How Others Act

ACT Acknowledge Communicate Track

ACT means Acknowledge your emotions, Communicate openly and often, and Track your symptoms and test results. Whether you’re watching and waiting or actively treating, ACT can help you better understand your CLL, work with your doctor, and take an active role in your health.1 Explore the stories of how others have used ACT to help them live with CLL.

    Acknowledge

    Doris' Story

    Like many others, Doris experienced stress and anxiety after learning about her diagnosis. She tried to stay optimistic, but her feelings became too overwhelming to ignore.

    How Doris Acknowledged Stress

    Recognizing her feelings helped Doris realize she needed to support her mental health. She decided to make her daily walks more mindful by bringing her full attention to the activity.  When she walks, she pays attention to how the ground feels beneath her feet and the different sounds she hears as she makes her way through her neighborhood. If a thought pops into her head, she notices it and brings her focus back to the walk.

    Mindful walks help Doris relieve stress and anxiety while giving her a way to refocus her energy on her daily tasks.

    Communicate

    Terry's Story

    When Terry was first diagnosed, he relied on his wife Donna for support, but was afraid to tell the rest of his family about his condition. Eventually Terry realized that he needed to communicate with his family in order to get through his journey.

    How Terry Got Comfortable Communicating

    One of the hardest decisions Terry had to make was what to tell his children and his father. Eight years earlier he had lost his mother to breast cancer, and he was fearful of how his father would react to his diagnosis. Terry eventually realized that it was a relief to let his family be a part of his support system. Without his family, the journey would be a lot harder for him.

    Terry realized that his family is an important part of his support system.

    Track

    Dimitri's Story

    A retired ER doctor, Dimitri knows that test results and symptoms may reveal a lot about a person's health. But sometimes, it’s tough to keep all of that information organized so that you have it when you need it.

    How Dimitri Tracks Changes

    Dimitri keeps track of his symptoms and test results to make sure he's ready for conversations with his doctor. When he experiences symptoms, he writes them down in a journal to help him notice any changes over time. Dimitri shares his symptom journal with his doctor so they can work together to understand what the symptoms may mean and manage anything that needs attention. He also asks his doctor for copies of all his test results and makes a point of asking questions about anything he’s unsure of.

    Tracking his symptoms and test results helps Dimitri spot changes over time and work with his doctor to manage his CLL.

    References
    1. McCorkle R, Ercolano E, et al. Self-management: enabling and empowering patients living with cancer as a chronic illness. CA Cancer J Clin. 2011;61(1):50-62.