“When you switch the lens and heal your mind of negativity, it actually helps heal your body of exhaustion, aches, and pains.” – Frank Lipman
The biggest barrier to recovering from back pain often isn’t your back; it’s your mind. After suffering from back pain for some time, you may start limiting yourself to what you think you can do, but what you are actually able to do could be more than you think.
If You Think You Can’t, You Can’t
We see many people who think that they cannot get up without assistance, yet they can do the same movement on an exercise ball. Those patients have convinced themselves that they couldn’t do something, so they stopped trying. For that reason, we strongly encourage people to get back moving as soon as they can that way you don’t start preventing yourself from recovering.
Move a little bit more each day. Start by walking around inside if you are currently not leaving the bed. Then take a short walk outside, even if it is just to the mailbox. Continue to add small distances, even just steps or feet, until you are regularly walking for 20 or 30 minutes daily. If you prove to yourself that you can accomplish more than you believed possible, you won’t get into a mental rut.
When you aren’t able to move very far, it can be difficult to interact with others. The isolation that often comes when you are dealing with severe pain can be as debilitating as the pain itself. Make a plan to connect with family or friends outside of the home. Even short visits can make a world of difference in your emotional health.
Chronic pain can cause depression and in turn, worsen your situation. Getting moving again and connecting with people can really help. If you are looking for more information about the small changes you can make every day, we recommend reading the book Revive by Dr. Frank Lipman.