Q & A with Bernie – August 18, 2014

Question for Bernie:

I have MS and no allopathic medicine has been prescribed for me (to my joy). I keep my eyes and ears open to learn about complementary medicine and different schools of healing. However, whenever I hear of a modality that could help with my recovery, something stops from putting my heart and faith in it.

Mentally/emotionally/spiritually I withdraw and prefer to stay put and use my illness as a shield to protect me from others’ and my own needs and expectations. Prior to my diagnosis I was an over-functioning daughter, wife, and working mother of two.

I’m scared of letting my cape of invisibility down. Where can I find the courage?

Bernie’s Answer:

Accept your mortality and stop wasting your lifetime.  You are the problem, so love yourself and change your thoughts and become the solution. It is very important to get over your hypnotic behavior due to your past

Repeat a positive mantra every few hours, and it is also really critical that you add humor to your healing.  Many studies have shown that laughter gives the immune system a significant boost, so think of things that made you laugh out loud and keep looking for more humor in life.

You don’t need an illness for attention and protection.  You have nothing to lose if you become authentic and work at achieving your potential.


Question for Bernie:

I’ll keep this brief (something I’m not known for, but here we go)…partly because it’s difficult to articulate how appreciative I am of the work you have done over the last decades. I am not living with an illness, but recently I did lose a job I valued very deeply (I’m an actress on TV in New Zealand and my much-loved character died, which added another layer of loss that people don’t understand because “acting isn’t real.”  Try telling my central nervous system that!

I bought Love, Medicine and Miracles when I was toying with the idea of becoming a real doctor (my character was one) before I got the news I would no longer be required on the show; little did I know it would come in so handy a few months later.
Having had a relatively stable middle-class upbringing, I felt guilty for feeling unhappy and depressed in recent years. Reading the chapter on Becoming Exceptional has made me realize that if I alter my perspective slightly, I can see that in some ways that I am a survivor of a kind of Good Girl syndrome and of depression, as well as job loss, and of a weird kind of “death.”

Your work gives me something to visualize and reach for. I’m reading Carol Dweck’s book, Mindset, at the moment too, and many ideas are dove-tailing very nicely. Esther Hicks and Candace Pert are on my list, too.  In other words, I’m inspired to respond to recent changes in my circumstances with the kind of skills and attributes you and Al Siebert write about, and which a friend of mine must call on right now.  He is 34 and is being treated for colon cancer.

I’m not even sure I want to be an actress anymore, and I’m letting my interest in the connection between the mind, the body, and the spirit take me into territory I would never have dreamed of going a decade ago. So thank you, from the bottom of the world. :-)
Yours with best wishes and love!

Bernie’s Answer:

Yes, acting is what we all do and it takes its toll on our bodies if we play a tragedy, but it enhances life and health when we act in a comedy.

Do rehearse and practice becoming the person you want to be.  Soon you will be that person, and unlike the acting you are used to, once you are that person, you will never have to get out of character.

Let go completely of a need to pay attention to the reaction of your “audience” in real life.  Just like the audience in the theater, their reaction is not the issue.  Your approval of your genuine self is the only issue. Help your friend with all your newly discovered knowledge, and keep learning.


Question for Bernie:

I am a 53 year old female recently diagnosed with colon cancer.  The cancer metastasized to the liver.  Surgery was performed and a resection to remove the tumor was done.  However, when my surgeon was going to “wedge” some of the tumor cells out of the liver, there were too many.

I am now going through chemo, with good results.  My CEA after my second treatment dropped from 129 to 14.9.  Sometimes I go through days of agitation and irritation.  I have many side effects from the chemo that are irritating as well.

But the worst part for me is that I am a workaholic, and I love to cook.  I cannot work right now and it’s really getting to me.  I have NO desire to cook, and while I realize there are people far worse off than I am but I cannot shake my irritations.

I am not afraid or scared of dying.  I just want my old life back.  I have a wonderful husband who has taken very good care of me; I do not have children, but have a great support group of family and friends.  But still I just feel gloomy at times.  I also have two great dogs, one of which is younger that I have been trying to work with outside each day to motivate myself.

I think the issue/problem I have is that I do not have any motivation.  I am sad at times and feel frustrated.  Any words or ideas would greatly be welcomed.

Bernie’s Answer:

My first recommendation is to start reading my books for more coaching.  You will learn about letting go of the workaholic behavior for the time you need to heal.  When you feel guilt creeping into your thoughts, dispense with it right away.  Resting is an activity in and of itself, and it is critical for healing, so you ARE doing something.  And what you are doing by allowing your body to heal is sending it the message that you intend to LIVE.  Don’t fight the healing process.

Learn how to live in the moment from your dogs.  Ask WWLD = what would Lassie do?  Lassie and your two dogs know how to enjoy each moment of the day, so copy their optimistic behavior—you will see it if you really look.

Do what you love to do and what makes you happy—your body will respond.  Stress and the overproduction of cortisol by your immune system will drop away.  Stop judging yourself and love your life and body just as it is each day.  Don’t think about your body as “the enemy” just because of your illness.  Put pictures of yourself around the house and love who you see.  If you are inspired to cook, do it.  If you aren’t, don’t feel bad about it—you will either go back to it once you are fully healed, or you might find you want to do other things.

Embrace change when it comes your way.  Resisting large and small changes in our lives keeps us from embracing the beauty of life, and life is all about change.  Our job is to choose to welcome all changes as lessons in our life’s journey—gifts of knowledge that can lead us to true happiness.

Humor is hugely important to good health and definitely to healing, so think about things that made you laugh out loud—or would make you laugh out loud.  Let yourself really enjoy laughing four times every day.

Motivation is not the problem you are having.  If you begin right now to act like the person you want to be, you will soon be that person.



Related posts:

  1. Q & A with Bernie – August 11, 2014
  2. Q & A with Bernie – August 4, 2014
  3. Q & A with Bernie – August 27, 2012
  4. Q & A with Bernie – August 12, 2013
  5. Q & A with Bernie – August 26, 2013
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