Supporting Cancer Survivorship and Quality of Life

We have significant challenges.  Let’s recognise those, let’s be resilient, determined and consider how to achieve!

On Thursday 27th July I was privileged to run a short workshop at an event in Blackpool to celebrate World Head and Neck Cancer Day.

With a packed audience of support professionals, patients and carers, I wanted to provide a context of problems and challenges facing people with cancer, their friends, families and carers.  Yet also to focus on achievements and successes.

Here’s what I said:

“I’m Phil and my grandfather died 43 years ago when I was just nine years old.  He died from lung cancer caused by smoking.

Did my grandfather’s death have an impact on my life since then?  I think so!

Whilst I have been fortunate enough that cancer has not impacted on my family or friends since then, I have struggled with many life challenges.

I was married now and am now divorced.  This was a rough ride for my three daughters, as they had to struggle through conflicts.

I struggle with a hearing impairment, I will likely go totally deaf in one ear within a few more years.

I have had significant spells of voluntary work, when I couldn’t get paid work.  I have been unemployed and was a lone parent for a two year spell, both of which presented significant challenges to re-entering employment.


That said my glass is always well over three quarters full, never half empty.

12th August 2013 I will always class as one of my lifetime achievements.  On that day I started my own business, a dream of mine for many, many years.  Despite many hurdles along the way we are resilient, determined and continue to exist today and are on our growth journey to success.  Our efforts have been such as to be able to achieve BIBAs (Be Inspired in Business Awards) finalist status in the socially responsible category in 2016.

I am passionate that communities should be socially inclusive and that barriers and perceived barriers to entry to employment and services are there to be reduced and eliminated.

I subscribe to the policy agenda that encourages people to be active and to work and that by products from that are reduction in incidences of ill health and of course reductions in health treatments and support costs.

So for example being mentally or physically active should promote experiences of positive wellbeing, including leading to improved self-esteem, motivation, improved general and mental health, and reduced psychological distress.

By promoting enhanced levels of community engagement, GuideDotYou encourages people to participate in activities, socialise, volunteer, and enter into sustainable employment or self-employment.  Together we can put the emphasis on prevention is better than cure and improve the quality of life for so many, leading to better health outcomes for individuals across our diverse population.

Which leads us in to building together our “Wall Of Success”.  Starting with this short exercise and building through the evening as we hear from more and more inspirational speakers contributing their wealth of knowledge and experience to support you.

The aim is to identify your successes and achievements – no matter how big or small they may seem to you.  Despite problems and challenges, those successes are there.  Using the post its you are supplied with, let’s build that collective wall.  It will be so powerful, and who knows may inspire some of you to learn from other’s successes and further embark on your own positive journey to recovery and success.”

During the evening the wall built and we had 45 different contributions that helped to build the collective “Wall of Success”

Sharing is Caring!

Truly Inspirational!


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