Acupressure: Three Points to Relax, Heal & Flow

Join us virtually on Friday, April 30th at 10:00 am to learn three acupressure points to calm your mind, promote wellness, and counteract effects of overwork and aging.
Call 406-582-1600 or click HERE to register.

Acupressure has been used for thousands of years in China, and is an Asian bodywork therapy rooted in traditional Chinese medicine. By applying pressure to specific points, acupressure promotes relaxation and wellness, reduces muscle tension, improves circulation, and releases endorphins (our body’s natural pain relievers). Traditional Chinese medical theory describes acupressure points that lie along channels, or meridians in your body. These energy meridians are the same ones targeted with acupuncture. It is believed that these 12 major channels have flows of vital energy, connecting specific organs or networks of organs, which organize a system of communication throughout your body. The meridians begin at your fingertips, connect to your brain, and then connect to an organ associated with a specific meridian.

The goal of acupressure and other types of Asian body work is to restore health and balance within your body’s channels of energy. These opposing forces are commonly known as Yin (negative energy) and Yang (positive energy). In general, acupressure is very safe. Talk with your doctor before trying a therapy that involves using joints and muscles. You may need several sessions to yield the best results.


Sources: Wheeler, T. 2019, October 16. Acupressure Points and Massage Treatment. WebMD.

Take Charge: Nutrition on April 1st!

Join us, Thursday, April 1st, from 12-1pm. Please call 582-1600 or click HERE to register.

The Take Charge series is featuring a virtual learning class on nutrition and how to use food to improve your health. Dr. Noelle Butler will be leading the class to help assist you with reclaiming your wellness.

Adequate dietary intake can improve the nutritional status and overall wellbeing of almost all cancer survivors. Treatments like radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and surgery can change nutritional needs. It’s also common that intake, digestion, absorption, and utilization of food will be impacted. Treatment may pose challenges on these body functions because of side-effects, but, there are things you can try that might make fulfilling nutritional needs a little bit easier. These include small, frequent meals and snacks, foods that are easy to chew, swallow, digest and absorb, and foods that are appealing to you.

As important as nutrition is during treatment, it is just as important after treatment. Survivors are encouraged to consume enough calories to maintain body weight and optimal nutrient stores. It’s important to note that weight fluctuations are normal. Treatment and recovery can put extra demand on your body. Overall, this may greatly increase nutritional and caloric needs. Ask your nutritionally qualified health care provider about making a plan that is individualized to meet your specific needs.


Frankly Speaking About Cancer: Making Treatment Decisions

Frankly Speaking About Cancer: Making Treatment Decisions | Cancer Support Community Montana

Are you or a loved one wondering about what topics to consider when weighing treatment options and how to prepare for appointments? Join board certified Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner at Bozeman Health Cancer Center, Clarissa Drill, as she shares ways to partner with your healthcare team in making treatment decisions.

Anxiety in the Cancer Experience

By: Grace Van Cleef

My mom has always had a stereotypical “Type A” personality: hardworking, meticulous, and high achieving. Of course, this has been a benefit throughout her life. She holds two and a half jobs, but she loves her work and she tackles each day with spirit. As the choir director/organist of a local church and conductor of a local community choir, she has never had a dull moment.

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Tips for Managing Cost of Care

Cancer is a very expensive illness. For people without insurance, the direct medical costs can be a serious obstacle to obtaining care. But even for those with insurance, most are unprepared for the out-of-pocket expense of their cancer treatment. Click the link below to learn about some of your options regarding cost of care.

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5 Facts About Mindfulness for Better Mental Health

Mindfulness is somewhat of a trendy topic these days, but underneath all the publicity it can have profound benefits. Many of us will suffer from anxiety and depression at some point in our lives. Usually they serve as natural reactions to challenges we have to face or problems we need to overcome. However, at points it can feel as though our own minds have turned against us. We can be plunged into our own personal idea of hell as we force ourselves to overthink, dwell on the past, or worry about the future. Mindfulness is a great way to come back to the present and free ourselves from our negative thought patterns.

So What is Mindfulness?

In theory, mindfulness is a pretty straightforward concept. It suggests the mind is fully involved in what is happening, the space around you and anything you might be doing. This would be easy if it weren’t for our mind’s tendency to habitually change direction every few seconds. As our mind takes flight, we lose touch with our surroundings, and soon enough we are engaged in obsessive thought activity that could result in feelings of anxiety or depression.

Below are five facts about mindfulness, explaining how it can help us work towards being the best versions of ourselves.

1. It Frees the Mind

Usually our minds are full of thoughts. We are constantly planning, reflecting, wondering, or worrying about the future. Imagine what we could achieve if we could give our minds a break from these patterns. Mindfulness forces us into the present moment. When we are fully present, our mind is full of experience, and subsequently, there is no room for worrying or self-deprecation. When the mind is free, we are able to get outside our comfort zone to see the world in a new light, uncover new thoughts and cultivate the best version of ourselves.

2. Puts You in Touch with Your Experience

As far as anyone knows, you only have one life to live. This life can be joyful, beautiful and full of wonder – but it is up to you to make it so. If you are walking through the park and your mind is busy running your usual thought patterns, chances are you are going to miss the magic unfolding all around you. Mindfulness is taking time to listen to the birds and see the changing colors of the seasons. It means smelling home-cooked food and really listening to the music that surrounds you. Learning to be in touch with your experience is a valuable lesson. It leads to a rich purposeful life, full of inspiration. Sometimes it may be easier to plug into your smartphone or fill your mind with its usual chatter, but doing so sacrifices your opportunity to connect with the world around you and enjoy the simple things in life. Our lives are not the big events that happen to us, but rather a collection of small everyday occurrences. Learning to find happiness in the small things leads to a more content and joyous way of being.

3. Gives You New Ideas

Beneath the anxieties and stresses that usually encompass our internal worlds, are a plethora of unexplored ideas and visions just waiting to be uncovered and investigated. Practicing mindfulness clears away the mental chatter and makes way for new creativities to emerge. Contrary to popular belief, creativity is not a trait or a skill; it is a state of mind. This state of mind comes to us when we our relaxed and inspired. One great way to achieve this is through the use of mindfulness. Mindfulness gives us constant inspiration by allowing us to see the world around us clearly, and it relaxes us by freeing us of our habitual thought patterns. When we are mindful, we can find creative solutions to our problems, become more productive at work, and maybe even find motivation to acquire a new skill.

4. It Involves Curiosity, Openness, and Acceptance

Mindfulness is not just about rooting your mind in the present moment; it is about approaching the present with childlike curiosity and exploring what it can bring you. Sometimes this may be physical, but other times it may be a thought or feeling that arises as a reaction to what is going on around you. It is important to be open to whatever may show up, accepting and listening to what it has to say. In each moment lies hundreds of lessons waiting to be learned, and mindfulness brings us closer to unearthing them.

5. It Improves Your Ability to Focus

The phrase “practice makes perfect” also applies to mindfulness. At first, you may find that you can only stay present for a second or two. This is completely normal. In fact, research has shown that the average ‘uninterrupted now’ moments, typically last between 1-10 seconds. The important thing is – without judgement – to calmly bring yourself back to the present each time you notice your mind has wandered. As you strengthen the muscle of the mind, your ability to focus will also improve. You will notice you have greater control over your concentration, and will be able to divide up your mental energy effectively and accordingly. This will improve your productivity levels, making it easier to hold an engaging conversation or even enjoy a good book.

The best thing about mindfulness is that it is highly accessible. It is completely free and requires no equipment other than yourself. You can practice mindfulness anywhere, at anytime, completely at your own discretion. During wholesome activities such as cooking, reading, walking, or spending time with friends and family, are the best times to cultivate mindfulness. Bring your mind back into reality and focus on whatever task is at hand. Soon, you will feel the pressures and stresses of daily life drift away from you as you fully immerse yourself in the bountiful experience we call life.


Supporting a Friend Who Has Cancer

Dr. Lidia Schapira,

If one of your friends has cancer, you may be wondering the best way to support him or her. Even though you want to help, it can be hard to know what to say or do.

It is important to remember that there are no set rules and every friendship is different. Be sure to think about your unique dynamic and let that guide you as you try to support your friend. Keep it simple. Remember that often the little things mean the most.

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Conversations About Cancer: Debunking the “Right” and “Wrong” Words

By Ali O’Grady –

Since launching Thoughtful Human in 2017, I have had the privilege of speaking with hundreds of people about their journeys through adversity. From cancer, to addiction, mental health, and beyond, one thing has become clear — amidst our greatest challenges, we all find ourselves in moments where we are simply at a loss for words.

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