Stay Diligent with Parkinson Voice Exercises: Think SMART
Living with Parkinson’s disease can be a challenging journey, but here’s the good news: regular Parkinson specific voice exercises can greatly slow the progression of voice, speech and swallowing difficulty. The key is to stay diligent and motivated in your daily routine. To help you along the way, we’ve introduced the SMART acronym—a powerful tool designed to guide those with Parkinson’s disease in their quest for improved communication and swallowing abilities.
S – Schedule:
Life can indeed get busy, but just as you prioritize dentist or doctor appointments, your voice exercises deserve a special place on your calendar. Make a habit of scheduling your exercise time, and commit to showing up every time you’ve scheduled. You’ll be amazed at the progress you make when you treat these exercises as non-negotiable appointments with yourself.
M – Make It a Priority:
Remember the saying, “You always have time for things you put first.” Your voice exercises should be a priority, not just another item on your to-do list. By giving them the importance they deserve, you’re taking a significant step towards improving your speech and voice. Consider this an investment in your well-being and your ability to communicate effectively.
A – Accountable:
Sharing your commitment with others can be a powerful motivator. Let your friends and family know about your dedication to daily voice exercises. Ask them to check in with you regularly and encourage you on your journey. Accountability can make a world of difference, as the support of loved ones can provide the extra push you need.
R – Reward Yourself:
Progress, no matter how small it may seem, deserves celebration. After completing your voice exercises, treat yourself to a well-deserved reward. Whether it’s a soothing cappuccino, a stroll in the park, or a relaxing Netflix show, these small rewards can make your journey more enjoyable. Recognizing your accomplishments reinforces your commitment.
T – Team Up:
Surrounding yourself with positive and motivational people is key to staying motivated. Consider finding a “speech partner” within your Parkinson’s community. You can arrange to do your voice exercises together or at the same time, providing each other with support and motivation. Together, you’ll thrive and make significant strides in your speech and voice improvement.
The Struggle is Real
Individuals with Parkinson’s disease face unique challenges when it comes to self-motivation to initiate and sustain healthy lifestyle habits. This difficulty can be attributed to the deficiency of dopamine, a critical neurotransmitter in the brain responsible for motivation and reward. As dopamine plays a pivotal role in the brain’s reward system, it becomes increasingly challenging for those with Parkinson’s to find the internal drive to engage in exercise, adhere to dietary restrictions, or maintain other health-promoting behaviors.
This deficiency can lead to a vicious cycle, as a lack of motivation can contribute to a decline in physical activity and a lessened commitment to lifestyle changes that could potentially improve their quality of life. Supporting individuals with Parkinson’s in finding alternative sources of motivation and implementing strategies to overcome these challenges is crucial for their overall well-being.
Remember… Think SMART
In your journey to combat the communication and swallowing challenges that Parkinson’s disease may present, staying diligent and motivated is crucial. Remember the SMART acronym: Schedule your exercises, Make them a priority, be Accountable to yourself and loved ones, Reward your accomplishments, and Team up with supportive individuals. Your commitment to daily Parkinson’s voice exercises will lead to remarkable progress, giving you the confidence and strength to face the challenges ahead.