Do you know someone who is a CONTROL FREAK?

Abbe Simon, M.A, CCC-SLP, IHC

Did the title of this column catch your eye because you live with someone who likes doing things their way? Do the words “control freak” mean something to you because your mirror reflects someone who prefers to be in charge? Or, perhaps you are someone who reads this newsletter from front to back to be sure you soak in all the goodness. I think it’s fair to say we all know someone who feels most comfortable when they can control the outcome. And it’s quite fair to say that most people had NO control over their stroke happening.

Here’s a fact: controlling people have a hard time adjusting to things that show up unexpectedly.
Here’s a fact: strokes happen unexpectedly.
Here’s a fact: people don’t expect to become a care PARTner overnight.
Here’s a fact: about 20% of people who have a stroke, will have another one.
Here’s a fact: there ARE things in your life that you CAN control after a STROKE shows up.

If you want to know more, please read on. If you have read enough, please ask someone you know
to read on 😉

As a speech language pathologist (SLP) and integrative health coach (IHC), I provide services for
people impacted by stroke. These specialities allow me to help others discover new ways to
communicate, connect, and achieve better health and wellness. A stroke does not just affect the
person who had it. Everyone in that person’s life has to adjust to the effects of a stroke and become
aware of how to live happily and meaningfully. This can be within your control.

Adjusting to life after a stroke could feel stressful. Once reality has set in (different timelines for
everyone), feelings of overwhelm can occur. New medications, suggested diets, the importance of
physical exercise and sleep, added to potential bodily function or communication changes, and
you’ve got a recipe for stress with a dollop of anxiety on top. This can be within your control.
All you need is to figure out the right amount of time and effort you have to:

THINK ABOUT YOUR THOUGHTS: Your thoughts are controllable and affect the way you
feel. Your feelings affect the things you do.
REST: Really Enjoy Some Time alone. Whether you are in a deep sleep or simply closing
your eyes and keeping your body still allows your nervous system to settle and reset.
CONNECT: Relationships matter. It is important that you connect with people EVERY day.
Phone calls, video chats, texting, and being with people are all social connections that are
positive contributors to health. Surround yourself with people that make you feel good.
SAY “YES” : Finding more ways to say “YES” to an invitation, someone offering help, or
admitting that you need to be alone.
ENJOY your ENVIRONMENT: Recognize that the place you spend most of your time should
be pleasing and bring you joy. Do the rooms make you happy or are you bored of seeing the
same thing? Could some new pillows brighten up the room? Small changes in your
environment can spark emotions that lift you up.
ADMIT and ACKNOWLEDGE: Your feelings matter. Your identity matters. Admitting your
feelings can be in the form of writing in a journal, art, or sharing them with someone else.
When emotions are bottled up, there is potential for them to be transferred and expressed
inappropriately. Mental health professionals are options for people who seek objective
FUEL your body: I cannot end my list without mentioning the importance of making wise
decisions when it comes to choosing the food you eat. While my coaching programs do not
focus on diets, it is essential to find moderation between the foods that you crave, forbid, and
need. Food is a way to connect with others, make yourself feel good, and be healthy. It is all
about balance.

If you have any questions or interest in learning more do not hesitate to reach out. I’m just a
discovery call away….

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