List of lifestyle changes that have made your lives easier

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Hope4Sofia, Feb 17, 2006.

  1. Hope4Sofia

    Hope4Sofia New Member

    Hey everyone!

    I was wondering if we could make a list of changes we have made to improve our quality of life.

    Some of the changes I have made are...

    Changing my shoes to very soft comfortable shoes.

    Lightening my purse load and buying a smaller lighter purse.

    I've started taking little rests or naps through-out the day (even in my car in a safe parking lot).

    Cut out the sugar! Has helped a lot with the sugar crashes.

    Taking a small baggie of nuts with me to help with the hypoglycemia.

    I have not cut the one cup of coffee out/day since I seem to need it badly. When I try to go without I get a bad headach, nauseous, and zero energy.

    I could use advice on...

    How to keep up with the household stuff - bills are a big one! I feel like I'm dropping the ball.

    Managing the overwhelmed feeling.

    Keeping up with the kids school stuff.

    I'd love to hear what the rest of you have done to make your lives easier.

    sofi
  2. NyroFan

    NyroFan New Member

    Sofi:
    I rest on a heating pad most days. I take it easy and let things just slide when I am having a bad day. I do not feel obligated to do things since my divorce. I can do what I what when I want to: no obligations.

    Although my marriage broke up over these DDs, I have managed better. I know not everyone with these problems can do this, but I just could not do it anymore with a husband who just did not understand.

    I believe in good rest.

    Hugs,
    NyroFan
  3. romey

    romey New Member

    Hey,

    these are a few things i've changed in my lifetyle to make it easier for me to live with FM :

    I use mini backpacks now instead of shoulder bags because it makes the weight in the bag feel more even on my back with the support of two straps.

    I only wear strapless bras now. that was a big one it's made a huge diffrence to the everyday sholuder pain and neck pain that I feel.

    I snack on nuts alot now aswell, and I've cut down hugely on my sugar intake and it makes me feel alot lighter.

    personally i can't say enough for herbal tea, it took me a very long while to get used to it and i'd advise anybody switching from normal tea or coffee to herbal teas to start with green tea because as far as i know it has a very small amount of caffine.

    I get the feeling of being complety overwelmed alot aswell, and although it dosen't help phyiscally when i have to do some thing i find writng down all the frustration i'm feeling in my notebook helps me from freaking out complety!

    i hopes that helps!

    hugs,
    Romey

  4. tngirl

    tngirl New Member

    Just like the rest of you--I lightened my purse!
    I can't stand anything heavy on my shoulders!

    I work at a desk--I try to make myself get up and walk around periodically.

    I take a break and lie down (it gets the kinks out of my back)

    One of the ways I lightened my purse was paying for someone to clean my house! I decided to cut back on other things to pay for it.

    I no longer cook every evening. My family just had to get used to it! They've been very good not to complain about it. I get carry-out or we eat sandwiches or something easy.

    I actually get some exercise now! That was a major lifestyle change for me. It's been almost a year since I have been exercising regularly. The key way starting
    s l o w l y. I'm sorry to say I never have actually liked to exercise, probably never will like it, but I like the results!
  5. Lolalee

    Lolalee New Member

    I can really relate to the things that a lot of people have said, especially msmoody.

    Seems like this illness has made me a better person and a more peaceful one too. At least, once I accepted it and wasn't fighting it and pushing myself.

    Proof that overdoing it will hurt you....I traveled and spent 5 days with my 4 grandchildren and 1 day with old friends. Drove home (husband drove, of course, not me) 12 hours in car yesterday. Today I feel worse than ever. I've spent all day in bed and when I got out to look at flowers that are coming up in yard, I couldn't make to the entire yard. rest rest rest
    is essential
  6. elastigirl

    elastigirl New Member

    ... to reduce external stress.

    I set my phone ring volume to the lowest setting so I won't wake up during a nap.

    I set my cell phone to "silent profile" which actually can be customized to beep -- a single, quiet beep -- no rousing music. I keep the cell phone at my desk in case someone is trying to reach me online, but it no longer wakes me from a nap.

    If I'm ordering online and have the option, I'll leave a comment for the delivery person, "Okay to leave on porch," (mine is hidden) so they don't knock. This has really worked.

    Another thing is ordering essentials online instead of confronting a store. I have a problem with excessive thirst/having to visit the bathroom frequently (not anxiety-related,) so it can get really stressful trying to run errands. I've tried to slide as many errands as possible to the internet.
  7. lovethesun

    lovethesun New Member

    2.I use a picker upper(what's the name?)but I don't overdue.

    3.Rest even though I don't think I need too.

    4.I always have a water bottle near by and drink from it all day(Ireally notice if I don't get enough water

    5.My husband brings me breakfast every morning .(I couldn't resist this hint,even though it is so I don't have to tackle stairs until the meds kick in.

    6.I haven't totally cut out white sugar but I use Splenda for everything and am considering Stevia.

    7.I use the small 12 in one purses because it is light and can go over your head when you use a walker or wheelchair
  8. karebear70

    karebear70 New Member

    Get a 'swiffer' the kind that has the vacuum and mop in one, just vac, squirt and mop then throw out the dirty pad. even if you just get a regular swiffer and even if you are too screwed up to sweep just push it to the wall and get it some other time. I don't know how debilitated you are, but i have CFIDS and i can barely get around my apartment some days because of being weak and ill. I am mainly housebound and can't even drive anymore.
    'Clorox' makes this awsome disinfecting wipes in a pop top container, wipe and throw away! PAPER PLATES! plastic ware, paper cups.
    Basically though my house is messy, and cluttered, i just can't keep it up. I tell myself if we have clean clothes to put on and belly's are fed then the rest will have to be let go. if i am having a decent day where i could get it taken care of 1: i waste a blessing of a day cleaning. 2: it will just be trashed in 2 days anyway 3: I could send my self into another crash. None of these are worth it. As for coping..uggh I am not too good at that, i pray alot for God to take me out of this and heal me. I try to keep the hope that there is a chance i can recover, even if just improve. i DON'T know, so i try to lean toward the positive, though it is getting harder since its been over a year i've had this and i am just getting more homebound and my symptoms are getting more intense and i have wayyy more bad days than good like i used to. I find just coming to the boards for support is all i can really do as far as connecting with people like me.
    karen
  9. karebear70

    karebear70 New Member

    Get a 'swiffer' the kind that has the vacuum and mop in one, just vac, squirt and mop then throw out the dirty pad. even if you just get a regular swiffer and even if you are too screwed up to sweep just push it to the wall and get it some other time. I don't know how debilitated you are, but i have CFIDS and i can barely get around my apartment some days because of being weak and ill. I am mainly housebound and can't even drive anymore.
    'Clorox' makes this awsome disinfecting wipes in a pop top container, wipe and throw away! PAPER PLATES! plastic ware, paper cups.
    Basically though my house is messy, and cluttered, i just can't keep it up. I tell myself if we have clean clothes to put on and belly's are fed then the rest will have to be let go. if i am having a decent day where i could get it taken care of 1: i waste a blessing of a day cleaning. 2: it will just be trashed in 2 days anyway 3: I could send my self into another crash. None of these are worth it. As for coping..uggh I am not too good at that, i pray alot for God to take me out of this and heal me. I try to keep the hope that there is a chance i can recover, even if just improve. i DON'T know, so i try to lean toward the positive, though it is getting harder since its been over a year i've had this and i am just getting more homebound and my symptoms are getting more intense and i have wayyy more bad days than good like i used to. I find just coming to the boards for support is all i can really do as far as connecting with people like me.
    karen
  10. sues1

    sues1 New Member

    I have done most of what has been posted so far. Favorite is my long handled grippers to pick up things or get things that are high up. I do NOT allow myself to stand on something that is not stable...IE: a soft topped foot stool and such......we are not cordinated anymore!

    I have two round baskets of paper plates, larger and smaller ones, on top of refrig. Hubby really uses them for snacks and heat ups.....I bless him!

    I have a thick tablet that is spiral ringed at the side.
    First Page is JANUARY 2006 Second page FEB. 2006,,,,,etc.
    I list EVERYTHING that has to be paid monthly and any other bills they have their own line......

    When I write checks I put beside each...the date/check number and amount paid......and check it off at the beginning of the line....

    Nice to refer back to for tax time or to see if you did pay something...or when a magazine subscription or club fee (etc.) will come up.

    Our water bill only comes every three months....but I write water on every month......so I will not forget it when it really is due...I just put a check mark in front of water for months that I do not have to pay it.

    Back of same page....I write month and year at the top....that page is for medical and prescriptions and such.

    That might not be necessary for you..but it is for us.....customize it for yourself...

    It gives me freedom...as I know I have not forgotten anything....I can relax and that feels good......I do not have to go through check book looking anymore and trying to see if I paid something.

    Gt a large plastic basket, maybe for a dollar....your bills will stand up sideways in it....and you can add a book of stamps, some envelopes to it and keep by your bill book.(Or keep bill book in it).

    I also dress for comfort....shoes also.....it makes a difference. You can still look okay and feeling okay is even better.

    I have three wigs.....LOL....needed really as my hair has really thinned. I am ready to go and look nice..if your hair looks good...you look good and feel good.

    Extra salt and pepper on the table, no need to reach and pass back and forth. Extra boxes of Kleenex around. Lots of small wastebasket...the wicker ones that are meant for potted plants look nice in livingroom/rec. room, etc Keep a plastic bag in it for quick emptying. Keep extra bags at bottom of same basket.

    LAST (as I could go on too long) is just because you always did it "that way".....does not mean you have to continue doing it that way. Rethink things....make things simplier. Some of what we do is because that is what our Mom's did and it is habit......make a game of seeing what you can change to make things simplier.....relax and enjoy...
    Blessings to all..........Susan

  11. sydneysider

    sydneysider Member

    I use some of the above, and also discuss ways of doing things easier with friends. It's surprising the ideas that other people have that I have never thought about.

    I buy only easy to care for clothes.

    I stick to only cooking food that is easy to prepare.

    I use plastic folders, (in different colors) with clear plastic sleeves, for all my paperwork. One for payed bills, one for tax, one for bank accounts etc. This idea was told to me by a friend, and I find it brilliant. I am able to find any papers with just a quick flick.

    I file mail as soon as it comes, and keep the bills to be payed in a separate pile, and then file as soon as they are payed. I note the due dates on a calender as soon as they arrive.

    Lists can be useful. If you need to do something, and cannot remember all the steps, then list the steps one under the other.

    I try to simplify as much as possible.

    I break down large jobs into small pieces.

    I try to declutter as much as possible.

    I try to put things away as soon as I've used them.

    I do some moderate exercise, whenever possible, as letting my muscles get too weak, just adds to my fatigue.



  12. Hope4Sofia

    Hope4Sofia New Member

    Thank you for all your great tips. They are so helpful! I will be puting them to good use.

    Sofia
  13. nan2dance

    nan2dance New Member

    You might want to check out the "If I knew then what I know now" thread.

    Sorry I have no suggestions on bill paying. I tend to pay bills as soon as they arrive in the mail. Then I can forget about it. And I don't have kids, so I don't know about school stuff. Do you mean PTA meeting type stuff? or help with homework? or what exactly? As for things that have made my life easier:

    ASK FOR HELP. Perhaps the hardest thing I've done and the best thing I've done. I've had a VNA help bathe me, a college kid shop groceries for me, my family send me leftovers to eat. I know who in the family I can ask to help when I get snowed under in filth. For a long time I just lived with filth cos I was way to sick to care.

    I live alone so getting a cat was one of the best things I ever did.

    This is the firsttime in a long time I don't have a dishwasher and I'm kind of stuck. There is no way I can afford it. But life WITH a dishwasher was a godsend. If I had the slightest bit of money I would buy one cos it's worth the investment. Paper plates depress the hell out of me. I didn't bother unloading it. Just take clean stuff out as I need it. Put dirty stuff in sink until the dishwasher's empty.

    Massage.

    Stinky baths :) There was a time I couldn't tolerate heat. But once I could I started living in the bathtub. I light candles, put on great music, add a few droops of essential oil. mm mm sanity.

    I used to keep juice boxes in the car. I've gotten lazy. But anytime I'll be out for a while I prepare some snack to take with me. Juice boxes work well actually. Also, I keep juice by my bed at night. Half the time when I wake up in the middle of the night and feel wired and restless I just need some sugar. Juice is the fastest, easiest way to get my fix! Knocks me out like a light.

    Exercise within reason and within my capabilities. Does wonders for the attitude. Feeling overwhelmed and such.

    Sleep with flannel sheets or scratchy wool blankets. One of those weird CFS/FM things that many of us sleep better with textured bedding. Sounds stupid. But I discovered this on my own and THEN read about how other people say the same thing.

    Sleep with earplugs and eyemask.

    Get as much sun as possible. My Mom used to take me out for long drives. It hurt just to sit, especially when she'd go around a corner and I'd shift like a lump in my seat - ouch! But oh the sun and to get out of my bedroom and my house. Get out get out get out!

    ~nan2dance



  14. Dee50

    Dee50 New Member

    1. I'm trying not to fix everything and every family members problems.

    2. I wear only Crocs shoes (in 4 different colors.lol)

    3. I think, think, think I'm learning to relax.

    4. I'm getting better at not focusing on what I can't do and doing what I can daily.

    5. Hired my housekeeper back.lol
    Dee50
  15. janieb

    janieb New Member

    Like you, I can't wear anything that pulls on my shoulders, but I also can't be comfortable wearing a bra, even the very good, expensive ones I always bought. My chiropractor tells me that everyone he treats for fibro has mentioned the bra problem to him.

    Mary
  16. Andrea4

    Andrea4 New Member

    for the bill paying:

    I made up a spreadsheet in Excel---it's like a budget too. My dh gets paid 2 times a month, so my sheet is broken into the first half of the month and the 2nd. it lists each item that is due in the first half of the month and the amt, then the same for the second. as the bills come in, they all go in a purple folder. when payday hits (on a Friday), i sit down to pay the bills. I set up as many for online payment as I could. Only my out of pocket medical and my electric bill get mailed so that helps. Everything else I can do with a few clicks on the computer. THat does help. Then the bill are filed in their on folder in the filing cabinet.

    About kids:

    I have 2 kids....3 & 5. It is HARD work trying to manage kids, espcecially little ones. Both my kids are in preschool and have parties, activities, and so on that I simply can't do. And I feel so guilty! Like valentine's day, the teacher asked me to come in to help and I couldn't do it. My body wouldn't let me. My son's teacher knows I have some kind of health problem, but she doesn't know specifics. I am part of the PTA but I can't manage the meetings. I volunteer in my own way...like i baked some muffins for a bake sale. that i could do at home and take breaks when i needed to.

    At home with the kids, i try to do things when i feel good that make it easier for later. Like i have this huge tupperwear bowl with a top. i sit down when i feel well and i fill it full of snacks...all different kinds in individual sandwich bags. i buy their carrots precut. i fill several waters for them and put them in the fridge. i try to make main courses...like chicken noodle soup, baked chicken, lean pork chops or even hamburgers..I make double so there are left overs for later that can just be reheated. days when i cant do much, i sit with them and we read books, they do art, some days its videos like schoolhouse rock or word factory while i try to get off my feet. i enlist my kids help in things like cleaning the floor (I have one of those Swivel Sweepers and it's GREAT when i can't use the reg vaccumm) or picking up.

    Hugs,
    Andrea
  17. Andrea4

    Andrea4 New Member

  18. pepper

    pepper New Member

    I have a solution - I let them pay themselves. I have all my bills - mortgage, heat, hydro, water & sewer, phone, cell phone, cable, property taxes, income taxes, insurance, everything - on equalized payments. That way the same amount has to be paid for each every month of the year.

    I have the payments automatically deducted from my bank account a couple of days after I know the money will be in the bank.

    I went through so many years of paying late payment fees or threats that things would be cut off (with the money sitting in the bank!) that I figured this was the best solution.

    The only bill I have to pay is the credit card because it varies from month to month. We got rid of all our credit cards except one MasterCard and one Visa and we only use one of them. The other is kept for emergencies if the one we always use isn't accepted.

    Pepper
    [This Message was Edited on 02/19/2006]
  19. my lifestyle changes that have made my life easier..

    1/ definately wearing looser, comfortable, clothing.
    2/wearing fingerless wooly gloves around the house when my wrist pain gets too much to bear.(they ease the pain)
    3/eating small regular meals every four hours.(never skip meals)
    4/wear comfortable low heeled shoes (eases the toe cramps)
    5/definately go to bed round about 9pm and get out of bed as soon as i wake up.(5am daily for me)
    6/eat plenty of fruit and vegatables regulary (a banana a day keeps the hemoroids away) haha
    7/know when to switch off from family stress (family dont hassle me after 6pm or else)
    8/walking even when i am in pain.even if it only lasts 10 mins..the walk that is.
    9/excepting the fibro fog days..dont fight it.be kind to yourself.
    10/be open with my family,tell them how i really feel,and say..today is a bad day please help me with decision making.
    11/only take pain medication if its necessary (like for the head and eye pain (i just cant cope on those days without help.)
    12/read important mail only on a good day,i cant cope with reading things on the fibro fog days,it gets me frustrated.
    13/dont be afraid to tell friends that you have a muscle illness,but that you cope as best you can on a day to day basis.(my friends may ask questions about it.but in truth im sick of even having to think about it.)
    14/have a warm shower before bed,its so relaxing and eases the rib and spine pain.
    15/use anything that enables me to relax (think of myself more)
    16/definately rest a bit between doing house chores.
    17/laugh.i laugh as much as i possibly can.(my sense of humour hasnt gone thank goodness)
    18/visit this site regulary and chat with your web family.
    20/enjoy nature.sit on a park bench,just enjoy the things around you.

    finally...except that you have this syndrome,we hate it.but we certainly dont hate or blame ourselves.


    love
    fran xx
  20. Hope4Sofia

    Hope4Sofia New Member

    These suggestions are helping me so much! Thank you! I'm trying to incorporate many of them into my life. It encourages me that life will get easier. Up until this year I didn't know what was wrong with me - just that I couldn't cope like everyone around me. Now that I know, it's time to change some things.

    Thank you all again! And keep the suggestions coming, they're like diamonds to me.

    Sofi