Be a Babe: Subscribe & get a free Beginner's Toolkit + more. Smooches!

6 ways to answer “how are you?” #AWAPwednesday

Posted by on Jun 22, 2016 in ChronicBabe Basics, featured, friends and family, relationships | 4 comments

Today’s video is another take on the time-tested question: How to answer “how are you?” So many of us are asked these questions all the time, and it can be aggravating to come up with a response. So I’ve got a few ideas for you today, and a free download of 100 more that can be customized to your unique personality. Watch today’s video, then tell me: what are YOUR favorite responses?   *AWAP = As Well As Possible Now it’s your turn: Have you responded in ways that harmed relationships, and how would you do it differently? Have you responded in ways that were educational and turned folks into your allies? I would love to know! Share your experience in the comments below. Want more #AWAPwednesday? Check out our #AWAPwednesday video playlist, which has more than 100 videos packed with practical advice, lots of humor, and bloopers. Lots of bloopers. Is there a question I can answer for YOU? Add it to the comments below, or shoot me an email. Until we meet again: Be AWAP! Smooches! (Loose) Transcript: Hi! I’m Jenni Grover Prokopy of ChronicBabe.com and today is AWAP Wednesday (that stands for As Well As Possible). Each week, I offer you my personal favorite tips and techniques to help you craft an incredible life beyond illness. Yes! I know you can. The reason I created AWAP is because I was tired of sending emails to people wishing them well. Hoping they’re well. Asking if they’re well. People ask me how I am all the time, and I often don’t know how to answer. People ask me if I’m well often, and it can feel really confusing to come up with an authentic answer that’s not going to freak them out, or push them away—or even start a big conversation. So today, I’ve got some ideas for how to answer “how are you?” And I’m also sharing a PDF with 100 ways to tackle this difficult question. Here we go: “I’m fine, how are you?” I know, I know! You’re all like BOOOOO! But sometimes this is the easy way out. You don’t really want to get into a long explanation with a cashier or a doorman, right? So just fake it and keep moving on. It’s OK. “I’m AWAP! And you?” This is a fun way to introduce people to the concept of AWAP, so they can use it too—and you don’t have to dig into your health issues much at all. “Strange, and getting stranger!” Answering with something weird or silly but not too pushy is a fun way to set the tone. This one works great at parties. Maybe you don’t want to get into your symptoms at the...

Read More

Be Nice (in Conversations About Chronic Pain and Illness) #AWAPwednesday

Posted by on May 18, 2016 in activism, announcements, ChronicBabe Basics, featured, ranting, relationships | 18 comments

Last week, some folks decided to jump into a ChronicBabe Facebook conversation and be disrespectful to others. It sucked. The conversation was originally about a handful of stories about chronic illness and how relatable they are. Then one person declared that one of the women profiled was using an incorrect diagnosis, and that it was “pseudoscience.” I stepped in to stop the thread, asking folks to back off and be respectful. They didn’t; in fact, they stepped up their efforts. It was very upsetting for many people, and I eventually deleted the whole post to shut down the conversation. I hated doing this! The ChronicBabe community is built on a solid foundation of mutual respect and support, so it’s awful when some folks can’t see that. I understand that they were well-meaning, but no matter their intentions, they were being rude and disrespectful. So today’s video is a handful of thoughts I have about this event, and a reassurance that I will always protect ChronicBabe and keep it positively awesome. Even if the tone of the nation’s conversation about chronic pain and illness is trending negative, we don’t have to follow suit. I’m so eager to hear what you think! Watch today’s video, and then chime in below. *AWAP = As Well As Possible Now it’s your turn: Have you faced bullying or negative feedback online? How did you react? Were you able to steer the conversation toward a more productive outcome? I would love to know! Share your experience in the comments below. Want more #AWAPwednesday? Check out our #AWAPwednesday video playlist, which has more than 100 videos packed with practical advice, lots of humor, and bloopers. Lots of bloopers. Is there a question I can answer for YOU? Add it to the comments below, or shoot me an email. Until we meet again: Be AWAP!...

Read More

How to Create Your Own Authentic Holiday Season… and Bypass the Craziness (AWAP Wednesday)

Posted by on Nov 25, 2015 in acceptance, ChronicBabe Basics, coping, featured, friends and family, holidays, relationships, self care | 0 comments

Oh, the holidays are SO stressful! I mean, they’re super-fun. But also, stress: Travel, which can be stressful in and of itself Eating weird/rich/too much of foods that you’re not used to Interacting with family/acquaintances/co-workers with whom you might have strained relationships Overindulgence and temptation at every turn Pressure to be “well” enough to meet the expectations of others to be “festive” and “jolly” even if you “feel like dog crap” and “wish you could be napping instead” Sadness around loss of normalcy, especially for folks who have lost romantic partners or children or pets this time of year Focus on consumption and other money-related stresses BWAH! It’s too much. If we think of it in this way, that is. So I’ve got a different perspective for you to try out: Make your own holiday. That’s right: Make it your own. Don’t try to be everyone’s everything. Eschew traditions that don’t fit your current abilities or interests. Assert your needs. Plan fun things that work for you and feed your joy. I know–this is kind of revolutionary for some of you. The holidays are laden with traditions that we are loathe to break, especially if we don’t want to “let down” family members. But what does the winter holiday season TRULY symbolize for so many of us, no matter our religion or spiritual pursuit? Togetherness. Generosity. Joy. Creativity. Fun. Rest and relaxation. Delicious meals. Snuggle time with pets and our loved ones. Fun. Did I mention fun? Will you get some resistance? Probably. Your great aunt Shirley might think it’s nuts that you don’t want to eat turkey and instead want to have a potluck and invite your two best friends to the family table. Your mom may think it’s bizarre that you want to stay in the city and nestle into your little apartment with your cat and a good book and enjoy some quiet time, instead of traveling across the country to sleep in a cramped guest room. If you’re like me, you might have family members who resist your new tradition of a gift swap (instead of buying dozens of gifts for everyone). But believe me… they’ll learn to love it. Or not. Either way, it’s OK. It’s OK. This holiday time is YOUR holiday time. Make it your own. Make a list of the things that are a priority for you. Make a list of the things that will feed your soul. Make a list of the things that will be fun for you. (I bet these lists are really one big list all together!) Get solid on your priorities, and then gently assert yourself. Planning an authentic, soul-fueling holiday season is a mindful task, so...

Read More

How to Respond to People Who Offer Cures for Chronic Illness (AWAP Wednesday)

Posted by on Nov 18, 2015 in ChronicBabe Basics, coping, featured, holidays, ranting, relationships | 20 comments

Today’s AWAP Wednesday video is all about what to do when someone offers you an unsolicited cure for your chronic illness. I KNOW you get these all the time—I sure do—and it’s a pickle to figure out how to respond with grace and calm when you’re all riled up inside! So I’ve come up with a few ideas for you that just might help you have easier conversations. Watch today’s video, in which I share some of my favorite conversation strategies for cure-offering busy bodies: *AWAP = As Well As Possible Now it’s your turn: How do YOU respond when someone tries to push a cure on you? What has worked, and what hasn’t? I wanna know! Join the conversation in the comments below, share your experience and ask for advice from our community. Want to watch more videos like this? Check out our AWAP Wednesday video playlist, which has almost nine hours of guidance, advice, and bloopers. Is there a question I can answer for YOU? Add it to the comments below, or shoot me an email. Until we meet again: Be AWAP! Smooches! (Rough) transcript: Sitting under a special tree, which is home to angels who will bless me and cure me. Drinking tart cherry juice. Taking handfuls of supplements every few hours. Seeing a particular specialist who has a secret cure. These are all real things people have suggested to me to get rid of fibromyalgia. Grrrr… I KNOW you know what I’m talking about. Today, I’m talking about how to talk to people who offer you cures. [Transition] Hi! I’m Jenni Prokopy of ChronicBabe.com and today is AWAP Wednesday (that stands for As Well As Possible). Each week, I offer you my favorite tips and techniques to help you craft an incredible life beyond illness. Yes! I know you can. Subscribe to the ChronicBabe YouTube channel today to make sure you never miss another video, OK? [Transition] It’s rough when someone offers a cure, right? Because many of us WISH for cures. We crave a fix. We would give almost anything to be well again. So when someone offers us an unsolicited cure, it tugs on our heart strings for a moment. We want it to be real. And then we feel the inevitable crushing blow of its non-realness. It’s almost like we get sick all over again, each time. It can feel like a little defeat. And then we’re stuck with responding to this unsolicited cure, which is a quandary. [Transition] Consider the Source. It’s one thing for one of our healthcare providers to suggest a new treatment, or for a well-meaning friend to forward a link to an article about new research. It’s a whole other thing for strangers to offer us “cures.”...

Read More

Embrace the Beauty of No (AWAP Wednesday)

Posted by on Oct 14, 2015 in acceptance, ChronicBabe Basics, coping, featured, practicalities, relationships | 5 comments

Today’s AWAP Wednesday video is a little bit longer than usual, and a little bit different. Today, we’re learning to embrace the beauty of saying no. We ALL need to say no more often—I’m including myself in that category—so I’m sharing three strategies to help us figure out how to honor our own needs and say no. Nada. Nope. Watch today’s video, in which I share some of my favorite no-saying strategies. *AWAP = As Well As Possible Now it’s your turn: How do YOU figure out when to say no? Have people fought you when you say no? I wanna know! Join the conversation in the comments below, share your experience and ask for advice from our community. Want to watch more videos like this? Check out our AWAP Wednesday video playlist, which has almost nine hours of guidance, advice, and bloopers. Is there a question I can answer for YOU? Add it to the comments below, or shoot me an email. Until we meet again: Be AWAP! Smooches! (Rough) transcript: Nope! Unh unh. Naw. No. No! Today we’re doing something a little different: We’re embracing the beauty of NO. Hi! I’m Jenni Prokopy of ChronicBabe.com and today is AWAP Wednesday (that stands for As Well As Possible). Each week, I offer you my favorite tips and techniques to help you craft an incredible life beyond illness. Yes! I know you can. Subscribe to the ChronicBabe YouTube channel today to make sure you never miss another video, OK? It’s time to say no. As women, we’re taught to say yes: Yes to helping people. Yes to being the caretaker. Yes to juggling dinner and our kids’ bath time and laundry and dishes. Yes yes yes. But damn, that is tiring. Saying yes to everything will wipe you out. And you’ve got limited energy already, babe! So it’s time to say NO. Clear your calendar. Is your date book filled with engagements you’re only half-interested in, but you said YES to because you didn’t want to appear anti-social, or hurt someone’s feelings? It’s time to clear those calendar events, babe. Cancel them. Cross them out. You don’t have time to spend on things that aren’t a) really good for you, b) really fun or c) really necessary. I invite you to say NO to everything else. Delegate. Are you doing too much at home? It’s time to delegate. Maybe you need to have a heart-to-heart with your honey about dividing tasks more successfully. Maybe you need to find space in your budget so you can hire a cleaning service every couple weeks. Maybe there’s a barter you can do with a friend, so both of you benefit by doing tasks more ideally suited to your abilities. Say NO to things...

Read More

5 Secrets to Coping with Chronic Illness (AWAP Wednesday)

Posted by on Sep 9, 2015 in ChronicBabe Basics, coping, featured, friends and family, humor, practicalities, relationships | 6 comments

Today’s AWAP Wednesday video offers five of my all-time favorite coping techniques for chronic illness. They’re fast and advice-packed, so get ready! Watch today’s video, in which I share my favorite coping skills… and encourage you to develop your own: *AWAP = As Well As Possible Now it’s your turn: What is YOUR favorite coping skill? I wanna know! Join the conversation in the comments below, share your experience and ask for advice from our community. Want to watch more videos like this? Check out our AWAP Wednesday video playlist, which has more than eight hours of guidance, advice, and bloopers. Is there a question I can answer for YOU? Add it to the comments below, or shoot me an email. Until we meet again: Be AWAP! Smooches! (Rough) transcript: PSSSSSST come closer… I have a secret for you. Here it is: Chronic Illness does NOT have to ruin your life. It can actually make you sexy. What? I know! Shhhhhh! Hi! I’m Jenni Prokopy of ChronicBabe.com and today is AWAP Wednesday (that stands for As Well As Possible). Each week, I offer you my favorite tips and techniques to help you craft an incredible life beyond illness. Yes! I know you can. There are limitless ways to cope with chronic illness, and if you ask just about anyone, they’ll offer you advice. Heck… many people will offer you advice whether you ask or not, amirite?! But you know me, you trust me to steer you straight. So yay! Today I want to share with you—in rapid-fire succession—my top five secrets to coping with chronic illness. Here we go… Radical Self-Care for Chronic Illness When you’re sick all the time, you often lose the time and energy to do some self-care. Pedicures and face masks go out the window. But they shouldn’t. Why? Because you already feel like crap—why deny yourself the very things that can give you even a smidge of relief? Radical self-care is prioritizing the things that make you feel great. Don’t have time or money for a full pedi? Take five minutes and slap on a coat of paint, babe. Get creative. Fit it in. You simply must. When you prioritize your self-care, you’re sending a conscious and unconscious message to your mind that YOU MATTER. Make it Sexy Make it sexy. Seriously. I’ll sometimes joke about, say, having gas. Because nothing is sexier than farts, right? If I’m having a bad gastrointestinal day my boyfriend hears me toot, I’ll say, “aw yea, sexy!” We both laugh. Is it really sexy? No. But you know what is? Having a sense of humor about it. Rally Your Team You’ve heard me say it before, and I’ll say it again now: You’ve gotta have a strong...

Read More

WE’RE NOT DOCS!

Info posted here should not be considered medical advice; it's not intended to replace consultation with physicians or other health care providers. 

Every Babe needs to find her own path for achieving optimal wellness. While we do tons to help guide you, it’s up to each of you to make well-informed choices and live with the consequences. ChronicBabe.com assumes no liability or responsibility for stuff that goes wrong.

Links to other web sites are provided as a service, but do not constitute endorsement of those sites by ChronicBabe.com; we are not responsible for their content. We do our best to find the most rockin’ resources but hey, we’re human.

Take what you like from this space, and leave the rest. Use what you learn to make your life better. Be responsible for your own choices. And please don’t sue us. XO!

As Seen In