Mental Toughness


When my patients would enter the hospital to receive chemotherapy or a bone marrow transplant, I always saw them as having courage and mental toughness. However, I never questioned them as to how they got it.


It’s not easy maintaining a positive mental attitude when going through cancer treatment. I didn’t always have one, that’s for sure. Fear, anxiety, and panic would sometimes spiral my mind into a dark place. Deep breathing, saying prayers, and feeling the support from others helped. And, I would tell myself, “This is what I need to do right now,” (get chemo or a scan or whatever it was) but this is not how my life is going to be forever. It helped when I could look at the big picture instead of my current circumstances. I had to hurdle the obstacles on my path which developed a stronger mental toughness.

“I learned that courage is not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” Nelson Mandela

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