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After receiving a chronic illness diagnosis, many of us have been forced to give up our regular activities because we cannot participate. We have a propensity to withdraw from our regular circles of friends and family and give up on our social lives. A transformation on this scale has the potential to significantly alter one’s life and almost certainly induce feelings of isolation. However, as time passes, we are able to transform that emotion into one of tranquility, even when we are forced to spend most of our time by ourselves.

One and only one implication of this fact needs to be taken into consideration, and that is the fact that we won’t always get our way. The first step toward living a level-headed life is coming to terms with the fact that life is full of uncertainty and surprises. For instance, if you can train yourself to feel happy for other people, you’ll also find that it makes you happy. Although it might seem strange to you, doing so would actually help you feel better about the constraints you face.

Imagine someone who is content in their life right now with something that you don’t have or want and see how happy they are. When you start to focus on the happiness of that other person, you will eventually start to feel happiness for yourself as well. No, it will not improve your illness, but it will give you the strength to fight it and the resilience to deal with the effects of it. The simple things in life help a person see life more positively, rather than the big ones like being sick and moping around all day.

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