Feeling Upbeat with Sandra Godley on BBC Coventry and Warwickshire Radio
At the beginning of August, I was invited to share my thoughts on Self Care on the amazing Wednesday night Upbeat show. Only just getting round to writing this as things have been mega hectic!
It was a challenge for me as I had just finished a three-day training course with the amazing Thistle Foundation, so brain fog and energy levels were going crazy! I got off to a shaky start but soon warmed into the flow of conversation thanks to Sandra’s gentle questions. Tune in at 1:09:10.
I was able to share how the Feel Good Community and Feel Good Ambassadors started. If you would like to find out more have a look at The Story Of Feel Good
We hope the Feel Good Ambassadors can inspire people to Feel Good together no matter what life throws at us! If you would like to become a Feel Good Ambassador join the Facebook group.
I am rare!
I spoke about my rare illness: Symptomatic Tarlov Cyst Disease, although I forgot how rare we actually are (a great example of how brain fog interrupts your thoughts!). So here is the actual statistics! 4% of the world’s population will have Tarlov Cysts, but only 1% of them will have Symptomatic Tarlov Cysts. The medical profession are told they are incidental findings, however, I am living proof they are not. It is hard to get a diagnosis because of this.
In 2014, I had open back surgery at UCLH, by one of the only specialists in the UK who treats them. Although I no longer have the cysts the pesky buggers caused nerve damage and the operation created scar tissue both of which mean I will live with the symptoms for the rest of my life. I was also diagnosed with ME or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Another misunderstood illness. I hope sharing my story can raise awareness for both of these conditions.
Self Care Tips
I am definitely NOT an expert in Self Care, but I have tried lots of different things to try and master my self-care game. Here are my top ten tips, going on my own personal experience. For a more in-depth list take a look at 10 ways you can combat the stress of chronic illness and 6 tips to help you to stay positive
- Getting together with friends
- Getting involved with a community
- Take 15 minutes each day to do something that helps you to feel calm
- Write things in a diary – make self-care a priority
- Doodle every day!
- Focus on the things you can do
Self Care Social
I started working for Grapevine Coventry and Warwickshire in February 2018 as a Community Organiser for people with long-term health conditions. We are working on bringing people together to think about how we can best support each other. We listen to people’s concerns and ideas and help them to develop them. We are currently creating a culture of connected self-care in Coventry called the Self Care Social.
My sister, Mel, started the Swim and Tonic movement to inspire her to become more active. It has developed into:
A movement of people who want to connect by swimming in pools, lidos, quarries, lakes, rivers and seas. Equal provision is also made for those who don’t swim; the ‘Tonic’ in the form of socialising around water and eating cake. There is no pressure to get in.
If you would like to join in then they have a closed Facebook group
Back in the day
We spoke about why things seem to be harder for people today. I shared my thoughts on how strong community spirit was when I was younger, but due to the fast-paced lives we have today community is often neglected. Working with Grapevine has made me realise just how important having strong circles of support is. Developing community networks can make a huge difference to your life and best of all it doesn’t have to take too much time!
A huge thank you!
Thanks to Sandra Godley and the BBC team for having me on the show! I feel honoured to have been asked to speak about such an important topic.
Keep in touch
If you have an idea for connected self-care get in touch and we can have a chat about how we could make it a possibility! Sign up to our monthly newsletter to hear the latest #FeelGoodCom news. Would love to hear your thoughts on self-care drop me a message in the comment box…