Restore Emotional Well-Being Maintaining a Positive and Healthy Outlook
You are a survivor whether or not you accept the concept and self identify as one. You are now on your own, not only to recover from breast cancer treatment, but also to create the kind of life you want for yourself. You will make certain decisions and choices based on that vision, and your attitude about your life, along with exercise and nutrition, will play a key role in your recovery. Your outlook on life and your survivorship will depend on this.
As a breast cancer survivor, maintaining a positive and healthy outlook after treatment is important to your quality of life. Exercise and a positive outlook can make a significant difference in your recovery from breast cancer, response to the disease and fitness as you move forward in your life.
Being in a positive emotional state should be something you strive for on a daily basis, and is something you begin to work on before getting out of bed in the morning. It is a healthy attitude based on a chosen set of thoughts and emotions that are energetic, vital, positive and strong enough to result in some outward action or achievement.
The Mayo Clinic reports that the mental and physical health benefits of positive thinking include: lowered rates of depression; greater immune-system vitality; reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease; and overall better psychological and physical well-being. In addition, it states that positive thinking leads to increased coping abilities, which reduce the harmful physical effects of stress. You can develop positive thinking by practicing positive self-talk and encouraging yourself.
According to Natural Techniques, you can change your mindset to develop a positive and healthy outlook on life by:
- Developing a strong sense of purpose for your life. Almost without fail, happy people feel that they have a specific contribution to make in the lives of others. Don’t just let your life move past you without thinking about where it is going. Take control of your future.
- Developing meaningful relationships. In today’s hectic world, it is a constant challenge to make sure we put people and relationships first. And these relationships reap us tangible rewards. Along with offering some of the most rewarding and fulfilling experiences in our lives, close relationships are also important for the health of every cell in our bodies. Loneliness is one of the easiest emotions to link with suppression of the immune system. Remember, it has been shown that women with breast cancer can extend their lives and live them more fully by fostering strong relationships.
- Finding opportunity in difficult situations. We all face difficulties throughout our lives. Many of us will face tragedy that defies any logic or sense of fairness. We can choose to be defeated by life’s blows or to learn from them, grow as a person, and move on to better things. Seek out others who have suffered and triumphed. In times of difficulty, they can make us see that life doesn’t have to defeat us if we don’t let it.
- Studying for a positive mental attitude. Rather than allowing your mind to be filled with all that is negative in life, search out the positive. Study books and tapes on how to live life to the fullest. Listen to people who make you laugh. Learn from the words of those who have learned from adversity.
- Doing the best you can. Every day, we make deposits or withdrawals from our bank account of self-esteem. When we give our best, we feel good about ourselves. When we compromise and take shortcuts, our self-esteem suffers.
- Enjoying life’s small pleasures. Living in the moment, really being aware of your surroundings, can have value beyond just providing relaxation and enjoyment. It can make you more appreciative of the things you love, yet take for granted, and help you cope better with stress and difficulty in life.
The following resources provide detailed information to help maintain a positive and healthy outlook on life:
The Art of Surviving and Thriving After Breast Cancer
Be Happy, Be Positive – The New ‘Mantra’ Against Breast Cancer
Adopt a Healthy Outlook on Life
How to maintain a happy outlook on life
The Healthy Cell Concept™: Promoting a Healthy Mental Attitude
For more information, go to Resources. You can share your knowledge and learning with other survivors at Survivor Tips or start a discussion in our Partner Forum.