BY KELLY O'BRIEN
When I was diagnosed with POTS Syndrome back in 2010, a friend of mine told me I "needed to be the CEO of my own health." And she was absolutely right.
Becoming the CEO of your health is taking responsibility for every aspect of your healing journey physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. It may seem daunting in the beginning, but it soon becomes incredibly empowering and for me, it became a valuable lesson in self-love.
If you have any ailment albeit acute or chronic, follow these five steps to get your body and mind back to balance.
1. Get educated.
Gain a thorough understanding of your body and whatever it is that's invading it. Educating yourself on your illness through reputable sources and professionals you trust will give you the best understanding of the necessary steps in the healing process. When it comes time to choose a doctor, walk into the office armed with knowledge so you're able to participate in the conversation via a team approach rather than handing decisions about your body over to a doctor.
2. Get organized.
While recovering, I relied heavily on an organizational binder that chronologically tracked lab results, physician notes, personal writings on how I felt, ultrasounds, MRIs, tests, etc.
When you have your binder, it can be an effective tool to present as you travel from specialist to specialist. Keeping track of your results and anything else related to your illness also helps your physician avoid redundant testing and procedures. Walking in educating and organized saves so much time, leaving the majority of any appointment to focus on treatment options.
3. Change your language.
Since you're the CEO of your own health, you'll be strategizing along with one or more physicians of how exactly you'll go about healing so you need to be prepared to speak knowledgeably.
One of the first things I removed from my vocabulary was "chronic." I simply didn't care for the word because it means constantly reoccurring, but I was in the process of healing. Change your verbiage to mirror your end goal of glowing, vibrant health. When you truly take charge of your health and treat the process as if you're running a company, you quickly realize you had this inner healing power all along.
4. Rethink your medical team if necessary.
Did you know you can fire a doctor? You are the person in charge of your health, not your doctor. If a physician is simply treating symptoms with medications and you're unsettled by that, you can get rid of him or her. Search for a health professional or team that's going to actively work with you to get to the core of your illness, that's dedicating to curing you with more than just prescriptions. I must have met with 30+ physicians and while it was taxing, I realized I deserved to honor my body and healing process by creating my own physician dream team with one goal in mind: heal Kelly alongside.
5. Listen to your body.
While it's important to listen to the medical experts involved in your care, it's most important to listen to your body. How does it feel? Is your functionality increasing? How does food make you feel?
We're often so tuned in with experts in various fields that we lose touch with the most important expert of this whole process, our own bodies. And your body is speaking to you every step of the way.
The healing process can turn into a healing trans-formative journey when you realize that you are in control! I'd love to hear how your own ideas for how to become the CEO of your health!