GOALS CHANGE with Chronic Pain

I used to have up to 100 goals a year and I completed them. I then created systems to work more efficiently so I could take on MORE while parenting, spending time with my husband, family, girlfriends and volunteering.

I loved goals. I had them created for 5, 10 and 20 years into the future.

I pushed, stressed, judged, gave up sleep and family time to make sure they got done.

Does this resonate with you? Were you on the go, go, go and in competition with others and yourself? Did you love the adrenaline rush?

And then did you no longer have a second wind let alone a first wind no matter how hard you tried?


With persistent pain, goals need to take on a different feeling. A different way of thinking.

First, identify what must be done daily. You know. “I need to do this. I have to make a living. I have to pay the bills. I have to make meals. I have to take care of my kids, my parents and/or…”

Yes. You do so create gentle goals that will support you in your daily life. No force. If it doesn’t flow with who you are NOW, let it wash away. Be careful to not get lost in missing who you were and all the things you used to do.

My Goals Now

These support everything I do.

  • To follow what sparks my enthusiasm.   
  • To increase my energy through incremental action.
  • To feel whole in my health knowing that it changes daily.
  • To be kinder than necessary.
  • To ever-grow my compassion.
  • To leave love in my wake as I pass through this life.

Goals that Support my Health

These are my stretch goals. It is good for all of us to have ideas that we gradually reach towards. Notice that I have just three at any given time.

  • Increase aerobic strength each month. Remember sore but safe.
  • Mindfulness 5 times a week.
  • Try a new recipe weekly.    

Check out Chronic Pain and Self-care to support you daily.

To-Do List

People with Chronic pain absolutely need a to-do list. WHY? Because when your pain flares, you’ll need something to distract yourself. To turn up and away from the sensations that are trying to keep you locked in your body. Distraction is one of the best analgesics we have so let’s use it.  

For more information, read Distraction is the most Powerful Analgesic.


If you have a list of personal goals that you were aiming towards before your body changed, review them. Are they really your goals? Are they “you should do” goals? Are they based on the old you?

Be kind to yourself. Make a date. Get out a piece of paper and make a list of all the goals that are cluttering your mind. Now discard those that no longer serve you. Let your goals change!


Gail Sinclair, MHt, CNC is a hypnotherapist who helps those living with chronic pain go from discomfort to thriving by using hypnosis, pain management tools and resources.

She is a Master Hypnotherapist, Nutritional Consultant, and a Reiki Master Teacher. She has over 20 years in healing work and is an international award-winning speaker.

Gail lives in Portland, OR with her delightful husband, son, and cat. She can be found cooking, knitting, writing, and figuring out new ways to thrive with Trigeminal, and Occipital Neuralgia.

You can reach her at gail@thriveswithchronicpain.com or at http://www.thrivewithchronicpain.com.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: