Shortly after being diagnosed with fibromyalgia, I started seeing a therapist. She taught me how to focus my energy away from the pain and negativity in order to better cope. One of the methods she suggested was keeping a pain journal.
A pain journal is a journal that you write in at the end of each day. You can write about anything you want. Your daily pains, emotions, experiences, interactions, fears, anxiety, etc. There are no boundaries to what you write. It allows you to release your stress, burdens, and negativity onto paper and allow you to transfer that stress from your body onto paper. Reduction in stress reduces overall chronic pain.
It will also keep track of the pain and symptoms you are having and potential triggers of flares. (Triggers could be your menstrual cycle, outside stressors, or level of activity.) You can use it to discuss your symptoms with your physician and decide which treatment option is best for you.
What can be used as a journal?
It can be an actual paper journal or an electronic journal. Either way, it’s a way for you to express yourself. You can also get a guided journal with prompts to get you started (such as the first one listed).
Coloring Helps, Too
Coloring also has benefits such as lowering anxiety and blood pressure as well as calming the body and mind. It helps to distract from the pain, a fleeting mind, or the need to rest. If you have kids, this is a great activity to do with them. Check out these cool coloring books for adults!