Finding out that you have cancer can be hard. It’s often accompanied by a range of emotions like shock, anxiety, fear, and sadness. In addition to preparing for treatment, you may have multiple worries, like how this will impact your lifestyle, loved ones, and finances. A cancer diagnosis can feel overwhelming, and you may want some help dealing with this health challenge.
Coping With a Cancer Diagnosis
Here are 8 tips to help you process and manage your emotions after a cancer diagnosis.
Express your feelings
Find ways to express your feelings, whether anger, frustration, sorrow, or confusion. You could seek professional help through support groups and counselors or share your emotions with close friends and family you trust. If you’re not ready to speak about your feelings with anyone yet, you could let yourself vent through monologuing or journaling.
Try to maintain a positive mindset
Cancer treatment has come a long way, and survival rates are also on the rise. Place more energy into staying hopeful instead of considering worst-case scenarios. A happy and cooperative state of mind is often critical to treatment success as it will make you more compliant with medical advice.
Don’t blame yourself
Don’t beat yourself up for getting cancer. Blaming yourself for any past actions or behaviors that you believe may have led to cancer is a pointless endeavor and will make you feel helpless. The occurrence of cancer is multifactorial, and it can happen to anyone.
Don’t bottle your emotions
Don’t try to put up a fake front for the sake of friends and family. While you might want to spare their feelings, bottling up your emotions will increase your chances of experiencing a breakdown at an unexpected time. Instead, if you’re having a bad day, let your loved ones know. They’re likely to understand and give you space to process your feelings at your own pace.
Inform friends and family only when you’re ready
Disclosing your cancer diagnosis to friends and family can be challenging. Take your time, and only tell them when you feel ready, as they may not react well initially. Give them time to deal with the shock, and don’t take their negative or confused reactions personally. They probably mean well but may not know how to express themselves appropriately.
Do things that relax you
Find ways to help yourself relax and unwind. This could be through yoga and meditation, relaxation exercises, spending time in nature, or playing with your pets. These activities could help you stabilize your mood and shift focus from worrying about the unknown, which may be demoralizing.
Keep yourself active by stepping out of the house or pursuing hobbies like gardening, photography, and crafts. Keep your mind engaged by reading, watching movies, and interacting with others. Maintaining your physical, mental, and emotional well-being is important for rapid recovery.
Aim to continue living your life
Take charge of your disease, but don’t overburden yourself with responsibility. Do what you can to look after your health, modify your lifestyle, and comply with treatment. Maintain a regular schedule to let yourself feel in control, but don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Try to stay focused on the positive aspects of life as you continue doing your normal daily activities.
How NVSCC Can Help
At the Nevada Surgery & Cancer Care or NVSCC, we aim to make our patients feel cared for and comforted. Whether you need help with cancer testing, treatment, or counseling for cancer risk, we can assist you in understanding your condition and guide you in making future health plans.