I love Matt Haig, so much that I actually read his self-help type books even thought I hate self-help books usually. I listened to this on the way to my second physiotherapy appointment for my back pain. Since my Covid confinement, I’ve had a really bad back, which my GP thinks is due to a flare up of my autoimmune arthritis brought on both from having Covid, and from lying about for three weeks while being ill causing all my joints to stiffen up.
At my first appointment, the physiotherapist gave me some exercises, and a very nice massage and suggested various things including trying some mindful meditation. I’m cynical about such things, but I searched on YouTube for meditation for chronic pain, and gave it a go. Well, it just made me proper cross! The mindfulness lady firstly told me to thank my chronic pain for being me faithful companion for so long. Ha! No. I will not and do no thank my pain. It is bad. Then she said, now, put the pain in a backpack and wear it on you back, contained and mindfully. Now, take the backpack off, and walk away from it. Good grief – if only I’d known that a cure for my chronic disease was so simple (sarcastic). I know that the mind is a powerful tool and real physical changes can happen because of mental attitude but that was just trite twaddle.
So I gave up on mindful meditations for chronic pain. I know I’m going off topic here, but the point is that Matt Haig’s book is not trite twaddle. He doesn’t claim any instant cure for mental health problems, in fact I saw a recent social media post of his where he said he is currently in a bad place struggling with negative feelings. The book is just a nice comforting diversion to think about happy things and smile a bit. Which even I believe is a good thing. So I arrived at my physio appointment smiling, and feeling much better – thanks Matt Haig!