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Mental Wellbeing

4 Ways to Stay Positive While Preparing for Your Surgery

Small steps can make a big difference in how you feel mentally and ultimately, physically when getting ready for surgery.
By Heather Campbell
Heather is a wellness expert, author and speaker and Co-Founder / CEO at Ready Set Recover. She previously held senior leadership positions at Audacy Radio Networks and ESPN. Heather has an MBA from NYU and a BA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Staying positive

In 1933, in the depths of the Great Depression in the U.S., Franklin D. Roosevelt famously said 'The only thing to fear is fear itself.' The sentiment also rings true when it comes to your health, and especially the prospect of having surgery. Idle worrying and stress gets you nowhere, and can actually hinder the body's healing process, whereas staying positive and more relaxed can lead to better outcomes. Thankfully, there are some simple ways you can help yourself:

1. Acknowledge this is a difficult time. Recognize that your upcoming surgery is causing a disruption in your regular day-to-day lifestyle. Your schedule must be changed, there will be everyday things you cannot do for a while, even weeks or months, and you and those around you will need to adapt. Carefully preparing for the time period right after surgery will help your life tremendously.

2. Make sleep a priority. If you’re tired, everything in life becomes more difficult and overwhelming. Not sleeping enough increases feelings of anxiety and irritability, and you’re more likely to be overwhelmed by the prospect of your surgery.

3. Surround yourself with positive information. Most of us don’t realize we’re constantly bombarded with negative information through news and social media. Consciously surround yourself with positive messages and inspirational stories. Whether you choose to read or listen to podcasts or audiobooks, your mind and body absorb every image and word. Ensure most if not all of the information coming in during the days and weeks prior to surgery is positive and hopeful, rather than those which generate fear and upsetting feelings.

4. Enjoy the little things. There’s nothing like a major event, including surgery, to shift one’s mindset. Being present and appreciating small everyday events adds to our happiness and sense of well being. Breathe deeply and nourish yourself in the moment. Now is the time! When we live in the moment more fully we experience the positive in our lives.


Ready Set Recover can give you the tools to easily incorporate these positive steps and so many more into your life before and after surgery to help you get better, faster!