Action Plan: To be in movement again

  1. Identify a personal goal that you would like to reach. What are the changes you want to create in your life?
    Example: “I want to take action in recovering from my alcohol addiction.”; “I want to create a healthy sleep routine.”

My goal is to start being physically active again and taking care of my body.

  1. Formulate your goal in a way that is specific and measurable. What does it look like when you’ve succeeded?
    Example: “I will reach my goal when I will hit 6 full months of sobriety”, “I want to be able to sleep 7hrs/week for at least 4 nights/week”.

I will reach my goal when I will maintain a routine for a month with:

  • A daily walk outside.
  • 4 sessions/week of somatic yoga at home.
  1. When do you want it to be done by? Make sure to define a healthy and realistic time line.
    Example: “In eight months, by 12/18/23.”

I want it to be done by the end of summer - September 23.

Start/basis: ~10k steps weekly. :headstone:

Milestones/personal highlights:

  • 03/05 48387 steps walked last week (special context: vacations)
  • 05-03: first week with >5500 steps daily o/

I took the Compass Test for the second time and my lowest score was once again Physical – with this time equal to Mental & Emotional. Both go in hand in my opinion, and it makes sense at this time of my life to finally try to reunite with this body in ways that would be more healing.

I was very active physically years and years ago, preparing for a marathon and all that stuff. But MH and health have been in the way since then, as well as being diagnosed with chronic illnesses. Especially two main obstacles have been in the way of being more physically active as a habit:

  • Been dealing now for 15- yrs with a very itchy dermographism that makes even just walking feel like torture if I’m not medicated to cover the symptoms – no treatment in sight;
  • Been dealing with 15- yrs as well with PMDD, which makes 2/4 weeks each month a repeated physical and emotional roller coaster to endure – no treatment in sight.

It feels like I’m only starting to grieve the possibility to live without these two conditions. I’ve been holding on to past dreams for a long time, and need to be more anchored in the present, instead of missing out on life.

I’ve learned and grown a lot in understanding how my body holds lots of painful memories and has its own way to release them. Being aware of my physicality is unpleasant and I generally do anything to avoid it. This is a huge area of my life that needs restoration and healing, and is likely to be as well a physical as an emotional process.

Now that I understand more why this body works the way it does, that I also have a professional and personal support system, I feel more equipped to finally start a chapter like this one.

Circumstances are painful/frustrating, but my body isn’t my enemy. I’m ready to commit to taking care of it.


From: DepressedMuffin 2

Hi Micro, its understandable that people will usually look back to their life and start thinking about their past. Its also a good thing for you to realize that you should focus on present. There will be a lot of people supporting you on your way, including us. Hope everything will be the best for you!

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From: Mystrose

Hi Micro, First, I just want to say that you are an inspiration to me because you’ve been thru some terrible things in your life and having chronic illnesses, you keep fighting and using your resources. That’s really awesome and actually gives me the courage to keep fighting too. It sounds like you have a pretty good plan and just remember that the community is always here for you to help you along the way. We love you and want nothing but the best for you. You matter ~Mystrose

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From: Lisalovesfeathers

Dearest Micro, Thank you for posting all of that, it must have taken a lot of thought, a lot of prep and a lot of strength to open up about all the physical problems that you are trying to manage and live a life at the same time. I truly hope that this plan works for you, I want you to know that we are all here to be your support, your cheering squad and your big fluffy pillow as an when required and please also remember that on those days that maybe things don’t go quite as planned, its ok! just start again the next day. You have so much love behind you. Love as always. Lisa. xxx

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From: Mamadien

Micro, Thank you so much for being so open and so honest with how you are doing both physically and emotionally. It really is difficult to deal with chronic illness, especially when it is so debilitating and you have no way to stop it. Thank you for being honest, again. There are so many of us here who have chronic illnesses and it’s hard to commit to being healthy when your body betrays you so badly. Yes, our mental/emotional health goes hand in hand in that recovery process. Know that you indeed have a community who is ready to walk through this time with you and will cheer you on. And if it doesn’t go as planned, know that it doesn’t mean failure. It just means reformulating your action plan. Thank you for sharing and inspiring the rest of us to take better care of ourselves. You are so loved my friend.

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This is brilliant.

A question I’m curious about is how do you create a plan that works WITH your body, in kindness, to gently bring some life back into this area?

What old agreements about your body or old expectations might you need to let go of or break up with to start afresh with a kind position in your heart towards yourself on this journey?

What is the first win you’ll be able to celebrate, and how will you celebrate it?

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A question I’m curious about is how do you create a plan that works WITH your body, in kindness , to gently bring some life back into this area?

To me it’s all about the intentions set, and being flexible with my expectations. I always failed at developing routines before (unless by toughing it up in unhealthy ways) because it’d go like this:

    1. Having a blast during the first days/week, high motivation
    1. First disturbance in the system I set (more tired that day, new external stressors, physical symptoms) => I decide to take a day off
    1. A day off becomes 2, then 3, etc. => I end up in an “all-or-nothing” mindset and give up.

So I need to:

  • Not having a day without taking in account how I feel emotionally and physically before taking action
  • Not having a day with doing absolutely nothing – something is better than nothing instead of all or nothing mindset

Something that I’ve learned over time is that planning something as if every single day is going to be the same just doesn’t work for me. I can’t have the same expectation all the time. So I’d like to try out a system that was once shared with me, which is to have to choose between 3 options each time I’m going to walk or do yoga, each option being a level of difficulty. For the goals I’ve set it will look like:

  • Low – Principle of “something is better than nothing”
    => Walk = Minimum of 10 min walk
    => Yoga = Minimum of 5min of yoga/ 1 posture
  • Intermediate – Principle of “don’t underestimate, but also don’t oversweat”
    => Walk = Complete a 30 min walk
    => Yoga = Complete a short yoga session (10-15 min)
  • High – Principle of “embrace the momentum”
    => Walk = reach 5500 steps.
    => Yoga = Complete a long yoga session (25+min).

Before each activity I’ll just have a mini check-in with myself/meditate to be aware of how I feel and choose an option accordingly. I’m also curious to ask myself during those moments, if the limits I feel are physical or emotional. From there, there will be lots of combinations possible. I’ve set a specific time for walks, and one for yoga, which will work as a break mid-day, and closure after work. I want to keep track of these and see if I learn from it, because it really goes in hand with what I’m exploring in therapy. Like seeing at the end of an activity: did I overestimate, underestimate, or chose the right option? I want to get better at 1- acknowledging my body’s needs/sensations, etc. , 2- respecting its limits and embracing its abilities. Basically, seeing over time: am I getting better at idenfying what I can/can’t do and making decisions accordingly.

What is the first win you’ll be able to celebrate, and how will you celebrate it?

Tough question! Celebrating is always hard for me, but it is a key part of this process. Reading your question, I think I will do the following on a weekly basis:

  • Edit the first post here to share a weekly milestone (new reach or cumulated, doesn’t matter).
  • Pick one item in a list I’d create – List of activities and things I want to do, but that I’ve been constantly pushing away because joy-creativity-play are almost never a priority or inducing guilt. I have very simple tastes, but things that are “normal” for most can be turned into self-care practices to me, and enjoyable rewards in some way. For example even just going outside and taking some fancy coffee in a bar while reading a book is a big “treat yourself” thing to me, and something I do really enjoy. So that would be the spirit of this list. I’m all about gamifying things like this (action plan).

I need to be overly generous with myself when it comes to celebrating and acknowledging, even if I overdo it at first, because it is uncomfortable and unfamiliar territory to me, while knowing rationally that it is okay.

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I deleted my own topic yesterday, but getting back to it because shame and giving up were not part of the contract. The reason is because I was spiraling a lot. I’m at the peak of PMDD symptoms today, and I’m so tired of this. Had 3 hours of sleep last night as I couldn’t fall asleep because of racing thoughts. Same as the night before. It’s the usual, and so far nothing helps, except taking strong medications that also knock me out during the day, so I can’t function or think properly.

I woke up this morning exhausted and unable to get back to sleep. But also too tired to do anything. Although I ended up needing some fresh air and having a walk outside. This week, I completely missed out on this goal. It’s so hard to describe how it is to experience this every month. And then I can’t even enjoy a walk because of this crazy itchy skin. I’m not upset at my body anymore, but I’m so frustrated with the situation. Why do I have to deal with this sh*t. For both conditions, doctors are unable to tell why it’s there – only hypothesis. They also have no idea how to help, besides ruining myself with skin creams, essentials oils, vitamins and whatnot that barely change anything.

I’m turning 30 this week end, and I can’t help thinking of the time when my partner and I would like to have our own family. We mentioned it at times. How would I be supposed to carry a pregnancy to term without any of the medications that I’m taking now and help me reach a bare level of function. Am I just condemned to be even more depressed and stuck to a bed for almost a year? I can’t wrap my head around that. And certainly not around the idea of getting my ability to have children removed in order to have some relief in the present time.

This probably seems a bit off topic, although each time I try to be in movement, each time I face this body’s limitations, reminders of traumas, I’m brought back to all of these big questions and helplessness. And gosh it’s a struggle to handle this while being emotionally on edge. I can’t help thinking that I understand why every year there are people who take their life away because of these conditions. It’s exhausting and lonely.

Sorry for the impromptu venting post. I’m glad for the walk today and it’s a tiny victory in itself. Just letting out all the tears as usual. Until next month, and the one after that. Sigh.

Micro, PMDD Ugh!! Oh the frustration of our body sabotaging us month after month after month. You know it’s, coming, you try to prepare for it, you hope that it won’t happen this month, but it does anyway. That internal feeling of not being able to control your own emotions, crying, ranting, everything feels more intense for what seems like no good reason. I feel that frustration because I went through this when I was younger. I absolutely hate that medical science hasn’t figured out how to manage these symptoms of what should be normal body functioning.

I’m glad you are not giving up on you. Keep taking good and gentle care of you. I hope sleep returns for you tonight in a way that leaves you feeling rested. I know that you are doing all that you know to do for both conditions. My hope is that you find something that works better than what you have now. Until then, please keep taking gentle care of you. You are so very precious and very much loved. You don’t have to walk this alone. ~Mama


Thank you so much, Mama. You said it perfectly. I’m sorry you had to struggle with this as well – not only experiencing is exhausting, but staying alone with it is even worse. I appreciate you for sharing, especially in a world that constantly pushes us to feel like it must be taboo to even mention it. There’s comfort in knowing that I’m not alone, even though I wish it just never existed at all for anyone.

Today is over, which is good news.

Thank you again for your kind words. You are such a treasure. <3

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one day i hope, i’m someone you’d met.
to know you are not alone is comforting and scaring at the same time often, for me. to know people care for me,
to know people are there for me, people care for you, people are there for you, feels like a burden even if we are
not. we always tell that others so easy, in the end our own struggle is the same.
we all were once the same note. we all live life different, but also the same. what makes us the same, is what makes
us different at the same time. our being.
i am so grateful that you are here, that you exist and share all of this with us. you are incredibly strong and kind.
you keep being an inspiration for others, you took on your journey with courage, you are brave when time makes
life dark.
keep going and life will give you back what you deserve. all the beauty this world has to offer. a journey of life is not
meant to walk alone until the end, on our journey we meet people that will help us walking when we are tired.
you are loved and you matter :purple_heart: :face_in_clouds:
you are to be held, not to be missed


Just a very quick and short update on the initial Action Plan: got my first week with >5500 steps walked daily. Not as active as I would like to be yet, but happy about the way things have been progressing. It’s getting sunnier outside, which helps soooo much too.

Feeling like I’m slowly but surely getting into building a habit and feeling like it’s missing if I don’t do it for a day, even if it’s just about getting fresh air outside for a short time. A slow but needed change. <3

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Hey there Micro,

That’s awesome! You’ve tripled your baseline consistently for a week!

I’m proud of your massive improvement and am confident in your abilities to continue getting your steps up. I also am glad to hear that it’s nice and sunny – that’s great!

Keep us updated, and thanks for sharing this amazing news!
<3 Tuna


Hey, Micro!
That sounds great. Really, props!
We’ll be rooting for you!