How to maintain a positive attitude with cancer

Published: 18 Feb 2020

It’s easier to adopt a positive attitude when life is good and problems are few, but when you are told you have cancer, it’s not all that easy.  Everyone reacts differently to a cancer diagnosis and treatment.  Many people find themselves on a downward trajectory – their thoughts filled with anxiety, stress, fear and depression.  It can be hard to see a way out – but it's important to try.  Keeping your mind strong is just as important as looking after your body when it comes to fighting cancer.

Training your mind requires time and effort and at times that may seem like an impossible task – but there are techniques you can incorporate into your daily life that can help you to calm your thoughts and generate a more ‘positive mental attitude’ as a counterbalance to those darker moments. 

Keeping an open mind is important.  Don’t write things off as ‘mumbo jumbo or hippy’ - positive affirmations, brain training, cognitive reframing/therapy, sleep schools, audio hypnotherapy and spiritual meditation and exercise, such as yoga have become far more mainstream in the last few – and that’s because they have been proven to work.

Positive steps towards a positive mind

First off, all the experts say that you don't always have to be positive. Occasionally allowing yourself time to off-load, vent your anger, frustration, and fears with a good friend is just as important as finding ways to stay positive.  You need both.

We have gathered together a few tips and hope this article will help you see the glass as half full - not half empty.   We’re not saying you’re going to suddenly turn into the sunniest person on the planet – but there are things you can do and situations to avoid that will make you feel better.


These are all things you can do for yourself – but it's important if you feel you can't cope on your own, go and see your medical team or doctor for help.  They may suggest other techniques, arrange for you to see a therapist or prescribe medication.  Don't struggle on your own – make sure you ask for the help you need.

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