Hi there! It’s Peg again and some folks liked and commented on my previous Midwestern-pitch that came out when I started to talk about my Self-Motivation. It happened to be linked to 1 of the 13 common mistakes Post-Stroke Survivors tend to make during their recovery stage. So I decided to start with it again, because I am going to address another 1 of the 13 common mistakes Saebo mentioned and that is Consistency!
I’ve been much more than fairly consistent all my life...consistent with my school work and grades, consistent with my professional life, consistent with my family life and marriage, consistent with my friends. You have had a chance to gather that from my earlier posts. And if you have known me, well, I hope you have come to count on, and rely on, that consistency. It is what I am seeing that certain people are missing - some have mentioned it to me and some do not know how to bring the topic up for discussion. (That is actually what I want to address in my next "blog." I want to tell you what I think now about conversation - what it "is," "what was missing," "what is missing," and "what it isn't.")
Well, this health/medical issue that I have been dealt (this subdural hematoma) has put a crimp in my strive to always be consistent with the things I do in my life. But, I am still doing everything I possibly can to be consistent with everything I CAN still do for now. And as each day goes by, I am adding more things to the list, whether they are small things or not, they are still added to my list! Most of the time I am consistently doing the things I need to do for myself (that is, to make myself get healthier and stronger and less dependent on others).
Mainly, I am very consistent with my therapy/exercise. I make sure that I do the therapy multiple times per day and I change the exercises up as needed to get what I need. And today I read an article that Tom found and shared with me that I want to share with you. And, I am sharing those therapies with you here!!
From The New York Times, 10-24-18, by Gretchen Reynolds (please read the entire article, but here are some of the highlights)...
10 minutes of mild, almost “lazy,” exercise can immediately alter how certain parts of the brain communicate and coordinate with one another and improve memory function, according to an encouraging new neurological study. The findings suggest that exercise does not need to be lengthy or intense to benefit the brain. The effects can begin far more quickly than many of us might expect. We already know that exercise can change our brains and minds. The evidence is extensive and growing. Multiple studies with mice and rats have found that when these animals run on wheels/treadmills, they develop more new brain cells than if they remain sedentary. Many of the new cells are clustered in the hippocampus, a portion of the brain that is essential for memory creation and storage. The active animals also perform better on tests of learning and memory. Again, retrain the brain!!
However, similar experiments are not possible in people. But some past studies have shown that people who exercise regularly tend to have a larger, healthier hippocampus than those who do not, especially as they grow older. Even one bout of exercise, research suggests, can help most of us to focus and learn better than if we sit still.
By the way, I am still keeping consistent with “chores” around the house to make sure I keep physically active and keep my brain engaged. For example, I am doing most of the dishes (not the paper dishes and bowls as I make sure those get thrown away when I am finished using them). I do regular dishes and silverware in both the sink and the dishwasher, as required. I need to use my left hand and I am extremely careful with sharp objects such as knives or heavy items such as the inner pot of the crock-pot (I have Tom handle those).
I am also consistently doing the laundry - putting my worn/used clothes and towels in my laundry basket daily, washing them every other day (or as needed) in the washing machine with the Tide pod detergent and appropriate washing machine settings (water temp, etc.). I am then transferring them to the dryer when done (unless they need to be hung to dry, like my bras). Then I consistently fold and/or hang up my clothes from the dryer. I am forcing myself to use my right arm/hand more and more each time that I fold/hang clothes from the dryer. I cannot yet use the iron (well, not use it that much, though I am slowly trying) so I need to be very consistent about removing my clothes from the dryer as soon as they are ready. I need to hang them well on a hanger and be sure to secure them with a button or zipper. This is GREAT PRACTICE!! And, it is more things that are serving well to retrain my brain AND regain my independence!!
Be sure to check out my Instagram at “poststrokepeg.”
God Bless You, Peg
"Don't be pushed by your problems. Be led by your dreams." -- Ralph Waldo Emerson
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