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The Road to Recovery

By Christina Bruni

The Road to Recovery

What I know:
The diagnosis of schizophrenia can be a trauma itself that you need to recover from.  In order to get to the place of recovery you have to grapple with the truth that you have something you need to recover from.

Years of denial will lead to lost opportunities, damaged physical and mental health, and create a much harder row to hoe in your life. 

Only: for most of us denial is the norm, is actually a coping mechanism when the truth is too painful to bear.  Often we do not come to acceptance of our illness easily nor willingly.  It is our changed circumstance - and a continued cycle of hardship - that forces us to examine the things that aren't working.

You might not want to deal with it when it happens yet eventually you'll be forced to.  The sooner you accept that you have schizophrenia, the easier it will be for your recovery to run smoother and quicker.

Some guiding principles will get you to recovery:

The only real failure is the failure to try. Know that on some days getting out of bed will be a challenge.

Trying can be as simple as getting out of that bed.  It can be waking up on a Tuesday and deciding to change your life.  Nowhere in the rule book of how to live life with schizophrenia does it say you have to do extraordinary things all the time. There is no rule book. You get to decide how you want to live your life.

Give yourself the gift of a lifetime when it comes to making your recovery happen. 

Setting unrealistic deadlines will set you up for failure. Adjust your time frame for completing goals as necessary. Recognize that time spent in the woodshed is time well spent. Woodshedding is the term borrowed from the jazz world where musicians circa the 1920s and 1930s went into the woodshed to practice their instruments in private before playing out in public. defines woodshedding thus: "To lock oneself away with a musical instrument and practice, either a particular piece or in general, until the player has improved greatly or can perfectly play the piece he has been practicing."

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