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At the risk of oversharing, I'm recovering from a case of shingles.

Yes, shingles — that ugly, painful viral illness that all of us hope we'll never get and that about half of us will end up getting anyway.

Here's the kicker: My case of shingles was on my face.

Hey, if you're going to have a painful viral disease, you might as well have a disfiguring version while you're at it, right?

I promise I'm not going to get all gross on you. I could, but I won't. You can thank me later.

What I am going to do is give you a short list of things I've learned while lying flat on my back, moaning in excruciating pain.

  1. Expect the unexpected. There's always something out there just waiting to ruin your day. Sure, it's a pain in the ass. Sure, you're going to have to make some changes. But if you condition yourself to expect those challenges, you'll be better able to act when they arrive. And if you can reframe those challenges as opportunities, all the better. Know this: Things aren't always going to go your way. Accept it. Deal with it. Move on.
  2. This too shall pass. No matter how much pain you're in, you will get better. There'll be times — about halfway through a 36-hour, shingles-provoked migraine, for instance — when you'll swear you won't. But you will, and it will feel glorious.
  3. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. If you can handle today's pain, tomorrow's will seem like a walk in the park.

Resilience, positivity and action trump change — even the really painful kind of change — every time.

Heavy doses of modern medicine don't hurt, either.

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