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Friday, March 30, 2012

Today's Guest Blog by Melanie Bowen;"Journaling to a Happier Life"

Today's guest blog post encompasses the idea and importance of inspiration and self-motivation. Every illness has its limitations, goals and positivity go hand in hand on an individual’s path to healing and quality of life. This article is tailored  to encompass those ideas.

For more information - see the: Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance blog [

To Health and Making a Difference!

Journaling to a Happier Life

As children, many people kept a journal; mostly girls. Girls are notorious for keeping a journal so they can write down their crush’s name, doodle their name with their crush’s last name and imagine their future together. It’s a great way for young girls to let out their emotions when the cool girl is mean to her at school or when her crush looks her way and makes eye contact during a math lesson. Over time, many young girls use their journals and diaries less frequently, until they eventually become adults and forget they ever kept one. Then one day, a woman may find the journal she kept as a young girl and find herself smiling as she re-reads her youthful words and relives her youthful emotions. She will instantly feel lighter, better and wish for a time when life was less complicated and less emotional.

As adults, few people actually keep a journal. However, much like it helped when people were younger, keeping a journal as an adult is a great way for men and women to relieve their emotions during times of extreme happiness and extreme sadness, such as when they are diagnosed with a form of cancer called mesothelioma. Their prognosis depends on their acceptance of treatment and their ability to handle this difficult and stressful situation. Doctors are firm believers that keeping a journal throughout the process of a cancer diagnosis is a great way for patients to relieve their stress and let go of their emotions in a healthy, proactive manner. Each day, cancer patients should write down a few words about their day. They can simply write that it was a good day or that it was a bad day and they can write down how they felt about that. They don’t need to write pages and pages of their feelings. Even just writing down that the day was really good because they bought a new pair of shoes will help them to feel good about themselves. Additionally, writing that it was a bad day will help them to let go of what was angering them and move on from there.

Something else that is helpful to cancer patients is to make a list of their goals and write it in their journal. This list of goals that they wish to accomplish in their life will serve as a constant, tangible reminder that they have things to do when they are diagnosed as cancer free after their treatments. This list is a great way for them to motivate themselves on particularly rough days; it serves as a reminder that maybe this day wasn’t a good one, but that life is going to be full of great days. Seeing their goals on paper will help them to picture themselves accomplishing them and will provide them with the motivation they need to do so. There is life after cancer; and it is a good one. Cancer will teach people to embrace the good, let go of the bad and to live.

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