(Extreme fatigue leaves you unable to cope with even basic daily tasks. Pamela Rose Coaching Life Rescue Programme helps you manage your body and mindset so you can cope with your condition and feel life is worth living again. Click here to book a no obligation chat.)
So should you embrace pacing?
The quick answer is Yes! If you’re struggling with extreme fatigue and have conducted any sort of reading or research online, you’ll have picked up that pacing is mentioned over and over again. And there’s a good reason for this - it’s one of the core approaches that anyone with fatigue should master. I’ve seen this time and time again, both personally with my own recovery journey, and professionally through my work as a Fatigue Coach.
But there’s not a lot of information online about *how* to pace. There’s lots of theory about the benefits, and even some of the high-level elements that you should incorporate - lots of rest times, spread activity across your day etc. etc. But very little to suggest how you should approach this.
Unfortunately, there’s probably a good reason for this: one-size-fits-all approaches can really only help so much, because everyone’s lifestyles, symptoms, and journeys to date are different. Plus, there’s the fact that actually getting into the detail and shaping your ideal plan can be difficult - not just because it’s exhausting to apply all of that research and thinking, but because it involves having to accept and include the necessary amount of structure and discipline that’s required.
This is why my own Pacing Programme works so well. I take the experience I’ve gained from helping many people cope better with extreme fatigue and I guide you through a pacing approach that has worked for them and can work for you. But I don’t just explain the theory, we roll our sleeves up and start to shape your plan together during a 121 pacing workshop.
So, what are the key elements that any pacing approach should contain?
- Simplicity - It needs to be simple to follow. Anything too complicated is either going to mean you stop even trying after a day or two, or it becomes time-consuming which is using valuable energy…all rather counter-productive for something that’s meant to be helping!
- Quickly beneficial - you need to be able to adopt it quickly, using insight from your journey so far to get started
- Adjustable - this is not only about it being tailorable to each person, this is about an approach that allows for - indeed encourages - regular reviews and refinements
- Satisfying - you want to see the progress that you’re making! There’s nothing like being able to look back and see the improvements you’ve achieved. It makes you feel great, and is hugely motivating
- Adaptable - your pacing approach needs to be able to react to things that come in unexpectedly, giving you a way to manage this that is measured and avoids you taking on too much
- Buildable - most importantly, it needs to be future-proof. Your approach needs to be scalable, allowing you to see when it’s safe to start adding in more activity, but also provide a clear way to manage going back to work, or achieve other key events, in a safe and predictable way that you can be confident will be successful.
My approach ticks all of these boxes - but only if you follow it and apply it consistently. So the final very important point I’d like to make about embracing a pacing approach is that it will feel difficult and possibly a little overly clunky at first. Unfortunately, you can’t achieve the benefits of pacing, without having to accept that your life will feel a lot more planned, structured and measured for a while.
If your pacing approach feels easy, and you’re hardly having to change how you approach your days, then you’re probably not doing it thoroughly enough!!
So, I encourage you to pick an approach, and throw yourself into it. The sooner you start, the sooner you’ll feel the benefits, and the sooner it’ll get easier and more second-nature to plan each day.
I wish you every success in getting to grips with pacing, and if you’d like any help with that please get in touch.
Pamela Rose Coaching - helping you cope with chronic fatigue to regain a life worth living again
Click here to find out more about my approach to Pacing: https://www.pamelarose.co.uk/pacing