Be Your Own Advocate

The first of the Seven Principles of Mindfulness in Healing from the book, Healing with the Seven Principles of Mindfulness is to be your own advocate. Here is why.

Be Your Own AdvocateWhat happens when most people hear the words, “You’ve got cancer?” How would you feel if you heard these words? What would you do? What would you say?

If you are like most people, you have one of three responses. Your first response may be to fight with your doctor about his pronouncement. How is this possible? How could this happen to me. You must be mistaken.

Your second response might be to run away and ignore the whole thing. This is highly unusual because you place so much trust in the medical system and your doctor. But, just the same, you may want to take fight.

Another possibility is the one that probably happens most frequently. You just completely freeze. You shut down. You don’t want to listen. You are in with your doctor in body only. Your mind is elsewhere. His or her words are passing right over you.

There is one other possibility that a few people take. They are present. They listen to their doctors, but immediately begin to ask a lot of questions – almost to the point of annoying him or her. They find out which of surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and drugs that their doctor is recommending. They ask about immunotherapy and what advances have occurred with their type of cancer of the past few years. They become their own advocate.

These kinds of people recognize that whatever they think right now, they will need a few days to process the information. They will seek second and third opinions. They will take advantage of the internet and learn as much as possible about their diagnosis. They will investigate alternatives. They will learn what lifestyle changes can support their new phase of life. They will meditate about all of these considerations and ask their family and friends for support.

Over the next couple of months, they will from a team of doctors and holistic practitioners to give them the best odds of a complete recovery. And, when they are ready, they will give back to their communities.

This is what it means to be your own advocate. Won’t you at least consider trying these methods? Or are you going to fight, flight or freeze? The choice is yours! Want more information? [Read more…]


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