We hear this a lot. “Preparation is the key to success”. Whether it is:
- A student getting ready for final exams.
- A sports team gearing up for a big game.
- Someone who is nervous about making a public speech.
If you want to overcome nerves and anxiety and put yourself in a position to succeed and win, “be prepared”.
Further, there are a lot of situations in life where the odds of something occurring affects whether we take action or not. The greater the likelihood that something we want to occur will happen, the more likely we are to act. The less likely something we do not want to occur will happen, the less likely we are to take action to avoid it. I call it math psychology. With this in mind, let me ask you the following:
- If there was a 1 in 2 chance it would rain today would you carry an umbrella? Maybe. But far more likely than if the chance of rain were 1 in a 100. Right?
- If there was a 1 in 3 chance you would get a flat tire today, would you take your tire to get checked out? Or make sure you had a good spare? Or a paid up AAA membership?
- If there was a 1 in 2 chance you would win a mega millions lottery, so long as you played it for five years, would you play it?
- If there was a 1 in 2 chance you would forget an important birthday, would you write it down or set an email reminder?
- If there was a 1 in 2 chance your child could be a pro athlete, would you encourage and support him in pursuing it?
- If there was a 1 in 3 chance your home would have a flood, would you make sure you had good flood insurance?
- If there was a 1 in 3 chance there was going to be a plane crash, would you fly?
- If there was a 1 in 3 chance eating a certain food would make you throw up, would you eat it?
If you’re a man in the United States, there is a 1 in 2 chance you will get diagnosed with cancer. 1 in 3 if you’re a woman.
- Are prepared for it?
- Are you engaging in activities and habits that will decrease or increase your odds?
- Are you as knowledgeable about cancer and health as you are about: sports, gossip, or “what’s trending?”
- Are you prepared like you might be for the rain, a flat tire, a job promotion, or a date?
If you’re not prepared to live than what are you prepare for?
Being prepared for cancer doesn’t mean turning over your life to it, obsessing about it, or not living for today. Be who you are, but have a plan, and be prepared. At least know how to access resources if and when you need them, and how to assemble the information you would need to make important life decisions.
The emotions, pressure, stress and anxiety that can accompany a cancer diagnosis may not leave a person in the best frame of mind or with the time to think everything through. One decision can be the decision that makes a difference. A little bit of research and time spent in advance to be prepared may give you an edge to either avoid cancer in the first place, or to beat it, or better deal with it.
If you or someone you love or care about gets diagnosed you can read this blog about what to do next. You can also read this blog about using social media to your advantage. This includes many potentially helpful links and twitter usernames.
A few more potentially helpful links I’ve looked at since then include:
Many who do nothing until diagnosed, turn over all power and control to their doctor and or hospital facilities. There are many great doctors but they are not perfect. Further, according to an article posted on NPR.org: in 2010, 180,000 people died from bad hospital care.
I don’t mean to be “Dr. Gloom”, but there are errors you can catch and prevent if you are prepared. There are also choices and directions you may discover that are not presented to you at the initial stage that you might have if you’re prepared.
A battle cry of many, including myself, who have lost a loved one to cancer is, “I wish I knew then what I know now”. We say this because we believe we could have made more of a difference in that person’s life.
I hope you never have to deal with cancer. But the odds say that a third to a half of the people reading this in 2014 will. Being prepared just might be a big help if you do.
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