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Stronger Than Cancer's Side Effects
September 19, 2017 – Ryan Hamner

Stronger Than Cancer's Side Effects

How a fake Buddha quote changed my life.
PUBLISHED September 19, 2017
Ryan Hamner is a four-time survivor of Hodgkin lymphoma, a musician and a writer. In 2011, he wrote and recorded, "Where Hope Lives" for the American Cancer Society and the song for survivors, "Survivors Survive" used in 2015 for #WorldCancerDay. Currently, he operates his website for those affected by cancer, 2surviveonline.com and drinks a ridiculous amount of coffee per day.
I used to think that all of the memes I saw on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter were just a bunch of junk. You know, those inspirational quotes with someone standing looking out over the ocean or drinking a cup of coffee. Then there was that quote I saw on Instagram one day, “What you think you become.” I think it was just a fake Buddha quote or something—or maybe it was Einstein or wait, was it Kanye West? It actually sounds like Bruce Lee to me. Anyway, it doesn’t matter. That’s the one quote out of the many that stuck in my head—and I was actually drinking a cup of coffee when I saw it.

So, what does this have to do with cancer? What does this quote have to do with me? Well plenty, I think anyway.

Over the years of getting sick, getting better, getting sick again and having a complication here, there, my mind has played tricks on me. In short, if you don’t control your thoughts, they can impact every area of your life. I’ve learned this the hard way. I could be preaching to the choir to many on this whole topic, but when you think certain thoughts, you often times act as if they were true.

For example, like many cancer patients and survivors, I’ve had many side effects of treatment. To ignore these side effects would not be too smart, I’m not saying to ignore them. However, to give them so much power like I’ve sometimes done by saying over and over things like, “I’m so weak in the gym now,” “I can’t remember anything,” “I can’t even do blah blah anymore,” is causing me to focus on negativity. This only perpetuates feelings of being “weak in the gym” and brings about more and more negativity.

Look, I’m not a life coach. I don’t speak on stages with one of those funny little microphones on the side of my face. But I’m telling you, you can give and take power from yourself simply by your thoughts that lay the groundwork for how you act and approach life. So, think about your thoughts before you think them. When you do, you may end up being as incredibly strong, awesome and untouched by cancer as I am.
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