A person with the past experience of narcotic addiction is booked for surgery. He knows he will require some type of pain relief after the surgery. He does not wait and hope the doctor will do the right thing. He asks the surgeon about the types of pain relief medication he normally prescribes. He makes clear his decision to have non-narcotic pain relief. He researches the options on the internet. He is clear with his nurses and physician that he will not be accepting narcotic pain relief. He chooses to use a non narcotic pain relieving drug and relaxation techniques. He researches and practices those techniques. He explains his decision using quality information. He makes sure his family understands and supports his choices. He succeeds in managing his health and he does not return to the addiction lifestyle.
Self-management of your health requires work, responsibility, accountability, negotiation, and communication skills. It results in ownership of your own health. It creates solutions that fit with your knowledge, skills, and value system. It’s worth it, if you want to stay in control of your life. Self-management is more effective than letting others manage your health and your new life goals for you. You cannot, by default, not manage your health. You can only manage it well or poorly. If you decide not to engage in healthful behavior or not to be active in managing your health, this behavior actually reflects a decision on your part. Unless you are totally ignorant of healthful behaviors, it is impossible not to manage your health (Lorig, & Holman).