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Coping with Life's Curveballs

My tenth anniversary of being breast cancer-free is coming on October 29. I will be publishing a series of wellness posts next week leading up to my celebration!

Life isn’t always a bed of roses, and most of us accept that we have to take the rough with the smooth sometimes when it comes to our life’s journey. Learning how to deal with challenging situations is all part of maturing, and learning how to become emotionally resilient is a tool that serves us well through all kinds of situations. Sometimes, however, despite our best intentions, life brings us low. A single highly unfortunate occurrence like serious illness, being involved in an accident, the death of a loved one or losing your job - or sometimes just a build-up of misfortunes - can accelerate us down the wrong path. Life events such as these can really knock us off course, and sometimes we don’t deal well with them - we find ourselves falling into depression, spiraling off the rails. When it's all gone very wrong, admitting our own role in things can be the hardest thing to process. So when life knocks you down completely, how on earth do you make things right again?

Acknowledge Your Pain

A lot of the missteps which are made come around because we can't bear to admit that we’ve been hurt. We try to put a brave face on our suffering and pretend that things can carry on as usual. The trouble is, the pressure usually finds another way to emerge in the end. And this is where we can really come unstuck, and let our bad luck develop into bad habits such as addiction, which have the potential to massively damage our lives and those of our loved ones. Understanding and processing complex emotions such as grief are key - it doesn’t make us weak and in fact, it's definitely a strength. Depending on how you feel, seeking out a support group, speaking to a trusted friend or booking in for some therapy sessions can be transformative.

Seek The Right Help

Once you’ve allowed yourself to admit that you’re hurting, the next step is to ask for help. This can mean speaking to friends and family to ask for their support in many different ways, or sometimes it can be a case of seeking professional guidance - accessing legal support, seeking debt relief, finding a counselor or even checking into a women's addiction treatment center. It's by no means done, but it is the first step on your journey to truly recovering and being able to live a meaningful life again.

Create Healthy Habits

You’re entering a period of recovery, and that will take significant mental resources that can cross over into the physical - we’ve all experienced feeling physically exhausted when under huge amounts of stress.Support yourself in the best way by making sure that you stick to healthy habits to support this challenging time - try to avoid alcohol, which acts as a depressant to the nervous system, limit the amount of processed food in your diet and start taking a great multivitamin supplement with probiotics. Focus on good sleep hygiene, banning electronics from the bedroom. And find ways to keep calm, from downloading a mindfulness app to using an aromatherapy diffuser in the home. Most of all, be kind to yourself - you can do this, one step at a time.

Feel free to contact me for more information on breast cancer. I serve as a mentor on a large Facebook group and can help you with resources like the ones above.

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