Living with cancer blog

Connect with spiritual side on cancer journey

By Sheryl M. Ness, R.N. March 3, 2012

Along with the changes in your physical well-being, living with a diagnosis of cancer can cause changes in your spiritual well-being.

You might be thinking "why me?" You might have feelings of anger and betrayal that cause you to question your spiritual beliefs. These emotions are quite normal.

A major illness such as cancer may leave you feeling vulnerable and forever changed. At times, the changes experienced are positive, with a shift toward a new sense of joy in life, forgiveness and gratitude. 

Everyone defines spirituality in a personal way. For many, it means a connection to a religion — including important beliefs, traditions, values and practices. At times, spirituality is a connection to nature, inner peace, or a sense of hope or connection to a higher power. Our spirituality has a strong connection to our emotional and physical life.

As you reflect on your own spirituality, consider the things that are important and meaningful to you.

A few ways to reconnect with your spiritual side may be...

  • Quiet reflection in nature — take in the beauty around you, breathe and reflect on your inner peace.
  • Prayer or meditation — reflect on your worries and concerns and try to let them go through this process.
  • Keep a journal of your thoughts — write about any difficult emotions you may be experiencing as well as your joy and hope.
  • Look for uplifting and positive experiences with others — connect with a spiritual leader or counselor.

I'd love to hear reflections of how you've connected with your spiritual side throughout the journey.


Sheryl M. Ness, R.N.

March 03, 2012