting.  Substitute caregiving, or living with illness for parenting, and this post applies to all of us.  Plus, I love it when mental health folks are brave enough to share with the world that we are human, we need self-care, and we struggle too.

In a similar vein, Leo Babauta of the Zen Habits blog writes consistently good stuff.  This post, about maintaining calm in the face of chaos, is a perfect fit for how we cope with minor and major disruptions in our lives.

Dr. Colleen Arnold has been sharing a ten-part series about the characteristics of happy people.  Last week’s trait was kindness, which reminded me of one my favorite quotes of all time (see image).

Sometimes, we get overwhelmed by the pressure we can put on ourselves (or experience from others) to be healthy.  This can be especially true when we are also coping with illness.  So, I really appreciate this post from Laura Schenck offering guidelines for a quick “quality of life” check-up.

Rosie Molinary also takes on the issue of self-care and self-acceptance in her post this week.  I like the way she breaks the post down into some of the struggles we have with the term “self-acceptance” and some no-nonsense definitions of how self-acceptance looks.

Good Stuff About Health and Illness:

Okay, my big deal is that physical health challenges carry a significant emotional load.  So, you can imagine how happy I was to see this post from oncologist Dr. Miranda Fielding, discussing how important it is for medical providers to ask about mental health issues during and after cancer treatment.  My only addition would be to say that this matters for all major medical challenges, not just cancer.

This post isn’t precisely about self-care, but Lisa Boncheck Adams has such a powerful way with words that I wanted to share.  I can imagine that many readers may be able to identify with her description of “quicksand.”

So many of my patients struggle with sleep concerns that I was happy to find this tool from Dr. Elisha Goldstein for applying mindfulness practice to sleep challenges.  You didn’t think that I’d let a MWB slide by without at least one mindfulness post, did you?

That’s it for me this week.  Please feel free to share favorite resources in the comments!



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