Imagine this scenario: Mary and Janet each discovered she had breast cancer at the same stage of development and began seeing the same physician on the same day. Each had the same treatments for the same period of time. Mary did not recover. Janet is not only alive, she is thriving.
What made the difference? Their belief system. Mary believed everything the doctor said about the treatment, its side effects and her slim chances of survival. She got sick with the treatment, became extremely tired, lost her hair and died right on schedule. Janet was determined to beat it no matter what it took. She believed she was more powerful than the cancer and she proved it.
Along with her prescribed treatments and a change in her eating habits, she sought out a hypnotherapist who works with patients undergoing cancer treatment. Why a hypnotherapist? To answer that question, let’s explore the program Janet and the hypnotherapist developed together.
Because Janet saw the hypnotherapist the week before the chemotherapy began, the first thing they did was help Janet’s mind understand that there was no need for her to lose her hair or experience any other side effects. They reinforced this in the succeeding sessions.
After a number of chemotherapy sessions with minimal or no side effects, they began to explore possible causes of the cancer and do creative visualizations of Janet’s perfect health. In other words, they gave her mind the goal of perfect health.
Does this sound impossible, farfetched or woo woo? Even if it sounds like that to you, know that the mind is a very powerful instrument and that our thoughts create our reality.
Have you heard the statement, “You are what you think about all day long?” Or “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he”? Ponder this: If biofeedback helps you regulate your heart beat, your blood pressure and your response to stress by using the power of your mind, isn’t it logical that you can control your response to therapy, encourage your immune system to fight disease and perhaps eliminate it altogether?
I worked with a woman shortly after her surgery for breast cancer and after her first session of chemotherapy. She had experienced hypnosis for childbirth and thought it might benefit her in this health crisis. Unfortunately she had already lost her hair, but we were able to keep her from being nauseated or experiencing the debilitating exhaustion the doctor told her she would experience. Among other things, we did visualizations of her sitting in the exam room and hearing the doctor and nurse outside the door discussing how well she was doing and wondering what made her different from the other patients who demonstrated all the side effects of the chemotherapy. She called one day, excited to tell me this had happened just the way we visualized it. This was almost ten years ago and she is still thriving.
While this may seem like a simplistic approach, it is a very dynamic one because the power of your mind knows no limits. There is a saying, “If you want to change your life, change your thinking.” We believe this to be true and see evidence of it on a daily basis.