"I just wanted to say thank you! I've picked up so many good tips from you and they are really helping! They seem so obvious now, but I hadn't thought of them before. I've got fatigue today (because it was my son's birthday yesterday, so I overdid it, but I'm not blaming myself!) so rather than not doing my physio, I broke it up and took more breaks. Instead of it taking 20 mins, it took about 45 and I even had a lie down on my pilates mat before the last exercise! It seems so obvious, but I just didn't think of doing that before. So now I can exercise, even on a bad day!"
Angela Matthews April 24, 2017
"Jo is a wonderful addition to the Limitless Travel team. She demonstrated very high levels of professionalism and commitment from the outset. She listens to and acts upon advice but also challenges any assumptions or actions she does not agree with, I feel is of vital importance in any organisation.
The role Jo took with us did not exist previously and involved remote working with minimal guidance. This never seemed to phase Jo and she accepted the situation with positivity and determination. She bonded very well with every member of the team, used her initiative and showed real maturity in her ability to complete more than expected without supervision.
I have been most impressed with Jo’s ability to combine her knowledge of OT practices with the business world. She has advised us and other organisations on how to improve their working environment while using her skills to create a ‘commercial’ accessibility audit checklist for hoteliers.
It has been a pleasure to have Jo working with us at Limitless, I know that every member of the team and everyone she has encountered has been incredibly impressed with what she has achieved."
Angus Drummond Founder of Limitless Travel limitlesstravel.org August 11, 2016
"I had an appointment with Jo via Skype for what things could be done to help make my life easier in terms of doing things different/ adaptions etc. She was really friendly and helpful and gave a great comprehensive list of things that might help me. I'd definitely recommend her!"
Anne Elizabeth Personal Shopping for Disability Aids April 24, 2017
"As an OT currently working with the military many of my patients suffer from chronic pain and fatigue in addition to multiple complex injuries. This blog has been an invaluable resource in explaining the importance of pain and fatigue management in a simple, easily readable and relatable way. The blog also provides my patients a resource they can refer back to after sessions, increasing their knowledge and understanding. I particularly find the introduction to pacing post and the decision making tool to be great when working with this client group."
Anon. Occupational Therapist April 5, 2016
“I’ve been meaning to comment for ages, I just wanted to say that it’s helped me so much. You get such mixed advice from health professionals and all saying different stuff it’s hard to fight a way through it by yourself sometimes and work out what’s right, or how to apply to normal everyday stuff they understandably don’t have time to discuss with you. But your blog has really helped me do that, and make sense of where and why some of the conflicting advice has come in. I found your earlier ones really helpful when I was first diagnosed to get my head round it and what I felt, but your more recent ones have also been really helpful. I have honestly not found any other resource as insightful as this or that I can apply so easily to everyday things. Your one on pacing for example – plenty of people will tell you to ‘pace yourself’ but it’s not so easy to apply in real life…but your explanation was in a much more practical way. They are great to read when you first write them but also useful to refer back to with specific questions when you think ‘oooh I know there were some good tips for this…’. So thank you!”
Anon. April 5, 2016
"Just wanted to send a review for the excellent appointment that I had with Jo last night. She was incredibly helpful and knowledgeable, was wonderfully accommodating (I suffer from anxiety and can't even video message with my partner! but she sorted that out). I would absolutely recommend for anyone to talk to Jo - to get advice and guidance. An absolute pleasure, and I look forward to the pacing class!"
Anon Flare-up Plan May 4, 2017
“I was diagnosed with hypermobile Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS) a year ago after twenty years of serious health problems. I contacted Jo after meeting her at a conference. I needed advice on managing my hypermobility and fatigue as although my local General Practitioner was empathetic, she was not familiar with EDS. Jo however was! She has been very helpful in assisting me with navigating the world of specialist equipment, as well as for advice on how the NHS might be able to help. I would highly recommend her. She gave me tips on what NHS services might be useful, what they may be able to provide and what might be sensible to buy myself! “
Anon. February 12, 2018
"When I was diagnosed with ME and Postural Tachycardia, I didn't have any idea what equipment was out there that might help me manage daily life and the difficulties I was having. Jo provided me with loads of information that helped me know what to ask for when buying a wheelchair, as well as lots of other aids that have given me back my independence. She is incredibly knowledgeable and has a wealth of experience."
Becky August 26, 2016
"Jo is a truly lovely person and so far I've not found anything regarding disability that she *doesn't* know anything about! So far, she's advised me on things like which wheelchair to buy (including cushions, backrests, power-assisted wheels), how to insure said wheelchair, how to walk the dog while in a wheelchair, kinesiology taping, ring splints, physiotherapy, pain management, getting an accurate diagnosis... I'm sure there's a million other things! She has always got a few good ideas about how to get around whatever barrier I'm facing and I couldn't be more grateful. Her blog is also a super-useful resource for all manner of information, she has a post about most things! She has a wealth of experience and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend her to anyone who is need of this kind of advice. Thank you Jo!"
Becky Linnett March 4, 2017
“Jo’s articles read like talking to the cool friend you met in an EDS support group. Relaxed and technical at the same time.”
Beth Walloch April 5, 2016
“Jo is creative & artistic with a flair for making something unique. Her positive and dynamic personality combined with a love of life, mean she is an inspirational and motivational asset both online and in the real world. Jo’s blog inspires and supports others to live with & in spite of their disability”
Catherine Pautard April 5, 2016
“Having known Jo for several years now, she is a very positive and inspiring person to know. Despite her many daily challenges, I have never seen her dote on the problems or lack a smile on her face!
A very positive and inspirational individual and a person well worth listening to, to aspire to be as positive!”
Darren Eves April 5, 2016
"Both myself and my son have been working with Jo over the past few months and it’s been a really positive experience. Jo is a really good listener and is full of ideas. We began with a Pacing Masterclass each and this really helped us to pace ourselves more effectively through daily pain and fatigue. As a bonus we can co-ordinate our pacing using the same system which makes organising family life much easier.
Our Flare Up Plans came next and this has also been an enormous help. Trying to organise a considerable number of self-care strategies for two people with several health conditions each had been a bit of a nightmare and I had been forgetting things. Not anymore! Our Flare Up Plans are the best examples of care plans we’ve ever had (and we’ve had quite a few!). They pull everything together in one place and really take the strain out of managing so many chronic symptoms and because of Jo’s help we’re feeling far less frazzled.
I can recommend Jo’s services without hesitation. I only wish I’d discover her sooner."
Denise & Alex Pacing Masterclass, Flare-Up Planning October 18, 2017
"I have personally, and professionally, known Jo for 8 years. Jo used to work with the HMSA as a volunteer before training to become a qualified Occupational Therapist.
Jo is an exceptionally gifted OT, who understands the difficulties that disability can cause. She will work tirelessly with individuals to find tools and strategies to maximise independence and dignity.
As the CEO of the Hypermobility Syndromes Association, I had no hesitation in asking Jo to become the HMSA's Professional Liaison Coordinator, and to work in a voluntary capacity in educating and advising our members, and the professionals charged with providing services for this population.
I would happily refer members of the HMSA, the public and indeed my family to Jo for assistance and support."
Donna Wicks CEO of the Hypermobility Syndromes Association. March 4, 2017
“Jo gives wonderful uplifting advice. Her combined experience as both a patient with a chronic evolving condition & as an OT in training really does make her advice unique. She genuinely understands the challenges but is also able to offer a balanced view on the benefits of various solutions/adaptions. She gives balanced views rather than solely pushing her own perspective, she highlights differences in opinion or strategy giving information to allow people to make up their own minds. Her advice on pacing and bracing have been two pieces I’ve come back to on several occasions.”
Emily Burns Doctor April 5, 2016
"Jo is so incredibly well suited to her role as a qualified OT. She is genuinely qualified not just by study and acreditation but also by personal experience. Through Jo's own experience she has learnt that living life despite disabilities or health challenges means thinking of solutions, whether that be adaptions or alternatives. When she teaches about the value of pacing, she also knows the reality of working pacing into a life and the challenges of achieving it and that means you can be honest and real with her resulting in better outcomes. Many of her blog posts have resulted in me making changes to the way I manage my health, for example I am now working to incorporate physiotherapy into my daily routine. Knowing Jo has done so herself helps me silence the voice that might otherwise say I can't do it and that "they" don't understand how tired I am after work. I'm yet to ask for an opinion or advice and not either be pointed to a useful resource or given helpful input. In my work as a coach for people with chronic health problems I will be actively referring/encouraging people to get in touch with Jo and get her insight and support."
Emily Burns March 4, 2017
"Jo's blogs are like that little voice in my head that's telling me that I ought to be pacing, etc, but equally like chatting with a friend about the times that it all goes a bit wrong!"
Ginny Santer April 5, 2016
"I had a half hour session by Skype with Jo in preparation for an Access to Work assessment for my workplace. Previous experience with OTs has left me feeling very let down so it was wonderful to get lots of helpful suggestions that I wouldn't even have thought of. My assessor took on board all of the suggestions that Jo had made as sensible and appropriate equipment for my needs. I felt that Jo understood my issues and needs and all of her suggestions were well considered. I would definitely recommend her despite the distance - the knowledge at the other end of a Skype call is far more valuable than someone in the same room who doesn't offer any solutions!"
Ginny Santer Freestyle Appointment August 16, 2017
“Jo has a gift for communicating the battles of coping with hypermobility with a smile. Through her blog and posts she encourages me to adapt and fight on. Well worth reading for the practical tips alone.”
Graham Venn April 5, 2016
"Very helpful with advice and knows her stuff. Also know how to keep advice confidential when it is a delicate situation. And she is lovely."
Graham Venn March 4, 2017
"Jo is really approachable and always happy to answer questions, however big or seemingly trivial. She has helped me to solve problems and to understand my difficulties with a positive and practical attitude. Fab OT!"
Hannah Whitehouse March 4, 2017
"I have read your blog, I think it's pretty amazing. I myself, have hypermobility syndrome not as extreme as your case. I used all your advice and techniques along with my doctors and occupational therapist. I'm 18 years of age and will be studying occupational therapy as well in the future."
Huyaam Samuels April 5, 2016
“Reading Jo’s blog has really spurred me on to try new things & work hard to find ways of becoming more confident in accepting my disability in a more positive light. She is a talented writer who always has something interesting to say. A thoroughly lovely person & inspiration."
Julie Hyans April 5, 2016
''Thank you for your candor, honesty, encouragement and advice. You have helped my daughter to feel good about herself despite dealing with the difficulties of EDS. You are a super-hero! You need a JBOT super-hero cape!"
Karen Walter April 5, 2016
"Recently I had a pacing masterclass with Jo, who I have been in contact with over the past few months about several problems regarding my condition. Jo suggested that a pacing masterclass would be good as we could talk face to face (or skype to skype in this case). Jo has a wealth of knowledge when it comes to pacing and she delivers it in a very personal and passionate way.
As a fellow OT (student) I knew about the theory of pacing and a few ways to put it into practice, but Jo has been using pacing as a tool for herself for years so has a lot of experience using this and has some fantastic examples of how to use pacing in everyday life, this is one of the many advantages of being an expert patient and an OT.
The masterclass was pretty informal but it makes it feel less clinical, and allows for better communication between client and OT. Overall the masterclass has been a great help as I have started to put into place some of the advice Jo provided and as a result I am starting to do more day to day, moving towards my goal of going back to uni to finish my degree."
Kayleigh Webster Pacing Masterclass March 7, 2017
"Wow...just wow... just had a pacing masterclass with Jo and I feel so excited, motivated happy. Here is to a new chapter in my life, looking after myself whilst still being productive. I can do this! Everything made complete sense. I found myself nodding and giggling at her examples as they really hit home. Jo really understands fatigue, long-term conditions and how to better look after yourself. If I could give more than 5 starts I would. Thank you Jo! X"
Kim Clayden Pacing Masterclass April 24, 2017
"Wow...just wow... just had a pacing masterclass with JBOT - Jo Southall and I feel so excited, motivated happy. Here is to a new chapter in my life, looking after myself whilst still being productive. I can do this! Everything made complete sense. I found myself nodding and giggling at her examples as they really hit home. Jo really understands fatigue, long term conditions and how to better look after yourself. If I could give more than 5 starts I would. Thank you Jo!"
Kim Clayden Pacing Masterclass August 16, 2017
"Life changing to be honest. I first contacted Jo to ask about flare ups, the flare in question turned out to be low levels of various things in my blood. Which prompted me to ask about pacing, let me tell you, through implementing Jo's explanation of pacing, I have lessened my pain and actually increased my activity, without the associated fatigue! I would recommend Jo's sessions to anyone and everyone."
Lexy Barrable Pacing Masterclass August 16, 2017
"Jo goes above and beyond. Suggestions were so spot on for bracing!"
Marion Moon March 4, 2017
“I found Jo’s posts really helpful because she’s talking from her own experience and the information is always in-depth. She’s also very helpful in replying to any additional questions that you may have, even if those questions are very trivial.”
Megan Kol May 22, 2016
"So much more than bath boards and perching stools! Jo is incredibly creative, knowledgeable and always up for a challenge. If you are allergic to cumbersome beige mobility aids Jo is the OT for you"
Naomi Noo March 4, 2017
"Wow. A pleasant, compassionate and very knowledgeable lady. Very quick to respond to messages. Listened without judging me or making me feel like I was a problem. Nothing was too much trouble. Suggested a variety of options for my problem. Would definitely recommend and use again."
Rachel Carey March 4, 2017
"Jo is awesome. Very knowledgeable and easy to talk to. She is great at listening and taking your concerns and previous experiences into account."
Shimra Jamie Fine March 4, 2017
"Jo helped me to create a flare up plan to manage my chronic pain, fatigue etc and 30 minutes talking with her helped me more than any time I'd spent with OT's in a hospital. She took her time, went through everything in detail and her experience of her own condition really helped her to appreciate my limits I think. She introduced me to ideas and techniques that I hadn't thought of and my flare up plan is already making a difference!"
Shona Cobb Flare up planning. March 4, 2017
"Jo has been invaluable in helping me adjust mentally and emotionally to my long term health condition/diagnosis and also in helping me stay in work (my biggest concern). Jo's practical suggestions are making all the difference in coping with my sometimes long and stressful days and I plan on working with her regularly as my needs change."
Freestyle Appointment May 5, 2017
If you would like to submit your own testimonial then please don’t hesitate to get in touch via the contact tab. Testimonials only have to be a few lines long and please be honest. You can also have your comments published anonymously if you don’t want your name shared. Thanks so much to those who have already shared their comments.