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5 Things People Who Once Had Cancer Want to Tell You

5 Things People Who Once Had Cancer Want to Tell You

Hearing you have cancer is life-changing and overwhelming in many ways. It is true that some cancer diagnoses do not have a cure, but that is not the case for all. Many cancer patients have come back from their fight in full remission, with a new, hope-filled outlook on life. Here are a few ways that cancer survivors’ perspective on their lives changed after they went through their own illnesses.

1. We know not to get caught up in statistics

It can be easy to spend hours on Google searching your particular cancer and coming across articles and testimonials that will leave you with little hope. It is important when you are diagnosed to avoid the black hole of the Internet, and instead discuss concerns and reliable resources with your primary doctor. Every cancer patient is different and their body reacts to the illness in a way that is unique to their physiological make-up. Having cancer provides enough stress as it is, and it is important to focus on the positive instead of the negative.

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2. We know to be our own advocate

If something does not feel right with your treatment plan, it is important to be proactive and get a second opinion from another medical professional. Doctors will always differ in what they believe in is the right process to fight cancer and so getting a second and even a third opinion is crucial to your overall recovery. Of equal importance, listen to your gut when you think that something feels right, because it usually is.

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3. We know that it is best to take it one day at a time

Having a cancer diagnosis is an overwhelming life event that will make you want to think about the bigger picture and focus on the future. It is important instead to focus on each day as it comes and remain in the present. This will help you relieve a lot of stress and also make you feel that you are better equipped to tackle the day-to-day problems that are bound to arise.

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4. We know that you do not have to face cancer by yourself

Dealing with cancer is a scary thing, but what makes it easier is finding a support group where members can relate to exactly what you are going through. You can find these groups at your local hospital or clinic, community college or adult learning center, or through your primary doctor. Making the effort to connect with others who are experiencing a similar illness is important, because not only does being social boost your mental state, it can give you the positive encouragement to recover. If one-on-one therapy is more your cup of tea, seek out a mental health professional in your area that can help you through some of the complex emotions that are associated with cancer.

5. We know that taking care of your body and mind is of the utmost importance

There will be some days where you just feel like lying on the couch and eating comfort foods. This is perfectly fine to do, but it is also important to continue to nourish your body with the proper nutrients and eat a balanced diet. It is also important to remain as active as possible, even if it is just a 20-minute walk around the block. Taking care of your mind is also just as important as well, whether it is doing restorative yoga or taking a few minutes to meditate. Just because your body is sick does not mean it cannot heal and it is important to do everything in your power to help it do so.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via flickr.com

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Last Updated on May 15, 2019

How to Tap Into the Power of Positivity

How to Tap Into the Power of Positivity

As it appears, the human mind is not capable of not thinking, at least on the subconscious level. Our mind is always occupied by thoughts, whether we want to or not, and they influence our every action.

“Happiness cannot come from without, it comes from within.” – Helen Keller

When we are still children, our thoughts seem to be purely positive. Have you ever been around a 4-year old who doesn’t like a painting he or she drew? I haven’t. Instead, I see glee, exciting and pride in children’s eyes. But as the years go by, we clutter our mind with doubts, fears and self-deprecating thoughts.

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Just imagine then how much we limit ourselves in every aspect of our lives if we give negative thoughts too much power! We’ll never go after that job we’ve always wanted because our nay-saying thoughts make us doubt our abilities. We’ll never ask that person we like out on a date because we always think we’re not good enough.

We’ll never risk quitting our job in order to pursue the life and the work of our dreams because we can’t get over our mental barrier that insists we’re too weak, too unimportant and too dumb. We’ll never lose those pounds that risk our health because we believe we’re not capable of pushing our limits. We’ll never be able to fully see our inner potential because we simply don’t dare to question the voices in our head.

But enough is enough! It’s time to stop these limiting beliefs and come to a place of sanity, love and excitement about life, work and ourselves.

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So…how exactly are we to achieve that?

It’s not as hard as it may seem; you just have to practice, practice, practice. Here are a few ideas on how you can get started.

1. Learn to substitute every negative thought with a positive one.

Every time a negative thought crawls into your mind, replace it with a positive thought. It’s just like someone writes a phrase you don’t like on a blackboard and then you get up, erase it and write something much more to your liking.

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2. See the positive side of every situation, even when you are surrounded by pure negativity.

This one is a bit harder to put into practice, which does not mean it’s impossible.

You can find positivity in everything by mentally holding on to something positive, whether this be family, friends, your faith, nature, someone’s sparkling eyes or whatever other glimmer of beauty. If you seek it, you will find it.

3. At least once a day, take a moment and think of 5 things you are grateful for.

This will lighten your mood and give you some perspective of what is really important in life and how many blessings surround you already.

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4. Change the mental images you allow to enter your mind.

How you see yourself and your surroundings make a huge difference to your thinking. It is like watching a DVD that saddens and frustrates you, completely pulling you down. Eject that old DVD, throw it away and insert a new, better, more hopeful one instead.

So, instead of dwelling on dark, negative thoughts, consciously build and focus on positive, light and colorful images, thoughts and situations in your mind a few times a day.

If you are persistent and keep on working on yourself, your mind will automatically reject its negative thoughts and welcome the positive ones.

And remember: You are (or will become) what you think you are. This is reason enough to be proactive about whatever is going on in your head.

Featured photo credit: Kyaw Tun via unsplash.com

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