Whether it is missing out on a promotion for work because of your illness or not being there to see your son’s winning goal in the game, living with psoriatic arthritis makes it especially difficult to take part in many of the traditional reasons to celebrate the victories in our lives. So what does that require us to do if we are going to continue to live meaningful and full lives?
Missing out on the big moments
When each day is filled with pain on some level, it is easy (and totally understandable) to get wrapped up in our pain. Daily aches and swollen joints (not to mention fatigue and brain fog) make it difficult to live the life we’d planned for ourselves. Because of this, we often miss out on many “big” moments that always seemed to be depicted in the classic Hallmark movies.
Being grateful and thankful
This is why it is especially important to take the time to be grateful for the small victories that we have in life. If we become too focused on all the things that PsA has taken from us, then we will forget to live the best life we can, despite our psoriatic arthritis diagnosis. So, when life is tough, when we’ve missed out on those big victories, how can we re-focus our efforts to be grateful and thankful for the small victories instead?
A look at how to be thankful for the small victories in life, despite the fact that you have psoriatic arthritis.
Make a list
Never underestimate the power of a list. Much like giving a voice to our victories lends them credence, so does writing them down. There is a great deal of acknowledgment that comes from simply putting your victories, no matter how small, down on paper. Did you stretch this morning even if you really didn’t want to? Write it down. Did you make a healthy dinner instead of opting for take-out? Write it down. You might be surprised at how long your list of victories really is at the end of each day.
Take the time to brag on yourself a little! Did you choose to eat anti-inflammatory foods and remember to take ALL your meds on time today? Woot! Shout it from the rooftops! Phone a friend and brag on yourself a bit. Let them know that you spent the entire day trying your hardest to be positive about everything and you did it! Score! Saying something out loud gives it credence and power. Tell someone that PsA did NOT win today.
No one understands the value in small victories like a fellow PsA warrior. Hop on your social media platform of choice, grab a new thread of a discussion, or pop in a new Q&A topic about what you are proud of today. You will be surprised at all the things we have to be proud of each and every day. Who knows, you might just be inspired or inspire someone else to be thankful for the small victories of life with psoriatic arthritis as well.
Don’t give up
We all have bad days. Days when it feels like we will forever and ever and ever feel this bad. We have days when it seems like life is just passing us by and we are missing out on every single victory, big or small. But that is no reason to give up trying. So this day didn’t live up to everything you wanted it to be. That’s okay. There is ALWAYS tomorrow. Keep pushing through and lean on your friends (and an ice pack or 7) for support. Life with psoriatic arthritis is not a straight line. It is filled with highs and lows. Don’t give up on yourself.
Change your perspective
Sometimes, we can get so caught up in viewing life through a gray lens that everything, no matter how big or small gets tainted with gray clouds. Every ache and every pain gets magnified to the point that it is all we can see. It isn’t easy, but when you are looking for small victories in life with psoriatic arthritis, sometimes the best thing we can do is change our perspective. Take off those gray colored glasses and change them up for rose ones every once in a while. You will be surprised at all the wonderful things you have been missing.