Principle 3, I call it studied indifference. What does that mean? It means that you know every single solitary thing about what is going to happen to you during every single course of treatment. It might be an operation, it might be a chemo session, it might be an MRI, bone marrow draw, take your pick. What you need to do and what studied indifference is, is you actively asking different questions about every single detail about what is going to be done to you.
Let’s say you’re having a bone marrow draw. You can ask when’s it going to happen, who is going to do it, what’s it going to feel like, are there any special conditions like I can’t eat and then also what bad can happen? There are complications, you could get an infection, you could get complications from the medicine we give you to make you less stressed when we actually do the procedure.
So studied indifference… studied. You do your part in understanding every single component of what is being done to you during your treatment. Indifference is if you do this right, you studied every possible thing that could happen to you, good and bad for every treatment and if there’s bad things that could happen, side effects, complications, then you’ve already developed a plan for how you’re going to deal with it in your head. Once you’ve done your studying you can become indifferent to the procedures as they happen. You’re not going to be completely indifferent, but that is a standard that if you studied everything and internalized everything, you can get to that level of calm when the procedures, when the chemo, when the operation, when the bone marrow draw happens, because you’ve done all the work ahead of time.
Studied indifference is key and the study part is really important. It’s a skill that you need to develop quickly and just be inquisitive, ask questions and you’ll get the answers you need.
For more on Principle 3 and the other 7 principles, grab a copy of my book, How To Be A Cancer Patient, on Amazon now!