Distraction and fun are two things that studies show will reduce the intensity of pain. Fun lowers stress and gives you a sense of control over your daily life. Adjust activities to how you are feeling. Take it easy the first time you try something. Try something new!

Keep in mind, when attempting an activity with a person who has pain issues:

Do:

Do discuss new activities with your physician beforehand, no exceptions.

Do choose activities that suit the pain issues and their physical condition.

Do be encouraging and positive.

Do start slow, with easy activities, and work up slowly towards those that are more strenuous.

Do be willing to try new things together.

Do look and listen for cues that they are overdoing it. They may push themselves too hard to make you happy.

Do focus on successes.

Don’t:

Don’t encourage them to push themselves too hard.

Don’t start out with strenuous or difficult activities.

Don’t give up if it didn’t go well the first time. Figure out why and try again.

Moderate Intensity Activities to Try

Collect shells on the beach.

download-3Host a movie night at your place.

Go birdwatching; borrow binoculars if you have to.

Do somethingĀ to help an elderly friend or neighbor.

Go thrift store hopping.

Organize a pot luck party.

Play miniature golf.

Go berry picking.

Have a fondue party at your place.fondue2

Attend a free class offered in your community.

Learn to juggle.

Fly a kite.

Visit with old friends on your patio.

Find the closest carousel to you and ride on it.dd

Play pool (billiards) with friends.

Try geocaching. (Go to geocaching.com).

Go on a picnic.

Do one of the activities on the Plowing Through Life website.

Are you an expert on something? Prepare and post a YouTube video on the subject.

Bake cookies.download-1

Do something totally spontaneous.

Go on an easy hike.

Make homemade gifts for next Christmas. (Start in June!)

Visit a museum or zoo.

Do a shared hobby together.

Sit in a sauna or hot tub together.

Go to a play or a concert.

Take a line dancing class at a country-western dance hall.

Find the most scenic route in your state and drive it together on a pretty day.

Take a beginner Pilates class together.

download-4Plant some annuals near the front walkway.

Go to a networking activity or a MeetUp together.

Go swimming together.

Stay overnight at a bed and breakfast, even a local one.

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