How to Make the Most Out of Vest Time!

I don’t really know anyone who actually enjoys doing their Vest.  In fact, if baffles me, because it is probably the most passive of all the requisite treatments those of us with CF are asked (told) to do, but most people hate it.  They put it off…they rationalize…they ignore it…some actually hide it!  One client told me this week that she actually had the Vest on, and wore it around the house for a few hours, psychologically unable to hook up.

I think a study should be done, frankly.

But, short of that, I have come up with a list of “sure-fire” ways to spice up your Vest time.  Beware, you may actually find that you want to schedule in an extra session!

Here is it:  The Top Ten Ways to Make Vesting Fun!

1) This is the most obvious.  Television.  You are hooked up to a machine and can’t move.  There is nothing else to do…if EVER there is an excuse for mindless TV, it is now.  These days, with technology on our side, we even have the advantage of Tivo (or some knockoff), so we can actually schedule a show that we truly want to see as a carrot to bring us over to the dreaded machine.  Not only that, but in case the rest of your neighborhood doesn’t have your similar taste in shows, now there are wireless headphones  to strap on (one more thing to get tangled up in).
2) Audiobooks.  I know.  Reading while vibrating at 14 hertz is not a pleasant nor relaxing activity.  However, your sense of hearing is not likely to be upset by the shaking (as long as you can hear over the roar).  Here is another case for headphones,
3) Enjoying a mindful cup of coffee of tea.  Again…you’re not going anywhere.  Why not fill up (not too full) a cup of your favorite morning drink, and just completely experience the pleasure of taste (another sense that is immune to shaking).
4) Take pleasure in another sense that can’t be destroyed by loud, shaking sounds…your sense of imagination.  Vesting is a good time to try some guided imagery.  Guided imagery audios can be found online or in bookstores, and cover anything from learning how to relax, to improving confidence, to perfecting your golf swing.  A favorite one of mine, given the setting, is to imagine that I am receiving the World’s greatest massage on a beach somewhere in Hawaii.  In this case, I am not guided by a tape, but by my own imagination.
5) Surf the internet.  Join the 21st century.  There is ALWAYS something to read or look at online.  For fun, sign up to StumbleUpon.  Here you can create a profile describing your likes and interests, and cool websites are just generated for your pleasure at the click of the mouse.  If you like it, give it a thumbs up rating, and you get more like it.  If you don’t, thumbs down….they won’t send you to another one like it.  It is WAY fun, and easy to kill hours on!  It’s amazing how, after a few times playing with it, the site knows you and your likes like the back of it’s….whatever is at the back of a web program.
6) Meditation intervals.  I say “intervals” because I’ve tried…it’s really hard to meditate while shaking for the whole 20-30 minutes…especially if you are simultaneously nebulizing.  But what is NOT so hard is to do short periods of meditation-–say a minute or two–– and then relax and think about whatever for a few minutes.  Repeat this a few times and time is up before you know it.  Most people think “they can’t meditate”…like it is a skill or something.  It’s not.  It is simply a way of paying attention, on purpose, to something.  An easy thing to meditate on is your breath.  It is always there.  All you do is watch is and pay attention to how it travels in and out of your body…without forcing anything.  Just watching it.
7) One of my favorites:  Pet a dog.  Here is one of my favorites.  This is Jaxon.  He loves my Vest, and comes running when he hears it turn on.  Do you know why?  Because he knows I am cornered for 20 minutes, and have nothing better to do than to pet him.
8) Hug a kid and make funny noises as you talk to them.  This used to be a hoot when the boys were younger.  Now they look at me like I’ve lost my mind.
9) ChiGong mindful stretching.  Lately, I have been doing a 20 minute Chi Gong routine during my Vest treatments.  It’s great, because I work on my flexibility and relax at the same time.  All of the exercises are VERY easy…really they are just stretches….and can be done while I’m teathered to the machine 3 feet away.  It is too difficult to explain them, so look for my “Chi Gong” Vest workout in a TouTube video coming your way soon.
10) Write blog posts.  Or better yet, comment to mine, and let me know how YOU pass the time!

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