Part of coping and thriving with a chronic health condition like heart disease means being an active self-manager. This means learning the skills to take care of your health.
Being a self-manager means that you:
- know about your own health conditions
- learn skills to make healthy lifestyle choices
- manage the symptoms of your health condition
- organize your day-to-day activities so that you stay healthy
- solve problems that may come up
Become a partner in your care along with your doctor and cardiovascular prevention and rehabilitation team. Ask questions and make sure you understand what is being said and done to you.
Setting goals and action plans are the best way to help us make changes in our lives. Before you start setting goals, it is helpful to spend some time thinking about and developing a vision for yourself. What does being healthy look or feel like to you? Each person will answer this question differently.
Once you know what your vision for yourself is, you can then set goals and build action plans to help you get there.
You do not have to manage your health on your own. You have the support of your health care team (your family doctor, your cardiovascular prevention and rehabilitation team, and other health professionals). The support from your family and friends and others living with heart disease can also help to support you.