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"Can Optimism beat Cancer? Strap on your armour!"

by Gary W. Moore (21 January 2020)

Thank you all for your prayers and notes of encouragement. As most of you know, I had major surgery to remove thirty inches of my colon last week and I’m recovering and feeling great.

My 7 days in the hospital were restful and interesting. I kept hearing from doctors, nurses and caregivers that they were surprised by my positive outlook and optimism. I must confess that their surprise, surprised me. I was able to have a few conversations with my nurses about their average patient facing tough surgeries with various outcomes. They kept telling me how different I was than most of their patients and how upbeat and positive I was responding.

Why expect the worse?

There is an old saying that says, “Your attitude, not your aptitude, effects your altitude.” In other words, the optimism you bring to the fight is more powerful than your education or IQ. If you believe you can beat cancer, your chances are improved dramatically. If you believe in a positive outcome, you will fight. If you believe there is no hope, why would you bother? The impact of optimism on the mind and body is powerful.

Of course, there are times that a positive attitude may not overcome a medical reality. A positive attitude alone will not heal you, but healing is enhanced with a positive outlook.

Sound simple? Yes, but it’s not easy.

When we are faced with a life-threatening crisis, our minds go into to hyperdrive, churning out all the things that can go wrong. When we are dealing with cancer or a variety of other frightening events, it’s easier to believe the worst. It takes no effort. Just close your eyes and let the negative demons move out of the depth of your mind and tell you why you are dying. It’s easy. Just let it happen.

Or you can dig in and fight.

Make the decision to fight it out. Research the successful stories on the internet that detail the successes others have enjoyed. Speak only positive outcomes into your universe and be an inspiration to those around you. Tell yourself, “I’m a fighter! I’ll beat this!”

Your positive attitude will not only help you but provide a more positive support system. Giving up has an equally negative impact on those who love you. To see you give up, curl into a ball and await whatever may come, saddens everyone. Be brave. Be strong. Fight for your life.

Albina and Tim Dugan are two of the most remarkable people I know. Over fifteen years ago, Albina was given 5 years to live. She was diagnosed with a rare form of liver cancer and was told there was no hope. Her doctor told her to go home and get her life in order.

Instead, Tim began searching the world via the internet for options and Albina strapped on her armor, mounted her horse and rode into battle. Her 5 years to live has now passed three times and she’s working on twenty years. She still has the cancer. No one totally understands why, but Albina has successfully fought and continues to hold her cancer at bay. How? Partly because of her positive attitude. At the time of her diagnosis, she had four young children at home. She proclaimed she wasn’t going anywhere until they were grown, married and she met her grandchildren. Tim never gave up in his relentless search for medical options and people all over the world were lifting them up in prayer. Never underestimate the power of prayer.

Albina and Tim have been an ongoing source of inspiration for people all over the world and they continue to fight.

I keep telling everyone, “I’ll die of something someday, but not this. I truly believe that cancer is already sorry it chose me. It just picked the wrong guy. I won’t stop fighting until cancer is sent in defeat, squealing away from my body.” I’ll remind everyone of this column every 5 years or so. I’ll be here.

Every person reading this column has, is or will face something in their life that requires a positive attitude and a fight. Never give up. Never give in. Be like Albina. Strap on your armor, mount your horse and ride enthusiastically into the fight ...to win.

Gary W. Moore is a syndicated columnist, speaker and author of three books including the award-winning, critically acclaimed, “Playing with the Enemy.” Follow Gary on Twitter @GaryWMoore721 and at www.garywmoore.com.

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