Wouldn’t it be nice to be problem-free for a while? Imagine how relaxing it would be to have no worries for a day or even for a couple of hours.
I think that’s what we all strive for, especially when we are in the midst of a health-related challenge. There are lots of things that need to be handled, and we tend to want to take care of them all at once so we can coast for a while. This creates a lot of stress, trying to juggle many different things at the same time.
I’m sorry to spoil the vision, but here’s the bad news: you will never be 100% problem-free. The objective should be to learn how to manage the problems you have.
Have you ever noticed that when you solve a problem, the solution itself creates a host of new problems? That’s because problems are just part of life you can’t ignore or avoid. It’s the real world. It’s reality.
Here’s an example. My wife loves a horse and was boarding him. She was having difficulties going to visit him due to weather, traffic, other boarders at the stables, etc. So we decided to have him on our property and that was going to solve the problem. But that created a whole host of new problems: horses feel safe around other horses, but he was going to be all alone on our property; we had to arrange for food delivery, what we were going to do with the manure, etc. All new problems caused by the solution to the first problem, problems we would not have had otherwise.
That’s why it’s important to learn how to manage your problems and focus on solving one at a time. It’s much less stressful and much more practical.
This article is one in a series on coping strategies for patients and caregivers alike. For more thoughts on caregiving, coping strategies, and just plain fun subscribe to my free monthly newsletter at www.CaringAndCoping.com