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Estelle Zauner-Maughan is a chiropractor and owner
of Naturally Chiropractic in Tyneside.

I was recently faced with quite a significant personal challenge. Going in to hospital for what I thought and planned for (a minor cartilage clean up in my knee), I was suddenly faced with the worst case scenario that I was aware of as a possibility but Little Miss Positivity had dismissed as a real option. Reality saw me facing the longer and more challenging recovery associated with a ligament reconstruction (the cartilage as it turned out was fine!). My short term goals were immediately and drastically changed and I found myself plunged into a depression and healing challenge I hadn't planned for.

I like to study ahead for challenges so I can plan and prepare for the task ahead. Want to climb a mountain? These are the training steps and expected challenges to getting there. I had no idea about an ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) reconstruction or the rehabilitation involved. The mindset I needed to heal and recover in the best way possible was obliterated by a big black cloud.

I am really fortunate to have a supportive family and social group who were able to help me celebrate all the positive gains along the way, but my Life/Business Coach put me on to the most amazing tool to help blow away the cloud. In order to get my mind focussed on all the things I could still do and the things I needed to address (but didn't quite realise they needed addressing), he introduced me to the Clean Sweep programme, which is part of www.betterme.org. You can do this online or print it out and tick things off as you go. There are 100 things you can do to streamline your mind and your life. To start with, my scores were a bit on the pathetic side. The program highlighted some basic life challenges or tasks that I hadn't thought of doing to help me get to where I needed to be (back on my feet and setting/chasing those goals again!!!). Having the time to sit on my backside and focus on my checklist, it was a relatively short time before I was hitting the 20-22 mark on all sections.

Clearing that mental clutter has enabled me to notice (as has my Physiotherapist and Chiropractor) how much more rapidly my knee is recovering and strengthening up! Focussing on completing tasks has given me a new sense of purpose and motivation I needed in order to get back to healing and living the life I was given.

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