When going through Topical Steroid Withdrawal, the unfortunate part is progress seems stagnant.
When you have eczema and go through TSW, we tend to judge our progress on how our skin looks.
Whatever you do, it seems to make the TSW symptoms worse.
Sometimes you can do all the right things for weeks or months and you will still have flares ups or feel like you’ve taken two steps back.
Because TSW has such physical symptoms such as itching, oozing, redness, skin shedding, hair and weight loss, your circadian rhythm is off, your body temperature drops and now, daily life becomes a struggle.
Not only do you feel shit but doing day to day activities becomes extremely uncomfortable. I chose to take time off from school and work to recover.
So life was pretty much at a standstill. I wasn’t working or studying and my health wasn’t getting any better (or it didn’t seem to). I felt stuck.
One Step At a Time
When you are in a situation like that, you must keep moving forward while you get healthier. Your number one goal should be to get healthy.
With TSW, it’s a waiting game. Everyone gets better at different times. So while you wait and get healthier, work towards something small no matter what pace you go at.
This will give you something to focus on and keep your mind strong while you get better. If not, you’ll feel bad that you are stuck on the sidelines while everyone else progresses in life.
Whether it’s studying a new subject/topic, playing a video game series (finished Uncharted!) or binging a new TV show, do something that you enjoy and can see the progress.
If you’d like to get started, try one of the things I did below:
- Read a book
- Learn a new topic
- Learn to code
- How to invest in the stock market
- Side hustles you operate from home
- Start a new TV Series (BBC’s Sherlock Holmes, West World, The Office)
- Watch a new movie
- Start blogging about your passion
- Creating a website
- Go for a walk (no matter how painful or hard it is to get ready or go out, Pokemon GO really helped me)
- Listen to a podcast (Lewis Howes, Timothy Ferris, GaryVee, Oprah’s SuperSoul, etc.)
- Start a new video game or a mobile game
If you don’t, it can feel like forever. I barely saw progress in the first 3-6 months of TSW. If I chose to wait to get back to 100% and feel perfect, it would have been a very long time because I’m still not 100%.
I went back to work 8 months later on a part time basis and then transitioned to full time. But during those 8 months, I tried to remember to keep moving forward no matter how small the step would be and no matter how long it took.
On the short term, TSW sucks. But in the long run, I’m going to be 100 times healthier than I would be if I didn’t go through TSW and change my lifestyle for the better.
So remember to keep moving forward regardless of whichever situation you may be, even if it’s incremental, until the storm calms.
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*This rant and mindset was inspired by Gary Vaynerchuck. He dishes life/entrepreneurship advice which I’ve used to apply towards my health and TSW journey. Thanks @garyvee ❤️🙏