5 Things Chronic Illness Has Taught Me About Laziness

BBC journalist Jam Prescod shares five things she’s learnt about laziness through living with lupus.

Listen to Chronic, our anti-wellness podcast about living well when you’re chronically unwell. Available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you listen to podcasts – just search for “Chronic”.

Chronic
Chronic

Jameisha Prescod is a BBC journalist, and founder of You Look Okay To Me, a platform promoting awareness of invisible illness. She also lives with lupus, a long-term, auto-immune condition.

This week, she’s joining HuffPost’s Lucy Pasha-Robinson on the Chronic podcast to talk all things pain: how radical it is to vocalise your pain as a Black woman; the legacy of not being believed; and the emotional toll of adjusting to new limitations.

Here, Jam shares five things she’s learnt about laziness since being diagnosed in 2014:

1. Having a chronic illness does not mean you’re lazy. I know you may have been called that in the past, I know I have, but you’re literally living with a long-term condition – and it’s hard.

2. Rest when needed. I used to feel really self conscious about resting, but I had to kind of get over it, because if my body needs to rest, it needs to rest, and I should give it what it needs.

3. Our worth is not measured by our productivity. It doesn’t mean I have good character, so I think we need to let go of that concept.

4. Laziness is a term used to shame people into productivity. That’s very harmful.

5. Have more compassion for others. Rather than thinking someone is lazy, ask yourself what you know about them. You don’t know why they need more rest, or why they feel unmotivated. So rather than judging, we need to have more compassion.

Hear more from Jam on this week’s episode of Chronic, available now on Apple podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts – just search for “Chronic”.

Follow Jam Prescod on Twitter @JamPrescod or Instagram @YouLookOkayToMe. Stay tuned for more on all things Chronic by following host @LucyPasha on Twitter.

Want to reach the team? Drop us a line at chronic@huffpost.com