Recovery Norway does not make any claims about how many can get well from strategies like the ones our members have used, although we do think they are evidence that it is possible. We do acknowledge stories of people who have experienced worsening symptoms after such strategies too, and we think this is one reason for doing more research.
Gradually my body ground to a halt, and I could feel the strength just seeping out of me. I was twenty and studying higher education. I was also an active athlete and wanted to focus fully on my sport.
After a while I decided to put my studies on hold so that I could spend energy I had left on my sport. Despite this I was far from able to complete the sessions I had scheduled with my coach. I cut back on more and more of my daily activities, but my body just became weaker and weaker.
In the end I really did not do a lot. I no longer studied, I did not spend much time with friends, I moved back in with my parents, and eventually also gave up my spot on the national team.
I moved back in with my parents, and eventually also gave up my spot on the national team
Still, I worked out occasionally and tried to do things I enjoyed.
I went to see my GP, a private doctor, and a doctor associated with Olympiatoppen (Olympic sports centre) to try and find out what was wrong with my body. Innumerable blood samples were taken and all my innards, intestines, heart, lungs etc. were examined. Nobody could give me a clear answer, which was so frustrating. I tried positive thinking and using the mental training methods I had learned through sport. This was probably vital in keeping me from lying on the sofa all day. My energy levels fluctuated, but I never regained my ‘normal’ levels. I was able to prioritise things I really wanted to do but would usually need hours – if not days- to recover afterwards.
Nobody could give me a clear answer, which was so frustrating
My parents and boyfriend were becoming worried as the active and high-spirited girl they used to know started spending more and more time under a blanket on the sofa. As the doctors found nothing, I stopped seeing them, and I was never given a diagnosis. My frustration grew as my body no longer seemed to perform the way it should, especially since I could not fathom what was wrong. My energy and fitness level had simply plummeted for more than two years. I so hoped to find something or somebody who could help me.
My mother gradually began to hint that I might want to try out the Lightening Process (LP). She had attended a course with my sister, and thought it might do me some good, too. I understood it to be a mental training course, which I had used frequently as an active athlete. The course seemed good, but I was not sure it would do much for me. After all, I was always trying to stay positive, which probably helped a bit. And also, I felt that my exhaustion was a physical issue, not a mental one.
I took my time, hoping to wait out the exhaustion. Months went by, but things did not improve. Almost three years had passed since the whole thing started. I had some serious discussions with myself and decided that it might be worth trying the LP. It seemed to be my best option, after all. I submitted an application, and luckily, I was accepted.
At the training course I learned more about the way negative thoughts and emotions can have a direct physical impact on the body. And I began to understand how my frustration and sorrow for being so unwell, often made the body enter into a stress-mode, steeling so much energy. Otherwise much of it was familiar, as I had read and learnt a lot about mental training though my sporting activities. This meant I could grasp things easily and I benefited really well from the techniques from day one. There were no magic tricks, I simply learnt how to steer my thoughts and feelings in a positive direction. Everything was incorporated into a system and a process which made it manageable. I stuck to the process and used it frequently for months. Gradually my energy levels increased, and I felt more and more confident that my body actually worked just fine. It is amazing how the body and mind is connected.
I began to understand how my frustration and sorrow for being so unwell, often made the body enter into a stress-mode, steeling so much energy
Now, half a year later, I have returned to an active life filled with studies and sports, although I do spend less time on my sporting activities now, in order to free up more time for other things. Hiking in the mountains with my husband, and spending time with family and friends is more important to me these days. I still use a lot of what I learnt from the LP, in day-to-day situations as well as sport focussed. The mental techniques we learnt at the course will be useful for me for the rest of my life.