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Employing a Positive Mindset to Reduce Chronic Arthritis Pain

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Bones & Joints related image Photo: Getty Images

Up until a few years ago, I was the type of person more inclined to appreciate the sound of my own whining and complaining. It felt good, and I certainly didn’t want everyone to think my life was going great. After all, if that was the case, they’d expect me to be upbeat and optimistic all the time, and that is so much work, right?

However, as I developed a more spiritual sense of self, I fell into the understanding of how our complex minds really do have so much potential, especially in areas of positive thinking. I began to read about ways to think and grow rich, think myself thin, think myself into a new reality, etc., and while some of that may sound like false prophecy, I do believe there is some inherent value to the power of a positive mindset, particularly in matters of physical health.

If our minds are such powerful entities--and supposedly we only use a tenth of our brain’s full potential--then who’s to argue that the gray mass taking up space inside the shells of our heads cannot trump a pain pill or two when it comes to alleviating physical discomfort? So, I put it to the test one day last week.

I was feeling severely under the weather last Friday, and no matter what I did from a pharmaceutical standpoint throughout the day, nothing seemed to make me feel better. Therefore, I did what any normal person would do in the mid-afternoon work day: I lay flat on the floor with my eyes closed. Thankfully, I work from home, so there was no one around to object but the two dogs, and they were asleep anyway.

As I rested my eyes and relaxed my body, I imagined myself in a peaceful place. In my mind’s eye, I envisioned whatever it was that was making me feel poorly leaving my body and blowing away. I began to think positive thoughts. “I feel great.” “Today is a great day.” “There is nothing I cannot accomplish today because I feel spectacular.” Pause. Nothing was happening. “I am now positive this is not working.” How’s that for positive thought?

All joking aside, I did focus on the task at hand and within 20 minutes or so, I really did begin to feel better.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.