"Ironically, my breast cancer diagnosis, which should have been the worst year of my life, was the best thing that ever happened to me," Joan tells First for Women. "I think anyone who goes through cancer and survives it will tell you they come out a different person on the other end — that they are more appreciative of every day of their life, of everything in their life," she explains. "I have so many things I’m doing and learning about and so many things I want to do to make my time on this earth really matter. All that makes me excited about life each day.”
Joan shares her savvy strategies for staying energized as she juggles parenting her two sets of twins, writing, and all of the philanthropic opportunities her journey has led her to.
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Unplugged time is crucial to Joan. "If I was going to say one thing that causes the most stress today that we didn’t have 10, 20, or 30 years ago, it’s the phone," says Joan. "I never allow phones at the dinner table or at a meal — whether we’re home or out. Unplugging is really important these days.”
Joan also has the right idea when it comes to smart snacking. "I’ve pretty much cut out dairy from my life. I eat as little wheat as I can and I’ve practically eliminated sugar," she says. "Sugar is like fertilizer for cancer cells, so I try to avoid anything that raises my blood sugar levels too much. But that doesn’t mean I won’t go to a pizza joint and have pizza with my kids. I try to live a normal life."
On looking radiant, "People always says to me, 'Wow, you don’t seem to age!' and they want to give me lotions or laser treatments. But I’m not the lotion or potion type of girl — I’m the attitude girl," says Joan. "To me, nothing is going to make your face prettier or look younger than happiness."
This story originally appeared on our sister site, First For Women.