Acknowledge your choices

Your diagnosis may not be good, yet you’re not without choices! From the article Misdiagnosis;

Being given a terminal diagnosis like this reveals the assumption that time is plentiful and that we have an abundance of choices ahead of us. All the potential that life holds is suddenly reduced and what’s left is compressed into a short time frame. However, in that ‘deal with it’ state-of-mind, if this disease was mine to bare and if this was to be the final chapter, then I would choose how that final chapter would be written by working with the choices I had remaining. And so leaving the hospital came the first choice; I chose to drive us home, a small act of defiance maybe, but as devastating as this news was, I would protect any normality that was useful to protect.

This is a mental agility technique; refocusing your mind away from what you cannot control (powerless) and on to what you can control (powerful) i.e. your choices. So in this moment you cannot control the fact that you have an illness, and yet, depending on your particular situation, you can still make a whole range of choices:

  • What you choose to eat
  • Who you choose to seek help from
  • Research you choose to undertake
  • How you choose to think
  • What you choose to do on a daily basis to increase your energy
  • How you choose to engage with others about your condition
  • Questions you choose to ask your doctor
  • How you choose to prioritise what’s important
  • How loud you’re choosing to play your music

I could keep going! The point is simple, and it’s something I train leaders and teams to do when they’re facing setbacks; focus on what you can control by focusing on what choices you have available to you. What can you choose to do now, that’s going to be useful to you and positive?

About these strategies

Welcome. These strategies are for people who’ve been diagnosed with a terminal or life threatening illness. If that’s you, I’m sharing them because I know something about what you’re going through, they helped me and so maybe they can help you too.

Click here to learn more about the purpose and background of these posts.