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"Push yourself!" Is this a bad idea, or what?
Iris L.
Posted: Friday, August 1, 2014 11:33 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 16448


The psychologist told me to push myself.  Yet, when I do, I crash.  I can't take too much pressure on myself.  I need a consistent life.  Rationally, I know that.  But I can't get that psychologist's demand out of my mind.  She really made my life worse!

Does anyone push themselves?  How do you manage to stay stable?  Do you find a consistent life better?

Iris L.

Myriam
Posted: Saturday, August 2, 2014 12:04 AM
Joined: 12/6/2011
Posts: 3326


Iris, there's nothing consistent in my life. I feel like I have 5 balls in the air at all times while everything is shifting. But it is my choice, although I don't hesitate to back off if I feel I'm taking on too much. You're an intelligent woman capable of making decisions that are best for you. Why does the psychologist believe you should push yourself? Push yourself to do what? 


We all have a limited amount of time in this sphere. Let's choose to do what brings us joy! What brings you joy?


Mimi S.
Posted: Saturday, August 2, 2014 8:57 AM
Joined: 11/29/2011
Posts: 7035


Iris, for most of us on these boards, we must push ourselves to continue with Best Practices.


I go 3 times a week to PT. On hot, muggy days, it's easier to stay home. I go. However, this is where the push only goes so far. I can no longer walk as far as I used to on the treadmill. I can tell how I'm doing by how far and how fast I can go. And if it's a hot day, even though the place is air conditioned, I can't do as much. So, I slow the machine down and quit when I've had it. And, at first, my mind tried to make me guilty. Common sense ruled. I got out, I exercised and so be it.

Same with social activities. I prefer small groups of two to four. I no longer feel guilty when I decline an invitation to dinner where there will a dozen at the table. And my friends are gradually coming to understand. 

So push is fine. And from what you've been writing these many years, you do push yourself.  Just accept that you must be comfortable with how much you push.  You want to avoid being the couch potato content to nibble on potato chips and drinking only beer . 


llee08032
Posted: Saturday, August 2, 2014 10:21 AM
Joined: 5/20/2014
Posts: 4406


I'm with Myriam,

"Push" yourself only to do what will bring you joy and happiness. In others areas we need to look for ways where we can reduce stress. Consistency, routine and structure can give us a sense of security, safety and comfort. You have a brain disease which is unpredictable and having areas of routine and consistency is needed. The word "push" was not a wise choice and it conjures up an image of pressure and forcefulness! Please don't be hard on yourself and think that you are doing things wrong or not doing what you should be doing according to this psychologist. Telling someone who obviously is doing everything and the best that they can to live a full and meaningful life with a degenerative brain disease to "push" themselves is like telling a person grieving their deceased loved that they are grieving in the wrong way! 

 

Are you still not sleeping well? If not that is a major area of importance and a stress factor and you need to focus on nurturing, nourishment, relaxation and that which gives you peace of mind. 

 

If there are things that you want to do or feel that you "should" (not a good word choice either) be doing prioritize a list of these things. This does not mean that you have to rush or push to do these things but just take gentle steps and movement in a way that is manageable and doable for you. 

It sounds as if perhaps the psychologist mainly practices within the theoretical underpinnings of cognitive therapy. I am not disputing the benefits of cognitive interventions when treating dementia I would however, suffice to say that a person centered and strength based approach could perhaps be more beneficial. 

 

The groundbreaking origins of Best Practices and the Wellness and Recovery focused approaches came from Prochaska and Diclemente's Stages of Change model as well as Rollnick and Miller's work in Motivational Interviewing. These are person centered and strength based Best Practices in the field of psychology and an area that we perhaps need to be knowledgeable about when seeking psychological counseling and support. 

 

 


llee08032
Posted: Saturday, August 2, 2014 11:14 AM
Joined: 5/20/2014
Posts: 4406


Mimi,

I wanted you to know out of respect for your valued opinion and input that when you were posting your reply I was composing mine and that my reply is not in opposition to your view.


Iris L.
Posted: Saturday, August 2, 2014 7:20 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 16448


My physical tolerance for changes in my daily routine is becoming compromised.  I feel sick if I change my routine.

Iris L.

Mimi S.
Posted: Saturday, August 2, 2014 7:37 PM
Joined: 11/29/2011
Posts: 7035


Iris,
I think all of our messages are: Do what and only what feels good to you. If doping something makes you feel that pressure descending on you, forget it.
LLee, I didn't take what you wrote as opposing mine. of course yours was a lot more sophisticated than mine, but I don't take offense at that. There was a time I would have checked all those references you gave; no longer.

Iris L.
Posted: Saturday, August 2, 2014 9:36 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 16448


Mimi, even doing the good things can make me feel bad.   My life is changing. 

 

From the time I became ill, many years ago, I learned to cut out bad things from my life in order to remain stable.  Now I am confronted with cutting out good things from my life in order to remain stable.  By good things, I mean activities I want to do.  

 

In other words, I find myself limiting my time outside the home.  Is this the beginning of becoming housebound? 

 

I also find myself becoming irritable.  I'm usually in good spirits.



Iris L.

 

 


Myriam
Posted: Saturday, August 2, 2014 10:50 PM
Joined: 12/6/2011
Posts: 3326


Iris, wish I could give you a hug. You give so much to us through these boards and I hope you find your "new" normal.
Iris L.
Posted: Saturday, August 2, 2014 11:18 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 16448


Thanks, Myriam.  Hug received!

Iris L.

alz+
Posted: Tuesday, August 5, 2014 9:33 AM
Joined: 9/12/2013
Posts: 3556


Iris L. wrote:

Mimi, even doing the good things can make me feel bad.   My life is changing. 

 

From the time I became ill, many years ago, I learned to cut out bad things from my life in order to remain stable.  Now I am confronted with cutting out good things from my life in order to remain stable.  By good things, I mean activities I want to do.  

 

In other words, I find myself limiting my time outside the home.  Is this the beginning of becoming housebound? 

 

I also find myself becoming irritable.  I'm usually in good spirits. 



Iris L.
 

 

 

 

Fear of becoming housebound...I know that fear. But the changes come in waves and I am surprised how much better I am now than 4 months ago and know I am sliding but seem to have adjusted more, then cried this morning because it hits me a day or 2 later when I have been rejected "in public". 

 

Wonder about PUSHING MYSELF, too. I am forgetting what it was I used to be able to do! Now I want to get rid of my beautiful writing desk as I have not sat there in 2 years and struggle to write coherently. Back to topic, it is useless to try to PUSH MYSELF TO WRITE, more things are becoming difficult so I drop doing them. Then we are supposed to figure out for ourselves what we are now able to do? Draining and scary. 

  

I walk when it is cool with my dog, I go to Silver Sneakers exercise twice a week (unless too tired because then my knees will hurt from forcing my body to do what it has no energy to do). I stay in bed some days and just watch old movies.  

You got a new camera - wonder if it is hard to learn to use it. I forgot how to edit pictures, then it came back one day. Recently stood at washing machine and wondered what happens with the clothes when they are wet for 20 minutes. I carried them outside! And I have husband at home to think for me, to cook and all that, drive. It is very disturbing to think of all of us on our own handling it all. And what a paucity of help for those of us alone! We use the message board to figure out is this normal? Is this permanent?

  

Swimming is so good - even just to walk in a pool. But some days a 5 minute walk from my house is too much. Then I think, well I have hit THE NEXT STAGE, I am going down etc. But I make a comeback. The leaden inertia that comes over me is like moving with wet blankets on my back. Is that part of ALZ?

 

   As a physician what do you know about "adrenal depletion"? Is that a real thing? 

  

Also I now write a lot of nonsense, convoluted stuff not related to topic. Then later go back and find these 10 paragraph screeds. Thank goodness for the EDIT button. Jeepers.

 

  I always pushed myself to work more than anyone else, to finish stuff. Losing ability to push myself. I understand the fear of these increasing deficits.
 

  

Love and Courage
Iris L.
Posted: Tuesday, August 5, 2014 10:15 AM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 16448


Hi, Alz+.  Re: adrenal fatigue--this was a popular term about 20 years ago when chronic fatigue syndrome was becoming apparent.  In fact, I have a book with this title in my bookshelf.  I don't know how physiologic this term is.  There are all types of reasons for fatigue.  I have several reasons, that I became aware of over the years. 

I am finally, after so many years, coming to terms with my energy levels.  I posted on "Musing--a fine balance" on this Younger Onset board.

 

I'm glad you are coming to terms with your own energy levels.  We are learning our "new normals" for ourselves.

Iris L.
 


Lisa428
Posted: Tuesday, August 5, 2014 5:31 PM
Joined: 12/5/2011
Posts: 795


Hey Iris,

 

Sounds like you are going through some changes.  Change is inevitable and most of the time good.

 

I "Push Myself" to do a lot of things.  I do also listen to my body to make sure I don't become exhausted.  That's when I am most vunarable to my illness/EOAD.

 

Another thing that works for me is seeing my therapist to make sure I am psychologically and emotionally sound.  That, along with continuing to be social is difficult for me.

 

We are continually adapting to the changes in our lives, in our minds,and emotions.  It is called Living with Alzheimer's/other dementias.

 

Please, try to find a healthy balance for yourself.

 

Thinking of you.

 

Peace and Hope,

Lisa

 


alz+
Posted: Tuesday, August 5, 2014 9:04 PM
Joined: 9/12/2013
Posts: 3556


so is inertia, the Big Fatigue, a normal part of Alzheimer's?

 

are they 2 different things?

 

My time with my Dad saw him slow down, he could not walk fast or exercise - can't say what "stage" that was though.

 

Inertia, that feeling of lead butt and feet, really have to talk myself into standing up some days. So maybe it is good to push myself out of bed, and good to not push myself out of bed?

 

 Wanted to do something today so we drove to town and bummed around a little. I was a passenger. But so exhausted when we got home I had lunch and slept 3 hours. What is that?

 

 So I guess the Adrenal "fatigue" was  like a new age concept?

 

On an irrelevant note: socks and sandals are finally high fashion.

 

love and courage


Paul Hornback
Posted: Wednesday, August 6, 2014 9:19 AM
Joined: 8/9/2013
Posts: 584


Fatigue is definitely a continuing problem that I battle now. I have to pace myself and rest when I'm tired. this is difficult because I used to going "balls to the wall". I've had to learn to adjust my activity levels especially if I'm having several foggy days in a row. These are the worst for fatigue.

I also see a Psychologist who helps me handle the emotional issues related to having to adjust to the new normal that seems to continually change. Talking it out with someone helps, at least for me it does. We talk about my daily routine and what changes I need to make based on how things are going. He has been a big help for me.

I also struggle with not wanting to leave the homestead. I'm more comfortable here but I also know I need to socialize so I force myself to get out a little during the week and on Sundays. Of course, I have to make sure I'm having a good day so that I'm not a burden to others.

God Bless, Paul


Iris L.
Posted: Wednesday, August 6, 2014 1:07 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 16448


It's 5 days later.  I've been resting and taking it easy.  I feel like my body is like a rechargeable battery--it needs some time to recharge.   I don't recharge overnight like I used to.  I'm not the Energizer bunny any more. 

 

But that's okay!  I can be a Mellow bunny now. 

 

Paul, it seems like your psychologist is supporting you in a positive manner.  I wish I had had that positive support.  I felt like I was being chastised instead of being encouraged when I saw the psychologist.

One of the things they never recommend is getting enough good sleep and rest.  This is helping me.
 

 

The reason I spend so much time reading the boards is to discover solutions to the problems I am having.  I need to know I'm not alone in what I'm experiencing.   I was made to feel like just a lazy person.

I so much appreciate everyone who posts here and shares their experiences and triumphs!

 

Iris L. 


llee08032
Posted: Thursday, August 7, 2014 7:44 AM
Joined: 5/20/2014
Posts: 4406


Iris,

So glad to hear you are resting and taking it easy! The bunny requires more hours and perhaps even days of charging time! 

 

Lot's of good things happen to our body's and brain's when we are resting and sleeping. Think of all the good things going on within the body of an infant as he or she literally sleeps away the first several months of their new life!

Put some zzzzzz's into that sleep bank and nourish and baby yourself!