Posts Tagged ‘work-life balance’

Juggling Work & Illness

June 10th, 2009

Some of you may know that for the past few months I have been writing articles on Health Central’s My Migraine Connection on legal issues that relate to Migraine and chronic illness – doctor/patient confidentiality, protection of your Medical Records under HIPAA, Accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act, and look soon (in the next day or two) for an article on taking intermittent leave under the Family Medical Leave Act. You may know that in addition to coaching Migraineurs and others with chronic illness in how to manage life, get better, and live well with chronic illness, I am also a business coach, an attorney and a mediator, and I’m helping my husband develop several other web-based businesses for our family.

I try not to make too many recommendations that I haven’t tried myself, and so if I am going to coach and advise people in how to perform the extreme juggling act that is life with chronic illness, I guess I’d better be quite the juggler myself. I didn’t necessarily set out to do it on purpose – it worked out that way. When full time lawyering didn’t fit with chronic fatigue and triggered too many Migraines, when business coaching dropped way off in the current economy, when Migraine management coaching was a great idea but needed some time to develop, I have tried to keep nimble and keep using all my skills, trying new things and renewing old ones, all while getting sufficient rest, managing my triggers, and practicing my intentional relaxation.

I really started out this post to point you to the writing I’ve done on legal topics lately, because I think as you are managing your life with Migraine, these are useful pieces of information for you to have. But I do think a lot about all the many pieces that make up my life, the balls I have up in the air, as I work to manage it all, and to help those of you who work with me to manage what you juggle as well. It’s great to have something to work on. You don’t need to have as many things to manage as I do – I’m probably an extreme case. But it is important for us to have a sense of purpose and to be making a contribution in life – even when we are ill. It may not be work for pay – but if that’s possible, it’s a good thing! I recently added a little part-time job to my mix that keeps me on my feet for several hours, several days a week. Despite some initial exhaustion, over all my stamina seems to be building.

I hope for you that you have something that can get you out of bed and give you a sense of purpose – at least some of the time. Let me know how your juggling act is going!

- Megan

Street juggler image courtesy of Amit Bansal.

Tags: , , ,
Posted in Advocacy, Managing, Musings | Comments (2)

Balance through the Storm – Maintaining our Health in Hard Times

December 11th, 2008

Balance is a precarious thing. Living a life in balance is a challenge for most of us in the 21st century, with the demands of careers, family, a fast-changing world, information overload. Add chronic illness into that mix and living a life in balance becomes both more crucial and more challenging.

The elements are the same, whether you are ill or well.  All of us need:

With these elements present, and balanced, in our lives, human beings can live healthy and fulfilled lives, on physical, mental, emotional and spiritual levels.  When these elements are lacking, or out of balance, we see problems arise. For someone without chronic illness, those problems may not show up right away. They may take years to manifest. For those of us with chronic illness, lack of balance triggers us into attacks, flare-ups, and deterioration of our conditions.

I have to confess I have struggled quite a bit with that balance lately. Like most of us, hard economic times have had their impact on my business, and I have tried to compensate by working harder and longer. To the extent to which this means I am more focused and get more done with my working time, it’s not a problem. The issue that I see is one that most of my clients experience as well, that of being unable to stop. I know I can’t work through lunch or on beyond 5:30 without real immediate consequences to my health. Trying to sustain that level of focus without rest breaks is one of my biggest Migraine triggers. Knowing that if I keep pushing now I may lose the whole day tomorrow is usually enough to stop me, but not always. Do you find it hard to maintain balance right now?

I picture us standing on the center of a see-saw. In calm weather, we can learn, through time, to balance pretty well on the center of that see-saw, training our muscles to adjust to little fluctuations and shifts of weight, to keep us in balance most of the time. If a big wind comes up, the muscles we have trained and the balance-ability we have developed just aren’t sufficient to the job any more. I think in the current economy we are standing on the center of a see-saw in a big gusty wind. We need to strenghten those balance muscles now more than ever! We need them more than ever!

Many of us are facing realities in which we must do more work to survive, or go back to work, or do different, more difficult work. I can’t give you a one-size-fits-all answer here, but remember you must relax, and breathe, and have balance. Don’t forget you can join us on Monday evenings for relaxation teleclasses. It won’t help if you work so hard it makes you too sick to work.

- Megan

See-saw sign image courtesy of Tyger_Lyllie/Kat; storm image courtesy of BCMom/Anna.

Tags: , , , , , , ,
Posted in Current Affairs, Managing, Musings | Comments (2)

Learn to Manage your Life with Migraine:

The Six Keys to Manage Your Migraines and Take Back Your Life

You will also receive a subscription to the Free my Brain Migraine Management Newsletter.

We take your privacy seriously. We will never share your information with anyone

First Name:

That disclaimer thing...
Remember: nothing we do here is medical advice or treatment or is a substitute for medical advice or treatment. Get competent medical advice to learn more about your migraines, possible treatments and risks.

What's New on
Free My Brain:

Migraine Support Group Coaching
Register Now for 50% Off Your 1st Month!

Recent Comments