It's today's tip!
I started getting headaches as a really little kid. Before I could talk, my mom tells me that I would hold my fist to my forehead and cry. In 2014 and 2015, the headaches were worse than they had ever been: I was getting a headache nearly every day. On preventative medication, I had researched every latest finding so closely that when I visited the UCSF Headache Clinic they told me that there was nothing more they could do for me. As I was leaving, the head physician told me to say hello to the experts I was in touch with for him. At that moment, I knew I had done as much as I could.
I was worn out and confused about how to proceed. My husband stepped in. He said, “OK, now you know that there’s nothing more you can do. So why don’t you figure out something to say to yourself to feel better when the headache comes?”
He was right. I needed something solid and clear. Something that would help ground me. With him, I came up with two sentences that I could repeat to myself whenever I felt migraine pain,
I’m seeking out better treatment for my migraines than I have in my whole life. In the future, there may be new developments in the world of migraine treatment and I look forward to learning about them.
It sounds so simple, but this two-sentence approach worked wonders. It stopped me from spinning out with fears about the future when I got a headache. It was a definitive statement, and I needed that. And I knew that the statement was true.
In the time since then, I’ve indeed found new ways to treat my migraines that have significantly improved the headache situation, but this two-sentence approach is my grab bag tip for today. It works for lots of thorny issues. It’s a matter of asking yourself: What is true about this situation right now? And what are the limits of what I can do?
Your goal is to give yourself a frame for containment on a topic that likely, for you, feels anything but contained.
The two sentences really work! Give them a try.