“When I see cancer patients, Alison is the first person I refer them to. I have so much respect for what Alison has done for her own health through her strong will and absolutely fearless spirit. Her journey and work is so inspiring and so needed to help other cancer survivors find their way.”
Dr Marion Weston, Cape Town
Circles of Healing
Working with many cancer clients over the past four years, I have come to realise that the worst side-effect of the disease and the treatment is loneliness and isolation. As one client phrased it: “I felt as if everyone in my life was suddenly on the other side of a pane of glass, unreachable. I knew they loved me, and yet I felt utterly alone.”
I have collaborated with Hilton Calder (psychologist) to create an online support group for clients with cancer (or any other dread disease), the aim of which is to guide the participants through an inner journey of self-examination and exploration using experiential content, and to create a community of support for people going through a similar situation. The combination of curated content and space for sharing creates a powerful atmosphere of authenticity, connection, and hope during each 10-week journey to healing programme.
The programme offers a support structure with experiential content to assist clients to do the inner work needed for healing. We have based the content of the programme on the work of Dr Lissa Rankin: Mind over Medicine, and Dr Kelly Turner: Radical Remission. Here are some of the weekly outcomes as described by one of our participants:</p>
Write a story about a cancer journey so far – during writing this it is possible that things will emerge that you didn’t know about yourself and your cancer which can be deeply healing.
Explore your beliefs your health in general and what you need to let go of to achieve optimal health.
Explore emotional blockages and radical forgiveness. Let go of negative and positive emotions which might be preventing healing.
Write to your cancer and allow your cancer to reply, telling you what it is trying to teach you – this allows so many blockages to open for truly mind-blowing revelations of self-discover.
Guidance on diet, supplements, the right books to read.
And when you are feeling so low and so ill Alison and Hilton will encourage you to look for gems of daily joys to remind you to focus on unexpected pleasures, blessings, and happiness.
“Alison and Hilton are so compassionate, relaxed, supportive, and knowledgeable. The group becomes a gentle support network, where you truly feel that you can be exactly where you are, whether you are having a good week and feeling okay, or maybe you’re feeling very upset and down, perhaps you need some support and advice following a doctor’s appointment, or you may be feeling so sick from chemo that you may feel you can’t attend, with this group, you join where and however you are at. And no one judges you. I am so grateful that I attended the Circles of Healing Course because it helped me focus at a time where my world was spiralling into panic, it helped me become aware of how to deal with this cancer and lean into it and work with it, and the course helped me honour how I was feeling from strong, happy, sad, emotional or depleted.” Kathy Denham
“The space that Alison and Hilton create is a supportive and safe one and has really helped me to not feel so alone on this very scary journey and new world I unexpectedly entered and to also find the gifts that come with a diagnosis. I highly recommend their program to help support you on this journey you are embarking on. ” Bianca Rael
“I joined the programme as I was feeling very alone and did not realise I was bottling up feelings. While undergoing this circle journey, I have felt everything from despair, worry and through to optimism. I have been surprised by the acceptance of the group and the sense of a “family”. I have gained a deeper understanding of the root causes of my diagnosis and a plan for the future. Group support has given me a platform to talk, share, cry and laugh together. I wish there had been more of everything, 10 weeks goes by fast! ” Paul MacMaster
“I joined this programme because other than a gloomy prognosis from the oncologist and the usual chemo protocol that destroyed my cancer and my health and well being in one fell swoop, I found I was entirely alone navigating the most challenging journey of my life. Having weekly contact with others in my position helped me glean practical advice and gave me a sense of belonging to a group of likeminded people. It was invaluable.” Dr Marisa Naude
“Walking the “cancer healing road“ is a scary, dark and very uncertain path for both the patient and the family. As a Brain tumour survivor, I know that the journey from Doing to Being requires that one step into one’s own vulnerability – People tend to step away from cancer patients, as the mirror of their own vulnerability is too daunting. The Healing Circles that Alison Faraday is facilitating, provide a psychological safe place, to express your emotions and to receive guidance and support from a “ herd” that understands and know.” Yolanda Sing, Coach and Writer