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Weekly Plans

When you feel comfortable planning one day at a time, try moving on to planning longer periods, such as a week. The challenge here is to estimate what level of activity you can sustain over a period of time without worsening your symptoms.

Consistency in activity level brings control. You can find your sustainable activity level through experimentation. Maybe you can be active for two hours a day, four hours or fourteen. The way to determine your limit is by trying different amounts of activity and noting the results in a health log.

The person featured in the success story for this page reports that her use of pacing resulted in an increase in her activity level of about 50% over a two year period. She attributes the improvement to a combination of factors that include making detailed daily and weekly schedules, being consistent in her use of the schedules, having several daily rest periods, and keeping records.
Keeping written records is a good aid to realistic planning. A health diary, which shouldn't take more than a few minutes a day to complete, can reveal the connections between what you do and your symptoms. It also helps you hold yourself accountable, by showing you the effects of your decisions. And it can motivate you by showing you that staying inside your limits pays off in lower symptoms and a more stable life. 

For more on record keeping, see the logging page on this site and the chapter on logs and worksheets in the text for the self-help program’s introductory course. The latter includes sample health logs.
For more on creating weekly plans, including an example, see the planning chapter in the self-help program text.
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