Dec 05, 2014 1:00 AM

Author: Edwin V. Lyons

The holiday season can feel like the most wonderful time of year to some, while it can also feel like a time of loneliness, pressure, and stress to others, especially to those who may be dealing with the effects of cancer and other serious illnesses.

Here are a few tips and resources to help you or a loved one cope with cancer during the holidays.

1. First and foremost, take care of yourself.

Whether that means getting rest, exercising, or eating healthy and balanced meals, make sure you pay attention to what your body is telling you.

2. Surround yourself with supporters.

Sometimes the best medicine is simply being in the company of those you love, those you value, those you count on. If even for short periods at a time during the holiday season, when needed, ask for help from those people that appreciate you.

3. Grant yourself permission to feel and express all of your emotions.

Even though the holidays can be a joyous time, let yourself be true to your emotions. Enjoy the wonder and good times, but also take time to express other emotions as they arise.

4. Learn to say “no.”

Events, gatherings, family and friends are important and enjoyable, but sometimes these can be stressors, leaving you with a feeling of obligation to say “yes”. Saying “no” is okay, and will allow some alone time when needed.  

5. Create a new holiday tradition.

Big or small, creating a new holiday tradition can add excitement to the holiday season for you, your family and friends, giving you something to enjoy this year, and something to look forward to in the years to come.

If you have any questions, need more information, or would like to speak with someone, please feel welcome to contact the Huntsman Cancer Institute Patient and Family Support team at 801-213-5699, or visit their website.

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