BY CATHLIN FITZGERALD (PT & DPT)
This month we’re providing good quality information about alternative treatments. I want to focus on sports psychology, specifically sports psychology while recovering from an injury, but it’s important to emphasize that this should be considered a concurrent treatment–NOT an alternative!
I read the book Rebound by Carrie Jackson Cheadle and Cindy Kuzma, and I cannot recommend it enough. It was recommended to me professionally, but ironically I found the time to read it while I was out of the office after knee surgery in January. It breaks things down in a digestible way and provides mental drills at the end of each chapter to develop strong mental skills. The book resonated with me in both a professional and personal way; I recognized some strategies I already use with clients, learned a lot of new ones, and recognized a lot of my own mental struggles during my recovery after knee surgery.
I want to share two ideas from this book that you can implement immediately. There are so many great ideas that it was hard to choose just two, but these two are simple and take minimal effort: celebrate all victories and set motivational reminders to your future self.
The first idea, to celebrate all victories, means really basking in the glory of making progress. First morning getting out of bed without limping from your plantar fasciitis? Is the first time successfully doing toe yoga? Ran five minutes without pain? Celebrate! Your celebration could be anything from a solo dance party to your favorite song, to a celebratory cupcake, or a round of champagne. Go as big or small as you want–the point is to celebrate and find the wins along the way. This also applies to the less tangible victories, such as a time you persevered through uncertainty, fear, or discomfort. Maybe you stuck with your run/walk plan (as prescribed by your trusty PT, of course) despite the fear of experiencing a setback. Celebrate!
The second idea, to set motivational reminders for your future self, is so easy! Set a reminder on your phone for a random day and time in the future with something about how awesome you are, a meaningful mantra, or something that makes you laugh. Examples from Rebound include “You ready? Who do you want to be today?”, “Your ACL is super sexy”, and “You’re getting stronger every day”. The authors also make a great suggestion to ask friends to put motivational reminders on random days on your phone.
I want to hear about how you implement these strategies! Let me know what amazing ideas for celebrations and motivational reminders you come up with… and how they make you feel! Go read the book to get all of the ideas and have a better understanding of the mental and emotional recovery process. Worth noting: I have zero connection to this book or the authors, I just thought it was a great resource.