Staying mentally fit during recuperation
Whether it’s due to accident, injury or some other factor, having to set aside your normal active lifestyle for a period of recuperation can be deeply frustrating. It can be very easy to sink into despondency and bad mental habits. These tips will help you stay strong and mentally active while you recover.
Visualisation: Research has shown that visualisation can be a very powerful technique for supporting your recovery. In studies, subjects who visualised themselves taking exercise or practicing their usual sport during a period of recuperation showed less muscle atrophy and were in better shape when they were able to take up their sport again. Close your eyes and imagine that you’re going through your normal exercise routine or sports practice. Do this for an hour or two a day and your recovery could be noticeably faster.
Stay in touch with friends, family and collegues: When you’re recuperating, it can be tempting to shut yourself away from everything that reminds you of the activities you can’t enjoy right now. This is a bad idea, as it will tend to lower your mood. Invite friends to visit, phone a family member or use social media to stay in touch with your circle of contacts. You’ll feel less isolated and more motivated.
Take up a new hobby: Something that occupies your mind and challenges you intellectually will help you stay on form while you recover. Language learning, music or a short course in a topic that interests you are all good options. Another great tactic is to take up a mentally stimulating and challenging game, preferably one with a social element. Inviting friends round for a board game or a game of poker is an excellent way to maintain your social contacts while also keeping your wits in tip-top form. If that’s not an option, you could try playing online. Chess, card games and roleplay games are just a click away.
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