Actual conversation I had yesterday with a patient:
Ed: So how are you today, how are things going?
Patient: Not too terribly horrible
Ed: (laughing, probably not very appropriately) What does that actually mean?
Patient: You know…
Ed: No actually I don’t (I wasn’t going to let her off the hook)
Patient: (after much fumbling over her words, deep sighing, and mumbling) Pretty good, I guess
Ed: “pretty good, you guess” Does mean you aren’t sure?
Patient: No, I’m a little better
Teachable point: Notice how easy it was for her to speak with negatively charged words when she was describing what was actually a “positive” change. There is a huge difference between “not too terribly horrible” and “I’m a little better”. We need to let go of old stories, stop the negative self speak, and embrace the positive (even if it’s a small change). We need to write a “new story”. It feels good to feel good. Have a great day~

Ed Deboo, PT

Physical Therapy, Bellingham, WA