Spoon Theory

The spoon theory is a metaphorical way of describing the energy someone has available for their daily activities. This theory helps us to understand people with both visible and invisible disabilities.

Each person has a different number of spoons within a day. For some, they may have more than ten spoons which means they can perform more than ten tasks. While for others, they only may have five spoons which means they will only have the capacity for five tasks. Each person has to make a conscious choice about what tasks to complete in a day. Some have the luxury of being given an abundance of spoons every day while others may only have enough to survive.

According to Christine Miserandino the author of the spoon theory, “The difference in being sick and being healthy is having to consciously think about things when the rest of the world doesn’t have to” (Miserandino, 2020, P.1).

Each person has a different number of spoons and that can be counted. It is important that we prioritize our spoons and choose wisely what we can accomplish in a day. To balance our lives in the midst of a spoon shortage due to chronic illnesses and a constantly changing world, we have to begin incorporating healthy habits to create balance within our lives. This may include meditation in the morning to slowly begin moving your body. Even ten minutes of breath work and intentional movement can help tune your body and strengthen you both mentally and physically. It is normal to struggle getting started in the morning but adding small intentional

tasks can help create a healthier routine to utilize the number of spoons you have over time. Planning out your spoons while doing intentional breath work can help start your day off feeling like there are more spoons than originally planned.

What spoons do you have every day? How do you prioritize them?


Cristol, H, (2021, July 7). Living With Chronic Disease: What is the Spoon theory? WebMD. Retrieved July 21, 2022. From https://www.webmd.com/multiple-sclerosis/features/spoon-theory#:~:text=When%20the%20spoons%20were%20gone,the%20lingo%20of%20autoimmune%20disease.

Miserandino, C. (2013, April 26). The Spoon Theory. But You Don’t Look Sick? Support for Those With Invisible Illness or Chronic Illness. Retrieved July 21, 2022, from https://butyoudontlooksick.com/articles/written-by-christine/the-spoon-theory/