Step 1: Define what the “new normal” is for you.
Survivors tend to look at their lives in a whole new way. At times, survivors may feel alone because of all of the involvement in their doctor appointments and treatment, or they may feel isolated because of the disease. It is up to you to create what your new normal is. This is a precarious time in your life filled with change, but you have a choice in how you want to create your life going forward.
During this stage we will explore how you want to move forward with relationships, with your career and how you want to integrate that back into your life if you have been absent from work. We will also explore how you want to live your life, how you can create healthier eating habits, exercise, meditation, etc., and what if any internal blocks are holding you back from creating the life that you want to live and what your “new normal” can look like.
Step 2: Follow up and self-care.
Following up for routine check-ups and testing is of utmost importance to maintaining your health. Self-care is just as important as is eating a well-balanced diet, exercising and staying hydrated. Self-care will keep you both mentally and physically fit. What can you do for you today that will make you feel good? Women are so used to doing for others that they often forget to love themselves. Go for a walk, go to the gym, go to a movie, go shopping, meditate, curl up on the couch and read a good book, get your hair and nails done. Get someone else help you, delegate things to others. Any action you can do to reduce stress and overdoing it while giving to yourself is what you need to do. Give up control and let others be responsible too. Diary something to do for yourself every day and add something special once a week. Work at establishing goals for yourself.
Step 3: Live in the Now
Living in the present moment is key to survival and keeping worry and anxiety about recurrence at a distance. In order to do this you need to slow things down a bit and focus on what you are doing in present moment, not the future. Mediate and get connected to yourself, to your spirituality. Deal with your emotions daily, feel the feelings. Experience life. We need to stop the chatter and voices inside our head with relaxation techniques. Live moments in each day instead.
Step 4: Survive to thrive
Living in the now will not only help you to survive, it will allow you to thrive in life. With less fear and worry in your life you will be able to focus on what it is that you want in life. Those of us who were “doers” need to learn how to just “be.”
Step 5: Create New Beginnings
What is your passion? What have you wanted to do all of your life? Looking back at your life pre- diagnosis, what do you want to change in your life and what do you want to keep? What serves you and what doesn’t? The time is now. Your time is now. Why wouldn’t you want to begin creating a vision and taking the steps to live into that place? What would that look like?
About the Author: Gina Costa-Goldfarb is a breast cancer survivor and Certified Professional Coach and Energy Leadership Master Practitioner. She is the founder of New Beginnings Coaching Services, LLC. Gina helps women diagnosed with breast cancer cope, step-by-step, with the emotional and physical challenges they experience, so they gain confidence and feel in control of their life again. You can connect with Gina on her website, Facebook, or email email@example.com.