Building Your Muscles of Choice and Change After Cancer

“After it sunk in that I couldn’t take time for granted, I felt compelled to make spending time with my children my top priority. It was challenging, I kept reminding myself that if I could do cancer, I surely could do this.”– Angelina Provst, age 43, 4-year lung cancer survivor

Change, by definition, requires doing things differently. To have more of what matters most, YOU MUST want it badly enough to step out of your comfort zone and take a new action instead of an old one.

 The first step into the gym, ice cream skipped before bed, or salad ordered instead of a burger is the absolute hardest. As much as we wish that we could lose weight and keep it off without exercising or changing our diet, we won’t.

Changing how you do things is like strengthening a muscle. It can take weeks to finally set foot in the gym. The first time you lift the weights, muscles weak, your first repetitions are hesitant and uncertain before you get the feel of it. Next time you feel a groove. Soon, the workout seems easier so you add more weight. Your confidence grows. And then one day see muscle where there was none when you do the muscle-man arm flex. You feel inspired to keep going.

Of course, you won’t go from your first workout to muscle-man arms overnight. Life will get in the way.  A rush assignment at work and sick kids will intrude on your routine. One morning you will wake up and decide “I can’t do this right now.” Like we all do, you’ll get stuck, sometimes for weeks, months or more. THIS IS A NORMAL PART OF THE CHANGE PROCESS.

 This process of transition comes in uneven spurts: three steps forward, one step back, with a frustrating stuck place, or plateau, where nothing seems to happen. Know that healing is happening in that stuck place. You are processing the growth you have made, and preparing for your next steps. Remember to show yourself compassion when things slow down or aren’t progressing as fast as you’d like. Instead of feeling wrong, celebrate your progress. You’ll reduce stress, gain confidence, and feel more control over your future as you begin to focus your attention on the choices you’ve made.

When you heard “You have cancer,” did you believe you could do what you have now done? By no choice of your own, you’ve faced the thing you thought you couldn’t do. Fighting cancer has created a new muscle, the If I Can Do Cancer I Can Do Anything muscle. Flex this muscle when your normal resistance to change appears.

 Sign up HERE for my FREE Three Easy Steps That Build Your Muscles of Choice and Change Telecall on Tuesday May 15, 2012 8-9 pm EST / 7 CST / 5 PST. Can’t make the call? Sign up and get the audio after the call.

Learn more about building the muscle of choice and change in my What’s Next After Treatment Ends? LifeBook. Look Inside HERE.

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