Today's Topic How to create fantasy and worldbuilding when pain or disease get in the way
My back started killing. I was having trouble standing. My wife stood over me; her frustration turned into tears. She had won. Her tears are the most pervasive argument I heard. I felt ashamed.
I had let my pride control me. I was a warrior, a scout for the US Army. I could work until my body broke. I did not believe that the point would ever come. I was 32; I still felt invincible. However, lying in bed watching my wife in tears that that point had come. I had broken myself.
If I can achieve in pain, anyone can
The next several years it all got worse. My knee when out, my pain spread from my left foot to my neck. And then I started losing my confidence and suffering from anxiety.
My anchor, Kristin got sick as well. She called me and told me she had cancer.
She could not work. Our non-mortgage debt grew to $220,000. We had trouble paying for our house. I had to beg for money to pay for our mortgage which was larger than our non-mortgage debt.
Then we learned the secrets that saved us from bankruptcy and saved our marriage
We were not defenseless, we had jobs that paid well, we loved each other deeply, and we are fighters. However, we had those things when we stumbled into our spiral. We knew we that more was needed. We first started to focus on our dreams, Kristin and I needed to look to our future together. It is what led us to create our Dream Catcher Assessment.
However, more on topic it prompts me to search desperately for ways to mitigate my chronic pain issues. I am not a doctor. However, I will share with you what worked for me.
Chronic pain and illness is not weakness it is a condition
Now, I am not a Pollyanna. I know there are not always cure and some of the lead to the worse possible condition of death. However, I am a fighter. I have dreams I am working towards and want to get to them.
I have accepted that the pain will never end at first. My medical issue will not cause death. However, death can come at any time and since I am a fighter I have embraced these conclusions and use it as fuel to keep me working even when the pain hurts the most.
The one thing you must worry about
As humans, we are all capable of manipulating people. We are best at manipulating ourselves. When you suffer from chronic pain or illness, you do have real limitations. We owe it to our dreams to create, we owe it to our loved ones, and we owe it to ourselves to learn our actual limitations and respect them. We cannot punish ourselves for not being able to achieve what we want.
However, we also need to make sure that when we feel like Kristin and I cannot do it, it is because we actually cannot do it. So often fear and anxiety can creep in and help hold us back from creating the fiction of our dreams.
Great News! Chronic pain and illness does not mean you cannot leave towards your dreams
Kristin and I have thrived since she got past her cancer. We have eliminated our non-mortgage debt. We have successfully created her accounting firm and Ingram Digital Media, Inc. I started working full time with this company in March of 2017.
We could not do it on our own. We worked with many doctors and professionals to help us. We researched and learned how to improve our physical and mental health. Kristin is layering in changes to help us live better lives.
It was not always easy. However, it is possible.
The 3 keys to creating fantasy and fiction when suffering from chronic pain or illness
Awareness, Preparation, and Execution are the key stratagems that have helped me move from a burnout veteran to a full-time author, podcaster, and educator.
The Awareness tips
- Test all your limiting assumptions (Talk to doctors and other professionals when needed)
- Never neglect meals, unless you are on a special diet.
- Eat three plates of food a day
- Drink water, early and often
- Realize the chronic conditions are cyclical. Track how you feel, it will help let you know what comes next
- Always be honest with yourself.
The Preparation tips
- Know what you need when you are getting worse, or in bed.
- Stretch as much as possible
- Have tools and supplies at hand.
- Ask for help if needed
The Execution tips
- Take the #15minute Challenge
- If you have an hour to work and do not feel up to it. Promise yourself to start. Work for 15 minutes if possible
- Take a picture of yourself starting and share it with me on Facebook.com/gardulstories or Twitter @JefferyWIngram
- I will share out the ones that are the best!
- Keep your humor!
- Don't punish yourself
- Remember the pain or problem will ebb and flow in life.
The surprise benefits of managing my pain
The first is a substantially increase in energy. I have more energy when I suffer from pain and lots more energy when I am not suffering from pain.
The bigger benefit for me was increased focus. It was another major issue of mine. However, that is a story for a different day.
Get the stories and hear the tips in this episode of the Worldbuilder’s Anvil Podcast
Listen to Michael and I as we go into this critical topic.
Podcast Show Flow
- Pain in the Jeff
- I am a fiction writer who lies, for the love of all that is good and holy seek advice from professionals before trying anything that affects your health
- Story of Michael’s pain
- Being honest with yourself
- Pain causes extreme pain, and assholeness can develop
- Remember you are not suffering alone
- Kristin’s Struggles
- Health, Mental and Physical, l before accomplishment
- Try and start if you can work
- 15-minute challenge
- Don't punish yourself if you cannot, be honest where you are at
- Never have more than three things you need to want to accomplish for a day, pain or not.
- Do not neglect meals and water
- Have tools and supplies at hand
- Ask for help if needed to get set up
- Chronic pain and illness is not weakness it is a condition
- KEEP YOUR HUMOR
The Worldbuilding Task for the Day
Take the #15Minute Challenge every day. If you have time to create start working. It will help you work in pain, sick, or work through your fear to complete your project.
The Real-world Task for the Day
If you need some help planning out your day. Check out the daily planner that I created from my other podcast. It is simple; it can be printed out every day and used. Focus more and get more done in less time.
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Please take a moment and comment below on this episode. I look forward to hearing from you about your Fantasy Worldbuilding adventures