Positive people are good news! We all have had a friend or two that are draining. People in our lives who leave us upset or confused every time we see them. When you have enough to go through you do not have to hang out with these naysayers. Pain patients have to be the best advocate for ourselves as possible and that may mean that others do not always like your choices. That is ok! Often times this negative person, is a patient themselves dealing with their own issues. Maybe they do not realize what stress they are putting on others around them. Often times we feel isolated and having anyone around even if they are not good for you feels more comfortable than being alone. When we struggle with chronic health problems, it is easy to feel a lot of empathy. Somehow, we do not feel so "weird" if we are with other "weird" or dysfunctional people. However, this might just end up draining you even more, which can increase depression and the pain we are feeling.

I have made a conscious choice to spend time with people who are good for me. People who make me smile and with whom I can feel happy, energetic, optimistic, and focus on the good parts of life. Positivity and hope can be contagious. Therefore, if you do not have too many positive people around you may want to re-examine whom you spend time with and pay attention to your energy. Working to stay positive can become a habit and you will have a better time coping with the daily challenges of living with chronic pain or illness.

Author's Bio: 

Ms. Ingle is a Chronic Pain Educator for the Power of Pain Foundation, guest speaker for The American Pain Foundation’s Power Over Pain Campaign since 2007 and National Motivational speaker. She has been a pain patient since 2002 and began mentoring other patients through The RSDHope Organization in 2006.

Prior to her auto accident causing chronic pain and subsequent surgeries, Barby was a business owner, event coordinator and head coach at Washington State University for the entire spirit program. Barby has managed a staff of 40 employees and over 50 team members/volunteers. She performed administrative and legal tasks pertinent to managing a small business. Head trainer for all instructional and judging staff. She created and choreographed original program material. Educated and certified all cheer and dance coaches in the state of Washington running up to 25 conferences a year. Barby prepared speeches, tests, manuals and performed presentations.

Barby had been speaking at charity events, awards ceremonies, special groups and all kinds of public venues for 17 years as part of her job as a Collegiate Head Coach, business owner and now as a patient advocate. She graduated from the George Mason University in 1994 with a degree in Social Psychology. Ms. Ingle uses her skills from Cheerleading to inspire and motivate patients to be self advocates and offers tips and tools for patients, caretakers and healthcare professionals. Honors include 2003 who’s who of U.S. Cheerleading coach’s honoree, 2004 Cheer LTD. Coach of the year nominee, Teams ranked nationally in the top 10, coached at the Sun Bowl and two Rose Bowls. Barby has also served as a National speaker, Author of the Cheertec Coaches' Handbook; six part DVD Series on aspects of cheerleading, RSD in Me! A Patient And Caregivers Guide To Dealing With RSD And Other Chronic Pain Conditions. She is also a contributor to Cheerleader! An American Icon and CO-Arthur of The Wisdom of Ingle.