To be fit and in top form and then suddenly experience an injury is soul- crushing, depressing and frustrating. All your past efforts lost in one spectacular moment. Your accidental fall feels like a TKO [ TKO=total knock-out]. But is it really?
Healing as another measure of athletic performance.
Why not consider your healing path as another measure of athletic performance? Weight training measures your strength by repetitions and the amount of weight. Healing, the ability to complete basic tasks, to regain your independence through consistent day to day effort, is another form of athletic performance. For example, you can use your body strength to try new ways to get in and out of bed, to keep muscles strong. Simple items such as a heating pack can be used [squeezed ]to keep your hands strong, flexible. You can also lift heating packs over your head to test range of motion. Use whatever you have on hand to your advantage to remain strong, flexible and mobile.
Maintain your momentum.
If it’s true that visualization can shift your physiology without physical practise. Isn’t this the perfect past-time for someone injured? Someone who wants to maintain the benefits of physical activity and muscle strength? Even better, you can imagine yourself doing any sport, in any season, any weather condition, anywhere in the world. You not only free yourself with visualization, but you are inviting your body to manifest strength and rebuild its recovery path from the perspective that complete healing has already been achieved. Imagined healing is not just an escape. It is a powerful mind science tool that can help you to stay psychologically strong as well. It’s so very easy to panic and be frustrated by day to day limitations. Use visualization to your advantage to shift your mindset and your physiology through short daily meditation practises.
* In my own journey [post cycling accident], especially the beginning, I had a lot of difficulty with “basics”. I couldn’t cut anything with a knife. Getting dressed took forever and I was not able to write with my left hand or brush my teeth that well as a lefty. Flossing was agonizing. Nor could I dare lift anything over my head with my right arm. These are natural limits imposed by the type of fractures and combination of injuries you may have. The body also needs to pass through a natural sequence of healing.
For bone fractures these are:
- Initial break/bleed
- Inflammatory phase
- Repair and rebuilding bone phase
- and the final phase, remodelling of bone, which is ongoing.
By just doing a little more each day to stay strong, using daily tasks as physical therapy, will help prevent your muscles from getting weak. The more you can manage, the sooner you will regain your independence. This is also true for meditation and visualization.
Just a few minutes each day seeing yourself completely recovered will make a quantum difference to your recovery.
Use your self-discipline to aid your recovery.
All those hours dedicated to getting more fit made you strong in ways you haven’t even considered. Exercise has physical and psychological benefits. It helps clear out the stress but it also allows you to become resilient physically and mentally. Use your ability to focus on a goal to help you through your healing path and temporary limitations. Use that spirited determination to your advantage and include visualization in your recovery, especially, on ugly recovery days. It will not interfere with prescribed therapies or treatments and it has many incredible benefits.
Difficult recovery days.
There will be recovery days that will hurt, be ridiculous, filled with struggle and failed attempts to do simple things. It will be so easy to get hostile and want to focus on defeat instead of where you want to go-OUTSIDE!
By remembering what you did before the fall might help you visualize yourself active and completely healed. While it won’t change the fact you can’t cut your food with a knife or get in and out of a bathtub, it will take the lid off of your anxiety and divert it toward the feeling as if you were outside. Imagine yourself in your favorite sport, pushing yourself to go farther, faster and creating a personal best time for a [healing] finish. Not only is this helpful, it does give you the determination to manage the not-so-pleasant days.
Every healing path and recovery will be unique. A great deal will depend on who you are as a person, your mobility and what combination of bones were fractured and the type of injuries you may have. And, to make it more interesting, where you live will make a big impact on how well you can adapt your space to your needs. One level, open spaces- Lucky you! If you have a lot of stairs at home and now have been gifted with crutches, you might find yourself making decisions about sleeping on the couch in order to access the bathroom and the kitchen. All of these will challenge your perspective on your recovery.
Installing “remembered practise” to heal.
Since science tells us that we can change our bodies with simple methods such as meditation and visualization techniques. By installing “remembered” practise to recover sooner you can create a unique experience and experiment. While many might find this a bit weird and far-fetched, it is only when you have experienced results, have your own proof, that it will become clear how powerful this science really is. Explore it for yourself and see if it gives you momentum and stress relief.
Here is a link to Lightspeed’s article on shifting athletic performance with REMEMBERED PRACTISE.
Use psychological tools for performance for healing.
There are many psychological tools to help you through your physical healing. But have you considered also looking at all the voices of encouragement that you would normally use to excel in sport and for high performance, and apply these in creative ways to your healing path?
Find ways to celebrate your progress, no matter how small. To visualize yourself completely healed is one quantum step. But to be cheered on as we approach the finish line makes the last few steps easier to reach.
Wishing you a speedy recovery.
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