Tag Archives: time managing tips

Time Managing Tips When You’re Going Through Breast Cancer

time managing tipsTime Managing Tips When You’re Going Through Breast Cancer

One of the things that people who are going through breast cancer really have problems with is time management.

Take a normally busy life and turn it upside down with trips to the doctor, trips to the treatment center for chemotherapy or radiotherapy, preparing healthy food and/or juicing, trips to the health food store, working and those down days when you feel like you can’t manage ANY of it, and you have a potential recipe for disaster and melt-down.

Here are some time managing tips to help you through these incredibly busy days.

Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help – If you need help, you must ask for it.  No one is necessarily going to understand what you’re going through and automatically be there for you.

Whether it’s a friend or a neighbor, a spouse or your children, a sibling or a parent, don’t be afraid to ask for help.  If ever there was a time in your life when you should feel okay about asking for help, mounting a battle against cancer should be IT.

Yet, amazingly, plenty of people have problems with this.  It’s not about being a control freak, it’s more about having a hard time admitting help is needed.  Some are simply just accustomed to doing things all on their own.  Right now, though, please just admit there are times when you will need help and don’t be afraid to ask for it.  No one is going to think bad things about you – in fact, they’ll probably be relieved to know that there’s a way they can help you.

Organize For The Coming Day – It really helps to make a plan for the next day the evening before. Write down the 3 most important things you need to accomplish the next day. Put a big star next to the most important one.  Once your day begins, start on that important task and see it through to the end.

Chop & Prepare Vegetables Ahead of Time –  If you’re juicing, it can be very time consuming (but oh, so worth doing!).  See my article on the Benefits of Juicing.  Get someone else (your kids, your spouse, but someone reliable) to either do the vegetable washing, peeling and preparation or to help you do it) and prepare enough for the coming week.  Put them all in those gallon sized zipper bags and store them in the refrigerator.  You can also use them for salads, steaming, however you like to eat vegetables.

Limit Your Time With Energy Suckers –  I know it’s tempting to check and see who said what on Facebook, but at least 30 minutes of precious time can be wasted that way every single day.  Sure, check and see what your peeps are doing, but LIMIT YOUR TIME THERE.  The computer can steal a lot of energy from you and it’s time you could be spending taking a revitalizing walk or doing some meditation or yoga.

If you notice that certain people are sucking your energy (like that neighbor who just wants to gossip about everyone on the block), make your excuses and politely get away from them.

Television is also another energy sucker – be very aware of how much time is spent here (especially with the evening news).  Give yourself a TV-free day once a week and see how the silence resonates with you.

Be very aware of what steals your energy while going through breast cancer treatment because you need as much energy as you can muster to fight this battle.

Consolidate Your Errands – Make a vow to not leave the house for just one little thing.  Wait until you have several things you need to do – like put fuel in the car, or buy the week’s fruit and vegetables, go to the office supply store, going to the post office.  Or better yet, ask someone to do that for you and give yourself time to meditate or do your juicing or yoga… you get the picture.

Learn To Say No – If you say “yes” to every request that’s made on your time, you will be exhausted.  Get super protective about your time, and say “no” to everything but the essential requests or the things that are important to YOU to do.

Outsource If You Can – This is a great time to hire a house cleaner if you can afford it.  If you can’t, please don’t try to handle all of the house cleaning on your own.  Delegate certain tasks that require a lot of your energy – like vacuuming or gardening – to whoever else you can.

Answer Email While Waiting For Doctor/Therapy Visits – If you have a laptop or smart phone, learn how to answer your email while you’re waiting for your turn with the doctor, or while getting your chemotherapy infusions, etc.  This would normally be wasted time, and it also helps keep anxiety levels down if you’re focused on sending somebody else some love!

Start a Blog For Friends, Relatives – I know quite a few who have done this to keep far-away loved ones in the loop about how they’re feeling, how their treatments are progressing, etc.  You won’t need to spend hours at it, just update it whenever you feel you need to, make sure your loved ones have the web address, and that way no one has to spend inordinate amounts of time on the phone updating everyone.  Writing a blog can be quite cathartic too!

Got any more great tips that helped you through this?  Feel free to add it to the comments section below.

 If you’d like to stay connected, sign up for my free e-newsletters on the right, or “like” me on Facebook (MarnieClark.com) and I’ll do my utmost to keep you informed and empowered on your healing journey… and beyond.

Healing Your Body Can Be a Full-Time Job: 6 Tips to Ease You Into It

Healing Your Body Can Be a Full-Time Job
Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net & Ambro

Healing your body when you are trying to overcome any major illness can be a full-time job in itself and one you never asked for.  Juicing, meditation, a doctor’s visit, yoga, a handful of supplements, family duties, cooking, and possibly even squeezing in a few hours of work can lead to a major case of overwhelm.

What To Do With A Case Of “The Overwhelms”

How on earth is one supposed to manage it all without completely losing it or making yourself sicker than you already are?  One option is to ignore the requisite self-care and go on with life as usual.  This may work for some, but usually not for very long.  Another option is to try to do it all at once, but there’s more than a good chance of getting overwhelmed from all of your healing tasks along with your family and career obligations.

When I was healing up from surgery for breast cancer, I was extremely fortunate that I had a good network of friends who helped me a little with cooking and cleaning so that my husband could go out and work and keep the household afloat.  Once I was healed, however, and everyone went back to their normal lives I did go through a case of overwhelming “HOW DO I DO ALL OF THIS?”.   I did eventually find a way between overwhelm and completely ignoring my illness.  I found a way that honors the healing process without having it consume or define your life. Here are some of those lessons.

1. Begin slowly. While you might be tempted to try all of the healing methods you are interested in at once, I don’t advise that.  For one thing, you won’t know which one is working the best!  Instead, start with the thing that you know in your heart will help you the most.  Build up to a few more things.  Start with juicing or meditation and see how you do with them.  Then you can add yoga or Reiki or some form of bodywork later on.  Baby steps for now.

2.  Know that self-care is a project.  It might not be where you want to be in your life at this moment, but put it on your list of things to do.  Not just doctor’s appointments but everything – juicing, essential oils, yoga, reading – everything you consider important for your healing process.  Make sure your healing plan is at the top of your list, because really – what’s more important right now?  Self-care and self-love must be front and center of everything you do.  If, in the past, you have taken care of everyone else first let your illness mark the end of that notion.  You must come first. Now I’m not saying that your work and your children aren’t important.  But if you are sick or too tired, you won’t be much help to them.  There’s a reason they tell you to put your oxygen mask on first!

3.  Plan ahead and don’t be afraid to ask for help.  Now that your healing tasks are on your to-do list, feel great about that!  But don’t be surprised if you still feel overwhelmed.  Now you need to break down the tasks, plan them out and ask for help when you need it.   For instance, if you want to make a green juice every morning but there isn’t time for that, on a Sunday afternoon you and your family could clean and cut and prepare all of the produce for the week.  Put enough for a day in each of 7 separate bags.  Each morning, grab a bag, juice the contents and get yourself out the door.

4.  You can make healing fun.  I was living in a hot climate when I went through breast cancer. The thought of wearing a wig was abhorrent so I bought some beautiful scarves and learned to make beautiful dangly earrings and that was my fun look.  You could try a Thai massage.  Maybe even practice yoga in the buff.  Instead of going to the gym, stay at home and do some Bollywood dancing in your underwear.  Be creative!

5.  Make healing sacred.  When you’re doing something you aren’t crazy about doing (like sitting through a session of chemotherapy or radiation or yet another scan…) make those moments sacred.  Take a deep breath.  Burn a candle or put on a relaxing sacred CD.  As you’re going through those treatments, imagine it to be a golden light moving through your body and going directly to the source of your illness and completely eradicating it.  Not only does this take the dread out of these tasks, you also incorporate the power of guided imagery, which can boost the effects of the treatment.

6.  Be nice to yourself.  Be aware that on any given week or day, you might not have time to do something you’d intended to do.  You might be too tired to take that walk.  You might completely forget that afternoon’s vitamins.  No worries!  Don’t beat yourself up about it.  In fact, expect it to happen, because it will.  Don’t worry about it.  Just do it the next day.  I will, however, offer a word of caution.  It is really important to create boundaries around the things you consider to be the most important.  Those are the ones that will set your healing back big time if you can’t do them.  Do your best to make sure the important things happen and then don’t worry over the other ones.

I found these 6 things helped me so much and in fact I still do many of the things I considered to be the most healing.   I have to thank the website of crazysexylife.com for the inspiration of writing this article and for reminding me of the things I did that helped me so much.  I hope they help you too.  May your healing journey be amazing.

 I send my love to everyone taking this journey right now. If you would like my help with getting through breast cancer in an inspiring and ultra-healthy way, please sign up for my free e-newsletters on the right, or “like” me on Facebook (MarnieClark.com) and I’ll do my utmost to keep you informed and empowered on your healing journey… and beyond.