Last weekend I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to attend the Joint Decisions Empowerment Summit for the third time. Since the original summit in 2014, I'm thrilled I've had the opportunity to get to know and become friends with the amazing bloggers who are involved. There have also been a few fantastic additions to the team since last year. If you aren't already following these amazing bloggers, you should certainly check them out asap!
- Wren from Rheumablog
- Angela from Inflamed: Living with Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Carla from Carla's Corner
- Cathy from The Life And Adventures of Cateepoo
- Kirsten from Not Standing Still's Disease (and the mastermind behind Chronic Sex!)
- Molly from And Then You're At Jax
- Kenzie from Life According to Kenz
- Rick from RADiabetes
Since the Summit was near Janssen's home base this year, we got to start with a tour of the labs where they research, develop, and produce biologic medications. I really enjoyed the tour and have already shared about my experience here.
The Summit then launched into a review of the Joint Decisions program over the past years, and a discussion of what the program has in the pipeline for 2017. I think the program is doing some really great work to support people who are living with RA, so if you aren't already following Joint Decisions on Facebook you can do so here to stay in the know - and at the Summit they also announced the launch of their Instagram!
The Summit went on to offer the bloggers a Self Care workshop, where we got to chat about mindfulness and other self care techniques with the amazing Dr. Laurie Ferguson who works with Creaky Joints. Then we got to watch the live Facebook chat with Rhonda Waters of the Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute. Rhonda has great information about how to better manage energy and expand energy capacity, and so it was fun to watch her answer questions from viewers who were watching live. (If you missed the live event you can still watch the video on Facebook!)
On the last day of the Summit we got to chat with Dr. Ellen Field, a rheumatologist who shared her strategies for developing better relationships between doctors and patients. Finally, we had the opportunity to meet Steve Rosenfield of the What I Be Project - a social experiment that has turned into a global movement about honesty and empowerment. We also had the opportunity to participate in the project ourselves, so keep an eye out for me on the project's Instagram page!
Though I have to admit to being pretty exhausted and a little overwhelmed from traveling so soon after returning from the California Coast Classic, I'm really pleased I had the opportunity to attend the Joint Decisions Empowerment Summit again this year. I look forward to seeing where the program goes from this point forward!
*Janssen covered my travel expenses for this weekend.