Pacing and overcoming fatigue

6) The cycle of boom and bust

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  • Life demands – this can be any normal but demanding task from getting up in the morning to looking after your children or grandchildren
  • Risk of doing too much – There may be tasks which you enjoy but which can make you tired before you realise you have overdone things
  • Trigger symptoms – You start to notice the tell tale signs that your breathing is getting more difficult, your fatigue is getting worse, pain is increasing and you are worrying that you won’t have enough energy left for anything else
  • Rest to recover – You have to rest to get back to a steady breathing pattern , wait for pain to be controlled or until your fatigue has improved again when life demands come round again. Recognising when to rest is an essential skill.
  • Loss of fitness – The less you do, the less you are able to do physically. The more you worry about this, the more apprehensive and scared you are of attempting the same task again
  • At risk of unhelpful actions – Negative thoughts, feelings and consequences feel overwhelming and you are even less likely to attempt the task in future. You convince yourself that you will never be able to do this when life demands come round again