Living With Cancer Tips
Living with cancer isn’t easy, but the right mindset and the right support can make a world of difference to how you feel day to day. For so many of us, cancer is now something to live with and fight against, not a life sentence. If you’re determined to enjoy life while coping with cancer, here are 10 things that can help you feel better during your journey.
1. Take a deep breath
It might sound simple, but with so much going on, it can really help to sit back, take a deep breath and get back to “you”. With so much advice, support and information coming your way, it’s important to give yourself the mental space you need to do things your way. So remember, when the going gets especially tough, breathe in, breathe out and centre yourself. It can be easy to become overwhelmed, this trick can help you to keep calm, reduce stress, know your own mind and carry on.
2. Don’t stop at your doctor
Your oncologist isn’t the only place you can turn to for support with your health. Many people find alternative therapies, counselling, fitness classes, dietary support and other activities helpful during and after treatment. It’s all about feeling the best you possibly can. For some of us that might mean taking an art therapy class, for others it could be getting some dietary advice from a nutritionist. Of course, it’s recommended that you consult with your doctor, but any non-medical activities which help you to feel positive, peaceful and relaxed are truly valuable.
3. Eat natural
Eating well is great for your body and your mind. Cut out processed foods, animal products and sugar as much as possible. Instead, stock up on greens, seeds and grains to help you feel your best. Leafy greens like kale and chard, nuts, seeds, fruit and whole grains will all make sure you’re as healthy as you possibly can be.
4. Get juicy
Fresh juices are a fantastic way to increase the vitamins, antioxidants and minerals you’re consuming. But don’t rush out and buy a trolley full of sugary fruit juices just yet. Juicing your own organic fruit and veg is far, far better for you – and green juices are at the top of the pile. Kris Carr has some fantastic recipes for you to try and, as an inspiring individual living with cancer, her juices are tried and tested.
5. Choose your beauty products carefully
From shower gels to deodorants, there are hundreds of chemicals in the products we use on our bodies every day. Look out for chemical free alternatives, or consider making your own from natural ingredients like Castile soap (made from olive oil) and coconut oil. Here’s a helpful guide to choosing non-chemical products.
6. Choose your cleaning products carefully, too
If you thought chemical-laden cosmetics were bad news, the cleaning products stashed beneath your kitchen sink are a whole world of trouble. Banish the harsh chemicals and make the switch to home made, healthy alternatives. Here are some great natural recipes to try that will help keep your home spotless and chemical free.
7. Stay active
You need your rest, absolutely. But it’s important not to become entirely sedentary. Staying as active as you can should increase your energy, immunity and endurance, helping you in your fight against cancer, especially during recovery from treatment.
8. Get plenty of rest
Keeping moving can be a big, positive step, but you really do need your rest. A solid night’s sleep will help you keep your strength up and your mind positive, especially if you hunker down between the peak sleepy hours of 11pm and 7am. With so much on your mind, it can sometimes be difficult to get the right amount of shut eye. Sleeping in a cool room, cutting out coffee after 12pm and steering clear of television, computer and phone screens for at least an hour before bed time can all help you drift off peacefully.
9. Conquer stress
A cancer diagnosis can be one of the most traumatic experiences you go through, so tackling the stress you feel can be a huge challenge. However, if you can get a handle on your stress levels, you can radically reduce the heavy doses of hormones feeling stressed releases in your body, improving your overall well being and your everyday experience. The trick is to find something that works for you – often finding something physical which takes you out of your mind is beneficial. Whether it’s a pottery class, taking walks or regular massages – whatever helps you to feel calm and at peace will do you the world of good.
10. Work on acceptance
Accepting your diagnosis and your current state of health is not easy. But it can make a huge difference to your outlook. Accepting your illness doesn’t mean you’re not fighting to conquer it. What it does mean is coming to terms with your situation, yourself and how you feel, in a loving way. Instead of looking towards the future and hating every second of the “now”, take time each day to appreciate the good in your daily life, even just the little things.