Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center
    Massachusetts General Hospital
   
Cancer Resource Room

Learn About Cancer

Find Your Cancer Type


 

Learn About Living
with Cancer

Cancer Topics

 


Contact Us

Locations & Hours

 

 

Learn About Well Being—Spirituality and Self-Care©
Written by Cancer Center Staff

Source: Cancer Resource Room

Wellbeing Common Questions
What's New Books - Links
Support & Education External Websites
    Overviews on this topic
    Connect With Others

Caring for the Mind with the Spirit
To help you get through difficult times and times when things are not clear, draw on whatever it is that gives you strength. Being in touch with whatever most gives you a sense of meaning, purpose, support or strength is spirituality in its broadest and best sense. Spirituality is the key to overall well being. You may not be able to see it or touch it, but you can feel its nurturing power.

Finding Spirituality
Spirituality is often linked with religion. However, you do not need to belong to an organized religion to find your spirituality. Those who do follow a religion with specific beliefs and structures may find their spirituality there. Others may find it through their personal relationship with God or some higher power. There may be some who realize their spirituality by considering these broad questions:

  • What gives me purpose?
  • Where do I find meaning?
  • What gives me the strength to keep going?
  • Was there a moment in my life when I felt peace, joy or contentment?
  • Was there a moment in my life when I felt a sense of something greater than myself?

Everyone has an answer to one or more of these questions. The answer will be different for everyone. It may be your belief in a higher power. It may be a loved one, such as a spouse, partner or child. It may be music or art. It may be an act, such as looking at the night sky.

Regaining Lost Spirituality
Fear, anger, a sense of sadness, and many other powerful emotions are common when you have cancer. They are a human response to a terrible time in your life. However, these emotions tend to block your connection to your spirituality. They can make you lose hope and lose sight of the reasons to keep going.

It is important to recognize and work through the emotions you are feeling. There are many people who will listen — family members, doctors, nurses, chaplains, priests, rabbis and social workers, to name a few.

When spirituality is lost, there is a feeling of being disconnected with the things that are important to you. When you reconnect with your spirituality, you regain feelings of hope, strength, purpose and well being.

What's New
To Search Pub Med, please see below.
Consumer and selected health professional journals

Support & Education Programs

We know that being diagnosed with cancer can be stressful for you and your family. We offer a variety of cancer support services to help patients and families gain the support and information they will need to meet the challenges ahead.

To find the next support group on "Spiritual Well Being" along with other programs, please go to this month's offerings in the HOPES calendar.

Services at Massachusetts General Hospital