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Keeping motivated throughout your recovery

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Full of excuses? Yeah, we understand. We’ve all been there, stuck with a damaged bone, muscle or tendon convincing ourselves that we can’t push on until we’re feeling better. Fortunately for you, the body is far more resilient than you may think and with a support all you have to do is convince your mind of the feats you are capable of! In our last post, we covered ways that you can keep on top of your mental attitude while injured and how to remain positive. In this entry, we will have a more in-depth look at staying motivated and pressing on at a time where it is easiest just to give up.

Let’s not be too hasty!

Before we get into this, be honest with yourself. How severe is your injury? If it’s bad, do yourself a favour and take the time off to rest. I know, it’s frustrating. For many of us, being held up at home doing nothing the epitome of disaster, but your body is a brilliant machine and will work tirelessly to restore you to health.

But if you’re capable of getting out of bed in the morning, read on!

Talking about getting out of bed...

This can be the biggest challenge in the morning. Sometimes you wake up and your entire existence just refuses to comply. All you want to do is lay there and let the day slip away. But you have things to do! You can’t allow yourself to remain dormant for hours in the morning letting the stress of your procrastination eat you up! So, let’s get you on your feet! Different techniques work for different people, so I’m going to list off a few things you can try to get out of the sheets.

Move your alarm clock

Try leaving your alarm clock on the other side of the room to where you sleep, somewhere out of reach. This means when you are rudely awoken by the device, you will physically have to get out of bed to turn it off. Once you’re on your two feet, you have already fought half the battle, just don’t go back to bed…

Think about the perfect you

We all have different ambitions. Some of us want to be wealthy travellers, while others would be content in a room full of pizza. Imagine yourself having achieved all your dreams. Now think about what you could do today to be one step closer towards that end goal. Dwell on those thoughts and think about how you’re wasting time in bed when you could be doing something productive! Tell yourself that you’re sick of laying around wasting time and that you must get up! If you consciously think it the body will follow suit.

Have a cold shower

Especially in winter, there isn’t much more unappealing than a cold shower in the morning! But that’s the exact reason you should do it! That cold shock you get when the water starts pouring is bound to snap you into wide-awake mode! Research also shows that there is a tonne of additional health benefits to cold showering as well! It’s said to improve blood circulation, which is great for your cardiovascular system and can speed up your recovery time! If you’re feeling the injury blues, cold water is proven to stimulate the brains “blue spot”, which is responsible for the release of noradrenaline (norepinephrine), a chemical is usually associated with the “fight or flight” response but can also help mitigate injury misery.

Indulge in Motivational Stories

Hearing about other people's success and fights with their problems can really help you get a wider understanding of where you are with your injury and what you need to do to push through. Sometimes you come across problems other people have dealt with and you realise how minor your injury is in comparison! This can really help you see your situation from a different point of view. “If they got through that, I can easily get through this”! Open another tab and search for some motivational stories and quotes, they’ll be sure to put you into the right mindset!

Reward yourself

Set a goal, and if you achieve that goal, reward yourself. Set small, obtainable tasks that you can achieve regularly. When you reach them your brain automatically rewards you with a hit of dopamine. This chemical has a powerful, positive effect on your mood and will motivate you to push yourself even harder! The act of completing small tasks boosts self-esteem, develops positive thinking and improves your organisation, time management and goal setting.

One final tip

You’re probably not in the mindset to give many of these methods a try, so here is one last tip I use that can help put you in the right frame of mind. Think about something positive you want to do, no matter how unappealing it may initially seem. Think about the good will come from it, then count down from 5.

5… 4… 3… 2… 1… GO!

Concentrating on that countdown frees the mind of hesitation for a brief window of time. It’s a form of metacognition or a way of tricking the mind so you can focus on your greater goals without your brain bombarding you with negative thoughts. If you physically act on what you want to do within those 5 seconds, you will activate a part of the brain called the prefrontal cortex, the purpose of which is to help with tasks such as decision making, planning and working towards your goals. This snaps you out of your “auto-pilot” so you can start getting to work. If you want to do more research into this method, we have given all the links to the sources used in the article at the bottom of the page.

So, there you have it!

There are our top tips for pushing through your injury! It may be difficult at first, but if you can master the mind you can achieve anything! If you have any questions or want to keep up to date with our posts, feel free to like our Facebook page and engage with us there! Good luck!


Sources:

Mel Robbins - The science behind five second rule

Mamta Sethi - Benefits of Rewarding Yourself

Kara Rogers - Functions of Norepinephrine

Brett & Kate McKay - The James Bond Shower: A Shot of Cold Water for Health and Vitality

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