Stress Reduction for Cancer Patients

deep_breath image credit: Good Search

Cancer. A positive attitude will help, but don’t put an added weight on your shoulders by expecting always be happy, chipper and having the energy, or body of Wonder Woman. It’ll just add to the stress of it all.

Knowing stress-reducing activities can help. Find activities you enjoy. I requested people to pick up comedy and travel DVDs from the library that I could watch while on the couch. I also listened to CDs of music and books, and downloads of hypnosis for pain reduction, to which I’d often drift off to sleep. I’d also drift off during meditation, or prayer.

If you don’t know how to meditate, but think it may help you, don’t make a big deal about it. Try breathing deep, slow breaths when you’re lying down, trying to fall asleep. For me, It would help to say a positive affirmation or short prayer—one word with each inhale. It means a short phrase will take a long time, and you may forget the next word, or get tired enough from the deep breathing that you’ll fall asleep during the process. If you choose to do short affirmations, it may go something like this:

Lower your shoulders. Even when we’re lying down, we have them raised, which is a state of stress, not relaxation. Deeply inhale in as you mentally say, “I.” When you fully inhale, there’ll be a moment where you pause into the nothingness—neither inhaling or exhaling, without holding your breath. Your body will know when to begin the exhale. After completely exhaling, there’ll be another moment where you pause into the nothingness—neither inhaling or exhaling, and not forcing your breath out. Your body will know when to inhale, and as you inhale, mentally say, “Am.” On your next inhale, you might mentally say, “Health” or “Peace” or “Comfort”—Whatever comes to you. If “Watermelon” comes to you, allow it, and continue with your breathing. It’s about release, not control or judgement. You can begin with “I” on the next inhale.

When I used a prayer, I almost always fell asleep around the tenth word, which was what I used on purpose to help me fall asleep—and I believe falling asleep to a peaceful mind is setting the stage for healing during sleep. I also believe some of us sleep to heal. Anytime I’ve gotten sick, if I could get sleep, I recovered pretty quickly. I figure my healing Guides get me out-of-the-way so they can do the healing.



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