Coping with Pain, Physical Disability
and Chronic Illness
and Chronic Illness
After being injured or receiving a disturbing diagnosis, many adults are flooded with negative emotions: shock, denial, despair, anger, self-pity, uncertainty, worthlessness, uselessness, helplessness, loneliness, loss, guilt, vulnerability, and fear. Without psychological help, these emotions may persist. Cognitive-behavioral therapy, with its emphasis on teaching positive, flexible thinking and motivating healthy behaviors, is uniquely well-suited to examining the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors of these adults and transforming their emotional suffering into psychological growth.
If you’re a recently diagnosed adult, you may be overwhelmed with your many tasks:
· Understanding your diagnosis and prognosis
· Adjusting to treatment routines
· Acquiring adaptive equipment
· Modifying or changing your residence
· Adjusting family and work roles to your new capabilities, or to accommodate fatigue or a personal attendant
Even if you’ve been coping with the same physical challenges for many years, you might never have achieved a positive outlook, with a sense of optimism; hope for medical advances, cure, or remission; and valuing of remaining assets. Self-acceptance, serenity, and a sense of personal control are often attainable.
If your life expectancy is short, you may wish to focus on grieving losses, accepting death, healing conflicted relationships, leaving a positive legacy, and preparing others for their loss.
Counseling at Cognitive Behavior Therapy Center can help you achieve psychological goals such as to:
· Accept your new body and capabilities
· Maintain or enhance your sense of self-worth, basing it on unchanged qualities
· Replace shame with pride in your resilience, emotional courage, effort, and creativity
· Find positive new meaning, purpose, and goals
· Live fully despite uncertainty
· Manage stigma and overcome stereotypes
· Enhance assertiveness and activism
· Improve family connections
· Enlarge your social network to include those with similar challenges
· Resolve conflicts over dependency
· Revise the gifts you give to/get from others
· Minimize negative emotions
· Generate the energy, perseverance, and determination to persevere
· Find the flexibility and creativity to accomplish tasks in innovative ways
your best possible life!