Hope for a better tomorrow keeps me happy today

Having a bad day? Here's one way those with COPD can handle it

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by Caroline Gainer |

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I was scrolling through Facebook recently and found a friend’s post that shared his life philosophy. That philosophy? Forget yesterday, live for today, and hope for a better tomorrow. If yesterday was a bad day because of the weather, for example, we should forget about it.

But those of us with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) probably need to add some nuances to this formula. For example, did yesterday’s bad weather affect my COPD symptoms? If so, we shouldn’t forget about it, but rather consult our COPD action plans, which I’ve written about in previous columns.

I struggle with low oxygen saturation on hot and humid days, even if I’m indoors with the air conditioning running. If the humidity drops and I’m still having trouble with oxygen saturation, then I must determine what’s causing the problem. Are the hoses connected, and is the concentrator on the right setting?

A few weeks ago, I was short of breath just from going to the front door. My neighbor entered the house and noticed that my oxygen cannula had come unplugged from the supply hose.

Here’s another example: If we had a bad day because we didn’t get much sleep the previous night, and then it happens again, we shouldn’t just forget about it. Instead, we should try to figure out why we aren’t sleeping well. We might need to wind down our activities an hour before going to bed.

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Doing our best every day

I think we should try to live our best every day. We can do that in many ways, such as checking on someone who isn’t feeling well, helping someone understand that COPD isn’t a death sentence, or taking action to move an essential piece of health legislation through Congress.

Doing as much as possible for as long as possible can also help you have a good day. Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed, so we should live the best we can today.

We should also hope that tomorrow will be a good day. When I plan what I want to do tomorrow, I have more hope. If today was bad, we can still hope that tomorrow will be better.

Having an attitude of gratitude can increase the chances that tomorrow will be a good day. I’m a list maker, so I create a list of things I’m grateful for and a list of things I want to do tomorrow.

As this year nears its end, I feel the need to reflect on what went well for me and what didn’t. I also think about what I can do better next year.

For those of us with a chronic illness, our perspectives might be a little different because we must pay closer attention to changes. But that’s OK.

Note: COPD News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of COPD News Today or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.