Monday, November 1, 2010

Question of the Week: How Do You Plan for Special Events?

Date BookImage by anselm23 via Flickr
I'm afraid this is going to be one of my posts where I talk about a good idea that I clearly struggle to implement regularly...

First I should clarify. We all plan for special events, like birthdays, holidays and vacations. Maybe we create a packing list or a menu or go shopping for a present. But when you have chronic illness, planning for special events takes on a whole new dimension, because traveling, shopping, cooking and decorating use a lot of energy.

So now I need to plan for allocating my energy before, during and after a special event. And to be honest, doing anything outside my normal, daily routine is now defined as a special event.

Thankfully the online CFIDS & Fibromyalgia Self-Help group introduced me to a concept that makes planning for special events much easier:

The key to filling out this form is to allocate plenty of time to tasks and adding lots and lots (and lots) of extra rest time.

So, if I had been smart, two weeks before Halloween I would have worked out my costume for handing out candy and run my Halloween related errands. The following week, I would have spread out decorating the house over a long weekend, with rest days scheduled before and after. I would have set up for candy dispensing at least a day in advance and spend most of Halloween resting before and after the main evening event.

I am spending this week staying home and resting to make up for my poor planning over the last couple of weeks. I am skirting the edge of a flare-up and doing everything I can to insert extra self-care activities into this week to prevent one from happening. Let's see if I can avoid one altogether.

Next time, I need to remember this form and complete one in advance to prevent a setback or worsening my symptoms. After all, I'm not going to pass up on fun just because I have chronic illness. I know that if I plan ahead I can do these things with minimized impact on my chronic pain and fatigue.

So do you plan ahead? After reading this post, will you give it a try or give it another try? (You can download this form by going to CFIDS & Fibromyalgia Self-Help.) Please add your feedback to this post or head over to the Oh My Aches and Pains! Facebook page to join the discussion.

Creative Commons License
Enhanced by Zemanta

Creative Commons License

Like this post? Then please...

Submit it to your favorite social sites.

Share it with PrintFriendly alternatives.

Print Friendly and PDF
Related Posts with Thumbnails


Jane of Australia said...

for many years I have practised this: on the bad days plan - on the good days do.
25 years ago I started using a diary (planner) with a weeks view over the 2 pages so I could see what I was doing all week at a glance and not overload myself.
I was raising 2 little children alone and had a busy volunteer position. I found the day before and day after rest schedule worked well.
I also developed the abilty to apply the carpenters rule which is measure twice cut once.
so that I had already well and truely thought something through,considered all the what ifs and what thens so that when I actually got to the doing my energy was used best, and best used.
I became very good at sequential scheduling so I could leave the house and go do the school drop off then to the lirbrary the supermarket etc and home, usually a big circle.
I knew where the undercover parking was for the cold and hot days; where all the public restrooms were, etc etc
I became very resourceful.
I also learnt to overcome disapointments. To be a great cheer squad for my kids even if I wasnt there due to some last minute unexpected health-problem. But I always had someone T'd up to step in incase...
Will you share with us your action plan for Thanksgiving?
Great post.

klbrowser said...

I like the idea of a form, but I unfortunately would probably misplace it and waste valuable energy looking for it and then trying to remember what was on it, lol. If I know I am going to travel, I have to start figuring out the particulars months in advance because my ailments are so complicated that I need to ensure I can be accommodated.

BTW, I enjoy this blog and would like to add it to my Links list on my own blog. Would this be all right? Please take a peek a my blog first to make sure you're ok with it:

Jamee @ A New Kind of Normal said...

I will be hosting Christmas at our house for the first time ever this year so you'd better believe that I'm planning ahead! I've downloaded the Christmas Planner from Tip Junkie to help keep me organized and keep my spoons in check!