Monday, 20 March 2017

Me, my identity and I

This blog comes from the reflections from a lecture I delivered earlier this week to medical students. I didn’t feel it went very well, and while reflecting on it on the train home, I wanted to blog to clarify my thoughts on it, and prove to myself (I hope) that I can be articulate and clear!

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

When medications are necessary but not sufficient…

I love the question “I’m really interested to hear what things you have been doing or have tried already to manage your [symptom]?”

I always share it with medical students when I am lecturing, and use it a lot in my role as a self-management coach, when supporting individuals. But recently, the answers I have received in conversations locally have made me question our approach and thinking as a system to managing pain. It was summed up for me in a conversation I had with someone who wanted to manage their pain better. I asked what they had done already to try and manage the pain and a list of medications followed. After asking them about what other ideas they might have about how to manage the pain, I asked if I could share some ideas that other people have found helpful. After they agreed, I mentioned things like breathing and relaxing techniques and pacing, as they hadn’t been brought up in conversation so far. With all the ideas summed up, I asked what the person’s thoughts were, and their answer left me shocked…

I don’t think the suggestions you made will work, because if they did work my doctor would have suggested them to me already!