“Watch your thoughts; they become words. Watch your words; they become actions. Watch your actions; they become habit. Watch your habits; they become character. Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.”― Lao Tzu
I’ve begun writing another chapter in my life. Perhaps this chapter ought to be called “Sticktoitiveness”. Why? Well, I like the sound of the word, it makes me smile, and…
Sticktoitiveness is defined as a “dogged perseverance; resolute tenacity“, which has reemerged as a theme/personal quality in my recent life.
It’s one of those many things that you may have had to cast aside, in one way or another, as you learned how to live with a chronic illness, such as fibromyalgia. It’s also something that, in my opinion, you should never cast aside when you are living with a chronic illness, such as fibromyalgia.
The 3 Ds
Living with a chronic illness, means living with constant internal and external changes. The changes you undergo will create havoc in self-perception/self-image, in relationships, in goal-setting, in employment, in pacing achievements, and in even cooking pasta (I threw that in just to make sure that you were still paying attention). 😉
In other words, having a chronic illness can mean taking life moment by moment and doing your best to prepare for whatever shifts occur–it’s not an easy task.
I’ve done my share of explaining and lamenting the challenges of having fibromyalgia, so that’s not what this post is about. If you’re interested in learning the depths of the difficulties, however, you can look in my archives.
This post is about why you, both people who are living with a chronic illness and those who are a part of their lives, must accept and live by the 3 Ds.
What are the 3 Ds? No, this isn’t about multiple third dimension. This is about accepting: disappointments, decisions, and determination.
Disappointments, Decisions & Determination
The reality is that, when you are living with a chronic illness, you will face setbacks more often than not. They are a part of the package. They are also the first D, i.e., disappointments.
You will experience disappointments like never before… Seriously.
Especially, if you attained the status of ‘responsible adult’, then disappointments (particularly in yourself) will begin to take on a whole new meaning, because others may be dependent upon your well-being for their survival.
Decisions are an everyday part of life, and are the second D.
Decisions, when you have a chronic illness, can no longer be a straightforward and static process. Why? Because decisions can never really be wholly independent from your (unknowable) physical status.
This leaves the third D, and the most important, determination,
If nothing else, I have come to understand that you must remain determined in seeing your goals through to the end, whatever they are and regardless of your chronic illness.
Yes, having a chronic illness can drag you down, cause you to despair, and generally make living feel less than worthwhile I am not denying that. Certainly, too, there are goals that may need to be altered or even utterly discarded.
Still, I am stating that if you focus on your goals with “dogged perseverance” or “resolute tenacity”, in other words sticktoitiveness, then your goals can serve as a way out of the darker aspects of having a chronic illness.
No matter what, stick to accomplishing whatever goals make your life have meaning, make you happy, and make you feel sane when everything else about you feels less than so.
Until Next Time,