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What To Do and Say When Someone Has a Medical Challenge

by | Oct 15, 2018

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month I’m reposting a past newsletter from six years ago.  I just spoke about these tips on a radio show this morning. Enjoy.

New Day, New Do

New Day, New Do

As I complete a recent health journey with breast cancer, here are some communication tips to help you with interacting with your clients, colleagues, and friends who are dealing with medical situations. BTW – I’m fine and I’m grateful.

  • Do stay in touch with someone who’s going through a health challenge – email, text, phone message – all are great.
  • Do NOT ask the person who’s sick to return your call or electronic message. That’s a burden.
  • Do say or text, “You do not have to return this call/text/email.”
  • Do NOT ask, “What can I do to help you?”
  • Do something that you would like someone to do for you such as mail a get well card (appreciated and unobtrusive), meet for a walk, wash her car, make a meal, drive him to a doctor appointment, bring lunch, take her to a manicure place, or make a donation in his honor. And, do tell her that she doesn’t have to write you a thank you note.
  • Do NOT talk about your own experiences (or the medical outcome from your brother-in-law’s mother’s aunt…) with this type of illness. You are there to hear your friend’s story, she is NOT there to hear yours.
  • Do listen, if he wants to talk. That’s right. Just listen. Biggest gift of all.

These tips worked for me, and I hope you will use them as guidelines for you.

Please do your annual checkups. It could save your life. My successful journey resulted from an annual mammogram.

© Karen Cortell Reisman, M.S., author of 3 books and President of Speak For Yourself®, works with decision makers on how to speak with gravitas. It’s all in how you speak for yourself. Karen also speaks about her cousin, Albert Einstein, in a message about hope, resilience and brassieres.

Read more at www.SpeakForYourself.com/blog.




Karen Cortell Reisman, MS, Executive Communication Author & Speaker


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