The Pain Toolkit Quiz

#3 Pacing. Learn to pace yourself

Pacing daily activities is one of the key tools to self managing your pain.

You need to begin to pace your work and also other everyday activities. Did you recognise yourself from the pain cycle? You tend to over do things, or rest too much and become inactive and lose fitness. Pacing in short is: taking a break before you need it throughout the day. But how can you remember to pace yourself?

Remember the old saying … “How do you eat an elephant?”

One bite at a time! Pacing is carrying out activities one bite at a time and not tackling all of them at once! For examples of pacing daily activities and other useful resources, why not visit our resources page.

What The Experts Say

Pete Says:
I bet you're like me, an over-doer, doing more than you have to and trying to keep up with others. All this does is cause endless setbacks. We have to do everyday things a little different. Pacing is the key. Listen to what this guy says about pacing and also others here. Listen here for more about pacing and read here for pacing for beginners.
Frances Says:
Being an over-doer may have worked in the past and was quite a useful way to get on in life and tackle stresses, got things done. Pain systems hate being over stressed, over achieving and prefer a more kindly balance of activity and breaks or relaxation. Stress makes more adrenaline, stops opioids, soothing chemicals to lessen pain and tires out muscles, joints, body and mind. Change a word in your thinking, from “ must do to might or could do” and plan a steady pace. You will be surprised!
Bronnie Says:
Pacing is the hardest thing ever! It means deciding what’s important not just right now, but what’s important over the day and the week. You can use use “natural chunks” of activity if you don’t like clock-watching. You might get up for a stretch at each ad break when watching TV; do the housework room by room; changing from sitting to standing for every phone call. The golden rule? Do no more on a good day than a bad day; do no less on a bad day than you would on a good day
Linda Says:
I'd always been used to pushing myself – I was never without something to do! Whilst learning to pace myself was tricky, I feel more in tune with my body it’s helped avoid "peaks and troughs' in pain levels.
Mike Says:
Pacing is not about giving in. It is part of a realisation and acceptance that things might need to change for a while whilst your body gets used to increasing amounts of activities. It’s helpful to think, TO IT NOT THROUGH IT, and remember, cakes bake best when the oven is at the right gas mark.
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