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The Leukemia/Bone Marrow Transplant Program of BC

Your Relationships
With Yourself

How to Take Good Care of Yourself

There are many things you can do to promote good self care during your treatment and recovery. Here are some suggestions.

Take Charge

  1. Simplify and structure your life and environment. Have a care routine. Scheduling keeps everyone on track.
  2. The illness does not always have to take centre stage. Make an active choice to take charge of your life.
  3. Arm yourself with as much information as you can about the disease and treatment. Knowledge is empowering.
  4. Get your financial affairs in order.

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Rest

  1. Get enough sleep (at least 6 hours per night) and be sure to take little breaks during the day, even if just a few minutes to sit down and enjoy a cup of tea.
  2. It comes down to not over functioning. Share the load as much as each person is able.

Communicate

  1. Talking – don’t be afraid to open up to friends and family members, most want to be there for you and many don’t know how start the conversation
  2. Journaling – this is a form of communication as well, and many people find it helpful to write down their thoughts, feelings and ideas.
  3. Share your feelings in a respectful way with your loved one.

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Build a Support Network

  1. Become familiar with the resources in your community, such as volunteer drivers, meal delivery programs, support groups and counsellors. Your Leukemia/BMT social worker can provide you with details and contact information.
  2. Try to develop a support network by making connections and forging relationships with others who are going through similar situations; it is helpful to know that you are not alone.
  3. Avoid isolation.

Know the Signs of Burnout & Depression

  1. Know when your stress is manageable and when you need to seek out more professional help.
  2. Develop an awareness of the physical symptoms related to stress. How does your body react to stress?
  3. Don’t put off seeking help from professionals when you need it.

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Practice Stress Management & Relaxation Techniques

  1. Try techniques such as meditation, relaxation breathing, and guided imagery. Classes and support groups in these techniques are offered through the BC Cancer Agency and the Centre for Integrated Healing. These techniques are good for both patients and caregivers.
  2. Physical exercise is a stress reliever. A ten minute walk can do wonders.
  3. Attend a support group. You will discover that you are not alone in this experience, and you will gain invaluable insights and suggestions from others.

~ Self-care is not a luxury; it is a necessity! ~

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