In this Ask the Coach episode, Tami answers the question, "Should I take medication for fibromyalgia?" The good news is that there are many ways of treating fibromyalgia. It's not a choice between medication or nothing! Instead, you get to choose whether or not medication is the right choice for you AND if you want to try other treatment options. Tami gives six key points to consider as you make your choice. As always, anyone wishing assistance in this decision-making process should consider scheduling a consultation for more personalized assistance. For more information, free copies of Tami's books, and full show notes visit: FibromyalgiaPodcast.com/50.
You're going along fine and then BOOM! Fibromyalgia flare! You try to figure out what pushed you over the edge this time and it all seems so minor. But our mental, physical, and emotional capacity isn't defined by one thing. Instead, our capacity is more like a bucket. All the little — and big! — things go in the bucket and add up. If you're not careful, your bucket overflows and that's when you trigger a flare. The Bucket Theory is a way of understanding your capacity so that you can make better choices that lead to less pain, more energy, and fewer flare ups. For more information, free copies of Tami's books, and full show notes visit: FibromyalgiaPodcast.com/49.
There are things you know you don't know, like rocket science, maybe. But there are also many things that you don't know that you don't know, like your unconscious habits or how your body will respond to a particular fibromyalgia treatment option you never knew existed. In this special replay, Eva Minkoff, host of the [Human]care podcast, interviews Tami to uncover the two lowest points in Tami's fibromyalgia journey, the thing that turned it all around for her, and how she guides her clients into "knowing what you don't know." Be warned! There is a lot of laughter and fun in this episode! In fact, Tami describes this interview as one of the most fun interviews she's ever done! Enjoy! For more information, free copies of Tami's books, and full show notes visit: FibromyalgiaPodcast.com/48. Note: This interview was originally shared in April 2019 on the Invisible Not Broken podcast. Eva has recently launched her own podcast, [Human]care, and includes a re-issue of this episode.
1 hr 6 min
Ever wish you had an owner's manual for your body? Something you could reference to see exactly what to do to keep your body feeling its best? Often, it seems like fibromyalgia symptoms create a guessing game of, "What did I do this time?" One minute you're fine, the next you've crossed the line into a fibromyalgia flare. In this episode, you'll learn how to write your very own owner's manual for your body. Tami calls this your "Book of You", a guide to managing your fibromyalgia symptoms and creating more predictable energy and pain levels. Included in this episode are prompts and examples to help you begin. For more information, the Getting To Know You worksheet, free copies of Tami's books, and full show notes visit: FibromyalgiaPodcast.com/47.
Brain fog can be one of the most difficult fibromyalgia symptoms to treat. Many doctors don't know what to do with our brain fog and act as if it will take care of itself once our pain and fatigue is managed. However, there are many tips, tricks, and tools that you can use to set up your life so that brain fog has a smaller impact. In this episode, Tami shares her top ten brain fog tips and the tools she uses every day to stay on top of her business and personal life. All ten of these tips you can implement right now, today. No prescription or doctor required! For more information, free copies of Tami's books, and full show notes visit: FibromyalgiaPodcast.com/46.
Tami interviews four clients on the ways that they have found to improve their fibromyalgia symptoms over the last few months. You’ll hear how a mindset shift helped Joyce take ownership of her treatment plan. Julee shares how her 15-year chronic illness journey of 26 surgeries, bedrest, feeding tubes, sepsis, and more, taught her the importance of having fun and seeking joy. Trial and error, along with guidance from her coach and education on what options were available to her, helped Chantal get better sleep and lower her pain levels. Gisèle found clarity and solutions through putting pen to paper in class assignments. You’ll also hear from our August 2020 commencement speaker, Sharon Waldrop, President of the Fibromyalgia Association of Michigan, as she shares encouragement and wisdom with our new graduates. She says, “Life sometimes seems impossible, but there’s always a way. You just haven’t thought of it yet.” For more information, free copies of Tami's books, and full show notes visit: FibromyalgiaPodcast.com/45.
1 hr 2 min
What would it feel like to have to have a schedule that supported your body feeling great? Even better, what would it look like if your calendar could help you get better? You may think this sounds impossible. When Tami was first diagnosed with fibromyalgia, she discovered she could really only leave the house once a week and continue to feel her best. She felt like a slave to her calendar and prisoner in her own body. However, learning to protect her body’s healing time gave Tami more control over her health and symptoms. This helped her to have more stable and predictable good days and energy. In this episode, Tami shares the Dream Week process she developed over a decade ago to help her body heal. The Dream Week Planner worksheets are included in this episode's show notes for you to download and use along with Tami as she walks you through designing your very own Dream Week. For more information, the Dream Week Planner worksheets, free copies of Tami's books, and full show notes visit: FibromyalgiaPodcast.com/44.
1 hr 22 min
11 Things You Need For Your Fibromyalgia Healing Journey After more than a decade of helping clients improve their fibromyalgia symptoms, Tami has learned what it really takes to get better — and it might not be what you think! Yes, you do need effective fibromyalgia treatment, a fibromyalgia specialist to guide you, and a good doctor who treats you with respect and compassion. However, these aren't usually the same person! Tami has also identified nine additional things that are just as critical on your journey. Listen in to learn what Tami has found to be key in all of her client fibromyalgia healing stories — and key to her own fibromyalgia remission. For more information, free copies of Tami's books, and full show notes visit: FibromyalgiaPodcast.com/43.
1 hr 1 min
With many areas beginning to reopen after being shut down due to COVID-19, many people are wondering how they can return to work safely — particularly when they carry a high-risk of developing severe complications from COVID-19. The good news is that protecting your health while returning to work falls under the Americans with Disabilities Act. It is your right to ask for "reasonable accommodations" to help you stay safe and healthy. Listen in as Tami talks with Julie Hamilton about new laws that have been passed to help employees dealing with COVID-related absences, how special work accommodations can help you stay safe, how to have these important conversations with your employers and more. Key Points The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) has been put into place to help employees who have to be off work for COVID-19-related reasons. Many of us with fibromyalgia have weakened immune systems, so we need to limit our interactions with others and take precautions. When it comes to job accommodations, we can be creative. We can think outside the box on how to keep you safe. Technology companies are very forward thinking in coming up with some of the job accommodation solutions for us. When you go back to work, there's high stress, fearfulness, and anxiety returning to work during COVID… Brush up on your coping mechanisms so that you can release that stress. With all the changes in life during COVID, you may need to learn some new fibromyalgia coping skills. You may need new tools for your fibro toolbox. Know what your company's policies are… and get a hold of your job description. That will give us an idea whether it’s really mandatory for you to work in the office or not. About Julie Hamilton Julie Hamilton is a Certified Fibromyalgia Coach, Life Coach and Youth Life Coach. She has over 20 years experience as a Human Resources Director and Manager, with the last nine years in healthcare. In her role as an HR Director and Manager, she educated her coworkers, particularly nursing professionals, on the treatment and management of living with fibromyalgia. Julie has worked with the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) since its inception in 1993, knows the requirements, and can effectively advise individuals on the necessities when working with their employer when they have a chronic disease. Julie’s specialty is helping young professionals who are frustrated with their health to excel in their career and regain their active social lives. Links & Resources FibromyalgiaPodcast.com is the digital companion to this audio magazine, where you can find all of the links and resources mentioned in this episode, along with full show notes, submit your questions for Tami Stackelhouse, and schedule a free consultation with a Fibromyalgia Coach. Get free copies of Tami’s books at FibromyalgiaPodcast.com/books
1 hr 17 min
Nearly everyone with fibromyalgia has had some sort of trauma in their past. Mental or physical abuse, car accident, illness, the death of someone close to you, chronic stress, and more are all considered trauma. But some people come through these traumas and become better people as a result. Perhaps they are more compassionate, learn resilience, or have a greater appreciation for life in all its imperfection. This is Post-Traumatic Growth. In this episode, Tami interviews Dr. Robin Pfaff about her work with post-traumatic growth, including sharing the story of one of her clients, Laurie. They discuss what trauma is and the impact that it has on fibromyalgia. In addition, Tami and Robin talk about Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), what PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) is, and the benefits of looking at fibromyalgia through the lens of any past trauma. Content / Trigger Warning This episode includes mention of trauma and suicide. If you are experiencing a suicidal or mental health crisis, or concerned for someone else, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at (800) 273-8255. Key Points A very high proportion of people diagnosed with fibromyalgia will meet the criteria for post-traumatic stress disorder at some time in their life. The Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) assessment score has been highly correlated with the development of chronic illnesses later in life. One of the ways that we can mitigate the impact of trauma on our lives and our physical health is to wrap our minds around the concept of post-traumatic growth. Post-Traumatic Growth means you went through a really stressful experience and came out the other side a better person. In coaching, there’s no failure. We either succeed or we learn something. Coaching in and of itself brings out the growth aspects for people. Fibromyalgia is so tied to our fight or flight that anytime you can calm down your anxiety and stress response, it’s going to have a spillover effect of making your fibromyalgia symptoms lessen. Being coachable, teachable, and willing to try new things really does make a difference. About Dr. Robin Pfaff Dr. Robin Pfaff is in the business of helping women transform their lives and reach their full potential. She was diagnosed with fibromyalgia herself over 20 years ago. After working 25 years as a psychotherapist, she retooled as a National Board Certified Health and Wellness Coach and a Certified Fibromyalgia Coach. Robin has a special expertise in helping women reclaim their lives from the grief, loss and trauma that often accompany fibromyalgia and move through post traumatic stress into post-traumatic growth. She loves working with her fibromyalgia clients and considers Fibromyalgia Coaching to be an invaluable and unique treatment option that helps women regain their health and learn to love their lives again. Links & Resources FibromyalgiaPodcast.com is the digital companion to this audio magazine, where you can find full show notes, links to the studies referenced in this episode, submit your questions for Tami Stackelhouse, and schedule a free consultation with a Fibromyalgia Coach. Get free copies of Tami’s books here. You will find the Dream Week exercise mentioned in this episode in Take Back Your Life. Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) Assessment Test Post-Traumatic Growth Inventory The Dream Week worksheets, videos, and other resources can be accessed by signing up here. Schedule a complimentary consultation with Dr. Robin Pfaff The Fibro Manual by Dr. Ginevra Liptan (Affiliate link) Other Episodes Mentioned Episode 18, CBD for Fibromyalgia with Dr. Ginevra Liptan Episode 23, Counseling, Coaching and Post-Traumatic Growth with Dr. Robin Pfaff Research Studies Google Scholar is a great place to find research studies on a variety of topics related to ACEs, fibromyalgia and trauma. Littlejohn, Geoffrey, and Emma Guymer. “Central Processes Underlying Fibromyalgia.” European Medical Journal 3.4 (2018): 79-86.