ProHealth fibromyalgia Vitamin and Natural Supplement Store and Health
Home  |  Log In  |  My Account  |  View Cart  View Your ProHealth Vitamin and Supplement Shopping Cart
800-366-6056  |  Contact Us  |  Help
Facebook Google Plus
Fibromyalgia  Chronic Fatigue Syndrome & M.E.  Lyme Disease  Natural Wellness  Supplement News  Forums  Our Story
Store     Brands   |   A-Z Index   |   Best Sellers   |   New Products   |   Deals & Specials   |   Under $10   |   SmartSavings Club

Trending News

What Does Fibromyalgia Feel Like?

VIDEO: What is Fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia and Thyroid Resistance

Be Your Own Researcher: Treat Chronic Pain as a Daily Experiment

Five Things You Should Never Say to a Person with Chronic Illness...And What To Say Instead

Fibromyalgia has a high prevalence and impact in cardiac failure patients.

Journey to a Diagnosis

My Current Treatment Protocol for Chronic Lyme and Fibromyalgia

The Depression Puzzle: Are Anti-inflammatories Better Than Antidepressants? An ME/CFS and FM Perspec...

Is Acceptance Just Resignation?

Print Page
Email Article

Gather Your Tribe

  [ 3 votes ]   [ Discuss This Article ]
By Lesli Hill • • November 7, 2017

Gather Your Tribe
Reprinted with the kind permission of Lesli Hill and Pain University

Human beings are neurologically wired to be social.  Much scientific research has shown that those individuals who have social support are more resilient when facing life-altering challenges. Research also suggests that social contact helps control depression, a common occurrence in those who have chronic pain. Yet, chronic pain is isolating. We have a tendency to fold inward, to circle the wagons, as a way to protect ourselves from danger (pain). Along my personal pain journey, I have found that isolation is like a progressive cloud that developed over me.  Let’s take a look at that a little more closely.


The first area of isolation was a retreat from my environment, just doing the normal daily life activities such as grocery shopping, picking up the mail, running to the bank. When I did get out, I did not chat with the checker or make eye contact with anyone. I just didn’t have the energy. It was only when I stepped back and observed myself in these situations that I was able to make an INTENTIONAL change. Think about individuals you may come in contact with as you go about your day. What right now needs can they meet? What does picturing yourself in a safe place in public look like?

Research has suggested that social interaction plays a key role in emotional and physical well-being. It can lower blood pressure, protect against heart disease, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis and depression. Social interaction contributes to longevity.
However, chronic pain is a self-isolating conditions. People with pain sometimes barely have the energy to get through the day. Maintaining old friendships requires more effort.  It is often hard to make social commitments because we do not know how much pain we will be having on a certain day. Sometimes, even though we schedule social outings, just the worry about being in a social situation can cause increased pain. We find that old friends just don’t understand and we put on our “pretend” face, which takes even more energy.

It requires INTENTIONAL planning to identify your right now needs on a social level. What right now needs can your old friends meet? What new friends do you need? What do you imagine a nurturing social contact would look like?


Turning to family is perhaps the most difficult piece of this plan. While we have an inner idea of what a perfect family is, in reality all families have levels of dysfunction. When you have pain, these are more evident. Within families, it is common to have triangulated relationships, defined very simply as an “us VS them.” If our environmental and social interactions are suffering, we become more dependent on those who are closest to us. Frequently, we feel like an outsider because family members don’t or won’t nurture us in the way we need.
How often, though, do you reveal your right now needs to family? If you have always been the nurturing go-to family member, chronic pain changes this dynamic. You find that your bucket is running on empty and become hurt that family members don’t see that. But, how can they know unless you tell them? They may be afraid of asking you how you feel because they are scared for you. We sit and wait for them to intuitively know what we need and frequently feel as if they don’t care.

What a dilemma. You need their support yet you pretend that you are “fine.” How many times have you said that to family members? This is where you have to step out into new territory…you must reveal to them that you are vulnerable, that you need help, that you need their help to get through your pain. Then, YOU MUST specifically tell them WHAT you need. That is the hard part, especially if you haven’t made that inventory yourself.
What INTENTIONAL changes can you make in your interactions with different family members to feel that your right now needs are met? Can you visualize how those changes will make a difference in how you are experiencing pain?

Lesli A. Hill, MS, is the co-founder and CEO of Pain University. In 2014, Lesli had suffered six years of catastrophic complications from a routine surgery, with intense pain being the most frightening part of the overwhelming complications.  Although she kept hoping it would go away, she sensed that this type of pain would stay with her perhaps for the rest of her life, which seemed impossible to imagine. Pain University is her answer. 

Post a Comment

Featured Products From the ProHealth Store
Optimized Curcumin Longvida® Fibro Freedom™ B-12 Extreme™

Article Comments

Be the first to comment on this article!

Post a Comment

Optimized Curcumin Longvida with Omega-3

Featured Products

Fibro Freedom™ Fibro Freedom™
Soothes, Strengthens & Revitalizes
Energy NADH™ 12.5mg Energy NADH™ 12.5mg
Improve Energy & Cognitive Function
FibroSleep™ FibroSleep™
The All-in-One Natural Sleep Aid
Optimized Curcumin Longvida® Optimized Curcumin Longvida®
Supports Cognition, Memory & Overall Health
Guaifenesin FA™ Guaifenesin FA™
Helps the Body Eliminate Excess Calcium and Phosphates

Natural Remedies

SAD? Coping with Seasonal Affective Disorder SAD? Coping with Seasonal Affective Disorder
The Guaifenesin Story: A centuries-old bark extract used for clearing the airways – now key to a popular FM symptom-reversal protocol The Guaifenesin Story: A centuries-old bark extract used for clearing the airways – now key to a popular FM symptom-reversal protocol
Help for Soreness and Swelling: What Do Silkworms Have to Do With It? Help for Soreness and Swelling: What Do Silkworms Have to Do With It?
Can Autoimmune Conditions be Reversed? Researchers Make a Surprising Discovery Can Autoimmune Conditions be Reversed? Researchers Make a Surprising Discovery
When a Good Night's Sleep Is Just a Daydream... When a Good Night's Sleep Is Just a Daydream...

ProHealth, Inc.
555 Maple Ave
Carpinteria, CA 93013
(800) 366-6056  |  Email

· Become a Wholesaler
· Vendor Inquiries
· Affiliate Program
Credit Card Processing
Get the latest news about Fibromyalgia, M.E/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Lyme Disease and Natural Wellness

CONNECT WITH US ProHealth on Facebook  ProHealth on Twitter  ProHealth on Pinterest  ProHealth on Google Plus

© 2018 ProHealth, Inc. All rights reserved. Pain Tracker App  |  Store  |  Customer Service  |  Guarantee  |  Privacy  |  Contact Us  |  Library  |  RSS  |  Site Map