Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain LIFE Summer 2013, Issue 9 - Page 4

From the heart and desk of the Publisher Shifting a Mindset Are you more likely to approach things from a fixed mindset or a growth mindset? Large corporations like Target, eBay, Twitter, Kaiser Permanente, General Mills and Ford Motor Company have embraced mindfulness training within their organizations. They know that investing in the well-being and wholeness of their employees pays dividends. This 30,000 foot view can be lassoed to a personal level. Daily we make executive decisions, managing ourselves as a small-unit company. Personal trials can create openings to try something new. In March of 2007 during the height of my explosion of fibromyalgia symptoms, I recall understanding my need to separate my emotional, intellectual, and physical components. There was no turning back the clock to a time without FM. I had to find new ways to live, and the only direction to go was forward. A zen parable illustrates: A man riding on a horse passes a man on the street. The man on the street asks the rider where he is going. The man responds, “I don’t know. You should ask the horse.” This parable - about emotions taking us for a ride - reflects our lack of awareness about being dragged around by our emotions rather than having emotional intelligence. What is emotional intelligence? “The ability to monitor one’s own and others’ feelings and emotions, to discriminate among them and to use this information to guide one’s thinking and actions.” (Solovey and Mayer, 1990) As our healthcare system changes, there is more expectation of people with FM and chronic pain illnesses to gather new tools for better self-management of their illnesses. Understanding what drives our daily decisions about self-man- agement is empowering. One valuable tool is mindfulness, or intentional awareness, which creates understanding. Many available methods and approaches can aid us in learning how to filter mind chatter from deep-seated beliefs (that may or not be serving us well) and gain emotional intelligence. Using the same set of tools to fix the problem doesn’t work. You’re the CEO of your company. You’re worth the selfinvestment. NFMCPA President and Editor-in-Chief with over 25,000 people in the FM and chronic pain community Follow us on Facebook to connect 4  Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Life Summer 2013 Connect with Your Community