How to Put a Stop to Catastrophic Thinking

Catastrophizing is also called “magnifying.” This is a good way to think of it because it emphasizes how often we magnify unpleasant experiences way out of proportion.

How to Respond to Unkind Remarks When You’re Chronically Ill

Responding to unkind and insensitive comments can require a lot of thought and energy. This is because there are several factors to consider before deciding what to say.

12 Things I Didn’t Expect to Happen As I Age

I’ve noticed some changes in my life as I age, and it’s been interesting to discover what a surprise each one is to me. Some things I’ve welcomed; others not so much.

12 Comments That Would Be Welcomed by the Chronically Ill

Most people have the best of intentions when speaking to those who struggle with their health. That said, often remarks by friends and family are off the mark.

You Can Use Mindfulness to Choose How to Live

We can learn to be present for our experience without our habitual responses automatically kicking in—responses that are often unskillful, knee-jerk reactions that we later regret.

Things to Do When You’re Mostly Housebound

I’ve had over sixteen years to adjust to being at home most of the time. Here seven ideas for living a purposeful and fulfilling life even if you’re stuck at home.

“Dr. Google,” Friend or Foe?

Here are a few of experiences I’ve had with Dr. Google, first as friend, then as foe. I hope they serve as a guide to using Google wisely. It’s not easy to do, that’s for sure.

Turning Negatives into Positives When You're Chronically Ill

I thought it would be constructive to take what I tend to think of as the negatives about chronic pain and illness and see if I could turn them into positives.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A Striking Story

Julie Rehmeyer’s book is an excellent read even if you have no interest in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. She is a great writer, so the book stands on its own as a page-turning memoir.

16 Tips from 16 Years Sick

There’s been one constant in my life since I began writing for Psychology Today six years ago: chronic illness. Because 10 + 6 = 16, it’s time for “16 Tips from 16 Years Sick.”

A Practice to Help You Handle Life's Difficulties with Grace

In this piece, I want to share a practice I’ve been using for a couple of years. It’s simple, really. I intentionally start a sentence by saying to myself “It’s okay if…”

When Our Chronically Ill Bodies Say “Rest,” Why Don't We?

Most people who are chronically ill (which includes chronic pain) benefit from scheduling at least one rest period into their day because it helps keep symptoms from flaring.

Top "Turning Straw Into Gold" Pieces from the Past 6 Years

I always celebrate my anniversary of writing for Psychology Today with a post that offers some of my past pieces for reading.

Top 10 Reasons Chronic Illness Can Make Me Want to Scream!

I’m trying to ride the waves of disappointment and frustration with quiet patience. That said, I have days when I want to scream, "Enough is enough!"

Everything You Need to Know About Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

"Lighting Up a Hidden World" is the most comprehensive guide to-date on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, a little-understood illness that can have a devastating effect on people’s lives.

Learning to Live Gracefully with Change and Uncertainty

Because life is ever-changing, uncertainty about what’s to come next is always present for us.

The 9 Most Frustrating Things About Being Chronically Ill

Healthy or not, everybody has his or her share of frustrations in life. This piece focuses on frustrations that are unique to those with ongoing health issues.

10 Things to Try When You’re Feeling Lonely

Anyone can feel the pain of loneliness; here are 10 ways to ease the pain associated with it.

3 Suggestions for Responding Wisely to the Election Results

On November 17th, the New York Times had a front page story on the turmoil many families in the U.S. are facing this holiday season in light of the Presidential election.

Feeling Happy for Others Can Make You Happy

Here’s my recipe letting other people’s joy make you happy. The true wonder of this is that the more you’re able to feel happy for others, the happier you’ll feel yourself.

What I Would Change Were My Health Restored Tomorrow

In my last piece, I wrote about what I wouldn’t change if I regained my health. Here’s what I would change...

What I Wouldn’t Change If My Health Were Restored Tomorrow

I’ve lived with chronic pain and illness for over 15 years. This is the first of two pieces on the subject of what I would and what I would not change should I regain my health.

Finding Peace and Contentment No Matter Where You Are

The only way I can describe this experience is to say it was a moment of wishlessness.

10 Strategies to Try When You’re Sick of Being Sick

After fifteen years of chronic illness and writing a book titled "How to Be Sick," I still can feel sick of being sick.

What to Do When Your Parent-Caregiver Is a Narcissist

I wanted to interview Meredith again so I could get some pointers on how the chronically ill can effectively deal with a parent-caregiver who is self-absorbed and manipulative.

Why Is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Still a Mystery?

After fifteen plus years of suffering from this illness with little relief from symptoms, I often feel forgotten by the medical community.

Mindfulness: The Gift of Taking Refuge in the Present Moment

The beauty of this practice is that it grounds you in the present moment, and this provides welcome relief from ruminating about the past and worrying about the future.

7 Pet Peeves About Doctors

Unless studies show that there’s no connection between a medication and a particular side-effect, the doctor should be saying, “We don’t know.”

A Day in the Life Without Government

It’s simple really. We need government and government needs us. This "Day in the Life" hypothetical illustrates why.

Pacing: The Chronically Ill Person’s Best Friend

I have a love-hate relationship with pacing. I love it because it keeps my symptoms from flaring. But I also can ignore it because it keeps me from doing everything I want to do.

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