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Chronic Illness Q&A with Dr. B.

Dr. Larry Berkelhammer

Dr. Larry Berkelhammer

This question & answer column is for people living with chronic health challenges and their family caregivers, who want to learn to increase the odds of improving their health by learning to live with mastery & wellbeing.

I invite you to post your questions in the comments box below. When I get a certain number of related questions, I pick one that covers them all and I answer that one.

I post to this blog three times per week. Monday posts are relevant published articles. Wednesday posts are interviews—mostly video. Friday posts consist of questions about living better with chronic health challenges, and my answers to them.

Here is this week’s question:

THIS WEEK’S QUESTION: You have written about the importance of acceptance of all feelings, yet you have also written that chronic anger and rage, frustration, sadness, hopelessness, and other unpleasant emotions cause physical harm to our health. If that’s the case, it seems to me that it would be important to get rid of those more harmful emotions.

ANSWER:  Good luck doing that! “What you resist persists” has been known for centuries.  Another one is “If you don’t want it, you’ll have it.” If you want to mitigate the harm from the so-called negative emotions, you must welcome them and embrace them. This is almost impossible to achieve, but a very simple, unadorned  mindfulness practice can help.  Also, a new, very evidence-based form of psychotherapy known as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) can be extremely helpful. 

This website is offered as a free public service, supplying information that has been found helpful to certain people living with chronic health challenges. No treatment is offered on this website. The advice is general, and may or may not apply to your individual situation, and is not a substitute for psychotherapy or medical treatment.

What questions do you have about how to live better with chronic health challenges that are related to the relationship between states of mind and health? 

Just scroll down and type your question in the comment box. I will post a reply to your comment, but your question may not appear in this column. 

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