Hi! Tracey Hancock here. I’m a blood cancer survivor and a life coach, and I wanted to share with you some of my own tips on supporting your wellbeing.
The past two years have been filled with uncertainty and worry for many of us. But as a cancer patient, COVID-19 isn’t all you’ve had to deal with. Perhaps you’ve just been diagnosed, or maybe you’re well into treatment or further along in your journey.
Wherever you are, if you haven’t already, take a moment, pause, and acknowledge how much you’ve been navigating.
While you’ve hopefully had a lot of support and resources to help, there isn’t a map or guidebook for your own situation. Have you had time to reflect? You might not realise how much you’re carrying mentally and emotionally.
It can be hard work to consistently show up for appointments, treatments, and simply live and work as best as you can – let alone processing the thoughts, worries and fears you’re experiencing.
But, we can work on this.
Stay hydrated, eat well, rest, move if you can, and connect with loved ones. These things all make a difference, and they can easily fall by the wayside when we feel stressed and anxious. Choose 1 or 2 to focus on.
Having trouble with working through your thoughts and feelings, or identifying what your next steps are? Journaling can be a great way to manage this. If it isn’t your thing, talk with someone you trust instead.
What do you enjoy doing (and can do given your current situation)? Make that a priority. It might be phoning a friend, reading, pottering in your garden, having a bath, or listening to music. Do something, whether small or big, that brings you joy each day.
Use breathing techniques when you need to calm down and find peace, or strength. Sit comfortably and gently inhale, then exhale. Focus on the sensation and how your body feels. When your mind wanders, or you get distracted, come back to your breath.
You’re smart and capable – but at times, we all need help! What is stopping you from asking? Remember, if someone you cared about was in your shoes, you’d want to help them, right? It’s your turn to ask. In times of uncertainty, fear and worry can take more of a toll on our wellbeing than we realise.
By using these practical tips, and checking in with yourself each day, you can work through any thoughts or feelings you’re sitting with, take action and better navigate life’s challenges.
Tracey Hancock was diagnosed with Hodgkin Lymphoma in 2015. To help her through the diagnosis, treatment, and recovery stages, she drew on her extensive experience as a life coach.
She’s since spoken at many LBC events, sharing powerful, practical, and well-tested tools and strategies to help others better navigate the challenges cancer brings. traceyhancock.com.