Self Care Practises to protect your spirit while dealing with cancer

Note from Meah:

“I’m very happy to share this article written by Scott Sanders, although you may not have been expecting to find such an article on this page I still wanted to share it.  Cancer is related to hormonal health, especially hormonally fuelled cancers such as breast, ovarian or uterine.  If you or someone you know is going through cancer supporting the mind body connection is so important and this is why I’ve included this article.  Disclaimer: I haven’t been paid to share this information, nor am I affiliated with Scott Sanders Professionally.  Enjoy!”

The Self-Care Practices That Can Protect Your Spirit While Dealing With Cancer

Cancer. It’s a word that all too many of us have had to deal with in our lives, and the impact on our spiritual wellness can be severe. If you have been diagnosed with or are being treated for cancer, you’re all too familiar with the toll it can take on your body, soul, and mind. Cancer affects every ounce of your being, but there are a few ways you can remain positive. Here are five practical self-care practices for maintaining spiritual wellness when you’re living with cancer.

Take Care of Your Mental Health

Cancer is a disease of the body, but often the most overlooked symptoms impact the mind. The emotional and psychological effects of cancer and cancer treatment can often overshadow the physical discomfort — or at least make it worse. Taking care of your mental health is key to staying positive while dealing with cancer. Find constructive ways to express emotions such as fear and anger. Start a journal to write down your feelings and get them out of your head and onto paper. Visiting a counselor also may be a good idea. There are counselors who specialize in grief support and handling patients who are affected by serious illness. 

Try to Relax and Rest

The anxiety and discomfort of cancer can make it tough to get any beneficial rest. You may find it difficult to relax and even harder to get any decent sleep. However, rest is essential for healing, mental clarity, and spiritual strength. So, if you are having problems unwinding, take steps to find some solutions. Make your home as comfortable as possible by having someone help you clean remove clutter. A deep clean will also rid your space of dirt and dander that can be dangerous for those in chemotherapy. If you’re still having issues relaxing, speak with your physician about medications or practices that may help you get the sleep you need.

Connect with Friends and Family

Many cancer patients distance themselves from loved ones as a result of depression or a feeling of isolation. However, spending time with friends and family can actually help keep you calm and uplifted through this ordeal. Talk to those closest to you about your feelings and fears. Make plans to take part in celebrations and find ways to have fun with your loved ones, even if it’s just planning a relaxing movie night at home. Social connections are essential for spiritual health and can have positive impacts on your mental and physical health as well. 

Practice Low-Impact Activity

Physical activity plays a role in the production of endorphins, the chemicals responsible for inhibiting pain and producing happiness. If you are weak or in pain from cancer, however, getting exercise can prove especially challenging. Try to stay as active as you can with exercises that do not require lot of strength, time, or effort. Spend some time outside with a friend walking among the trees or get out and do a little gardening. You can also pick up some light home gym equipment, such as resistance bands and a yoga mat, to help strengthen your body without causing you additional stress and discomfort.

Look for Ways to Ease Your Symptoms

Cancer and chemotherapy can have a variety of unwelcome, and unique, effects on your body. That’s why it’s important to find natural remedies that provide you comfort and are easy to obtain. Start with your diet and include foods that can lessen the negative side effects of treatments and procedures. Think about adding helpful herbs to your treatment as well, but check with your doctor to ensure safety. He/she may be able to recommend medicinal plants that could ease nausea and pain and provide you a prescription for these natural remedies.

Keeping your spirit strong when you have cancer has its challenges. The physical, mental, and emotional impact of living with a potentially terminal disease can be overwhelming. It’s important to take small steps to help yourself stay strong and remain positive.

Photo Credit: Unsplash

Written by: Scott Sanders, Author of “Put Yourself First” – available Summer 2018 more info at: https://cancerwell.org/

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