Spiritual Fighters: Faith And Hope

A positive attitude towards an illness helps your body fight it faster.A positive attitude towards an illness helps your body fight it faster.

According to the WHO statistics cancers is listed among the leading causes of mortality and morbidity worldwide with approximately 14 million new cases and around 8.2 million deaths related to cancer following the year 2012. However, the numbers are improving each year and the survival rates of cancer patients are higher each year.

Still, these alarming statistics are behind hopelessness and fear in people diagnosed with cancer. But it is believed by most of the physicians that in reality, cancer fighters get best results from their treatments if they are determined and hopeful. Hopefulness provides a cancer patient with a framework for bringing to light the perspective and understanding via greater source than oneself. It builds a sense of emotional self-control and helplessness.

Researchers’ point of view:

In a study conducted at the University of Michigan Medical Center, more than 90% cancer patients mentioned that it was their faith that had increased their ability to stay hopeful.

  • It enables them to cope actively with all the hurdles and difficult life situations.
  • It builds a high quality of life.
  • Patients adjust themselves in a better way in receiving chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
  • It provides them the stamina and tenacity to face the anxiety of their illness and the treatment

Another group of studies published in the Southern Medical Journal in 2004 reports that religious morals, activities, and beliefs are associated with:

  • A good immune function
  • Lower mortality (death) rates due to cancer
  • Decreased blood pressure
  • Better cardiac outcomes
  • Improved health behavior i.e. (more exercise, good sleep, less cigarette smoking).

All this increases the lifespan of an individual fighting cancer.

Role Of Spiritual Mentors/Instructors:

The majority of cancer patients get anxious, stressed out, depressed and angry, thinking that “Why God is angry with me? Why am I the victim of this dreaded disease?” For such questions, spiritual counselors relax them with answers like: “It is not a punishment from God for you. It is your test of patience, and He knows you will be strong and fight this until you get better. He will help you through this. You need to have faith in Him and yourself.” It comes as a welcome relief to cancer patients and puts them in peace and serenity that is necessary for the healing process.

Spiritual mentors might not be able to change their thoughts, but they provide them that energy that assists them to fight cancer. It leads them to a state of tranquility by letting them share their feelings. They show them a bigger picture where faith, hope and medicine work together.

Role Of Family And Friends In Building Faith:

A cancer patient’s company has a high role in building confidence and faith to fight cancer with energy. A survey conducted by the researchers at John Hopkins University reported that successful coping with stress at the end stage of cancer was associated with two variables:

  • Caregivers or social contacts of cancer patients
  • Support that cancer patient receives from spiritual/religious faith

Religious teachings help the cancer patient to become a responsible and careful person. It is an important source providing long-term care. It helps to maintain a good quality of life.

Conclusion:

Although cancer challenges a cancer patient’s faith, still many people fundamentally seek their belief to be strengthened due to this experience. Learning new aspects of life restores faith in a better living and humanity. Faith and hope are equally significant in the healing process as other treatments for cancer.

References:

  1. Cancer and faith
  2. Coping with cancer (faith and cancer)
  3. Religion, Spirituality, and Medicine: Research Findings and Implications for Clinical Practice
  4. Supportive care:Rehabilitation

Dr. Adem Gunes

Dr. Adem Gunes has built the world’s largest database of scientifically tested natural substances with proven effects in cancer treatments. In 2009, he was appointed as the Chief Physician of ProLife Clinic in Innsbruck, Austria, and played a key role in the establishment of the research laboratory. He is also the co-founder of the first Austrian hyperthermia center. Now, Dr. Adem works closely with cancer patients from around the world (including Germany, Thailand, Dubai) to recommend them a complementary cancer clinic or to create a personalized care plan for patients to follow at home.

Delegate

Delegate - Breast Cancer Stress ManagementAs a person affected by cancer in one way or another, your life as you have known it has changed. You did not get a vote about the change, but you do get a vote about how you are going to navigate your life. Today’s word is DELEGATE.

Don’t let your life become overwhelming, DELEGATE as much you can to someone else. DELEGATE household chores to your children, partner, or house partners. DELEGATE things that you don’t like doing or don’t want to do. For instance, if you hate ironing, DELEGATE it to another family member or pay someone else to do it for you. Most of the things that require your time and energy can be hired out and DELEGATED to someone else who needs to make a living doing the things that you hate to do. Rather than think about yourself as lazy or unmotivated realize that DELEGATING difficult or an unpleasant chore to others for hire is a way to keep the system moving. Get as much stuff off of your to to-do list as possible because you need all of your energy to recover and let the body return to optimum health.

What is that message in your head when you ask someone else to do something for you? Where did that message come from? If you allowed yourself to be gentle with your need to DELEGATE some of that stuff on your plate what is the worst that could happen? Would it be guilt, or your fear someone else won’t do it right or the way you want it done? Transitioning your attitude to be willing to DELEGATE as a management style may not be a smooth transition, but it can be helpful in lowering your levels of stress and chaos once you learn to DELEGATE.

Chose three things to DELEGATE this week. Look at the things in your life that are irritating you, stealing your energy, or are just too hard for you to do right now. Three may seem like a lot but through this process, you will choose the number one priority to DELEGATE. Reflect over the past few days or weeks about your thoughts. How many times have you wished someone else would do the laundry but you didn’t ask or delegate? You probably didn’t ask or delegate because you minimized the task. Perhaps you said something like, “How hard is it to throw a load of laundry in the machine and transfer it to the dryer? Come on, it is no big deal, just do it.” But then when the dryer finished, you just wanted to crawl into those warm clothes and go to sleep rather than fold them. Your body needs rest. Your cells need to be strong and capable of fighting off those mutant cells that want to build tumors. Give yourself permission to rest.

Thus, back to your list of three. Choose one from the list as a practice DELEGATE task. Create a plan on how you are going to DELEGATE and to whom. Write specific instructions on how you want this task to be done and make arrangements for a finish task time. DELEGATE it and see how it goes. Then move on to the other two items on your list. As you become a pro at DELEGATION, the goal is to have time and energy for the top five things on your list that matter most for your healing; rest, sleep, healthy eating, yoga and time to enjoy your favorite people in your life.

Dr. Robin DilleyDr. Robin B. Dilley, author of In A Moment’s Notice: A Psychologist’s Journey with Breast Cancer is a licensed psychologist in the State of Arizona. Her eclectic practice allows her to cross diagnostic barriers and meet clients in their need assisting them to respond to life in healthy and empowering ways rather than react to life’s circumstances.

Embrace the Gift of Holiday Love During Crisis: 6 “Tried & True” Ways

Embrace The Holidays By: Kathleen O’Keefe Kanavos, International Bestselling Author of Surviving Cancerland: Intuitive Aspects of Healing.

Trouble does not take time off for celebrations or holidays and neither should you. Every day of life is a special gift. Celebrating the holidays is a wonderful way to distract us from our treatments, illness and crisis. When we embrace and celebrate a gift of love, we automatically give back as much as we received. Accepting love is also a gift to the giver.

“But how can I celebrate when I feel so poorly?” you may ask. I asked the same question while I battled three breast cancers over ten years. So the solutions shared here with you are tried and true.

  1. Embrace the gift of love during the holidays as a first step in enjoying life during times of strife. Disaster is temporary. Love is eternal. Focus on the love and joy will happen. It is part of the miracle of life.
  2. Take time to love the simple things in life. Celebration is not measured by how many things you do, how much money you spend, or how lavishly you entertain. It is measured by how much you share the gift of love and how deeply that gift is felt. Celebration comes from accomplishments. Celebration does not come from your mental “to do list.” It comes from your heart’s, “I did it list.”
  3. Start your “I did it list” by writing down your victories in life, no matter how small. Size is a concept and state of mind. Diamonds come in very small packages yet they are a very big commodity. What diamonds do you have to share with yourself that exemplify your life’s accomplishments? Honor them by keeping them with you. When you feel the weight of treatment, illness or life-in- general bearing down upon you, take out your list and re-read it. If you are having an exceptionally bad day, read it to your reflection in a mirror until you believe it. Mirror therapy can be very effective.
  4. Define your limits and know your limitations while in crisis, treatment or recovery. When faced with an emotional or physical decision that is taxing or vexing, ask yourself, “Will life continue to exist if I do not do this?” If the answer is, Yes!” choose to not do it. Remember that the choice is always yours to accept or reject any request or demand. The word “No” does not require an explanation. Just like the word “Because” “No” is its own complete statement. If you feel compelled to soften the blow add, “But thank you so much for asking.” Embracing this concept is a big step in defining your limits and limitations during the holidays that can become a New Year Resolution.
  5. Sit back and let others show their devotion to you during this challenging time in your life. Receiving affection, compliments or gifts is not always easy for many people. You become so accustomed to giving that you overlook the importance of getting. Look at receiving from a different perspective. Allowing others the opportunity to display their love to you may be the best gift you ever gave to them. It can become the memory of a lifetime. Give them the gift of pampering you.
  6. The holidays are filled with miracles. Some are as small as a newborn baby. Some as big as a second chance at life. Watch for miracles during holiday family gatherings, and remember to give thanks for the small things in life.

During a personal crisis it can be difficult to relinquish control of things that were considered “your job.” Allowing yourself to be vulnerable and shift power into the hands of others can be daunting. Trusting in your Higher Power to lead family members can be a big leap of faith, and that may be a good thing. Agree to let others help you with cores or cherished jobs like trimming the tree or cooking the holiday meal. It may be a way of seeing how much you have influenced their life in a positive way and a wonderful opportunity to tweak family traditions so that you have more energy to enjoy the festivities. Think of this change as a temporary respite from past frenzies, no matter how enjoyable they may have seemed at the time.

This holiday season choose to embrace the opportunity to sit back, relax and share the gift of love by allowing loved ones, family and friends to pamper you like you’ve never been pampered before.
You deserve it. They deserve it. Eat it up!

Kathleen O'Keefe-Kanavos Breast Cancer Authority ContributorABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kathleen O’Keefe Kanavos is the International Bestselling author of Surviving Cancerland: Intuitive Aspects of Healing, & 3x Breast Cancer Survivor whose dreams diagnosed cancer. Kat believes dreams diagnose your life. “Did you have a déjà- vu or did your dream come true?” Kat’s interpretations are in American Express Open Forum. She’s a TV & Radio Host for Wicked Housewives On Cape Cod, Coach, Keynote Speaker, “go-to authority” on Beauty, Health, Wealth & Relationships, Panelist/Presenter at IASD (International Association for the Study of Dreams), columnist, & blogs on sites like DreamCloud, Breast Cancer Yoga. Kat taught Special Education and Psychology at USF. http://survivingcancerland.com/

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