“Being sick is just your body’s way of saying you’re too awesome, and you need to slow down, so everyone can catch up.”
Being sick sucks, right? It can put you in a depressing mood and everything, be it eating, talking or simply getting out of bed seems like a chore.
But what if I said that there are certain benefits of becoming sick?
As a child, I loved being sick as the advantages far outweighed the disadvantages. If I woke up with sniffling and body aches, I would almost smile. As mom would take my temperature, I would pray for it to be above 100. Why did I do that?
No, I was not a masochist or insane in anyway. My primary goal in wanting to get sick was not having to go to school. (These days course, that’s futile because of virtual classrooms but that’s a different conversation). Aside from that, other advantages included my parents paying extra attention to me and taking care of me like a prince. I could eat and drink what I wanted and there was no pressure to indulge in household chores. And let’s not forget extended TV privileges and finding out what the fuss is over those cheesy daytime soap operas.
What I didn’t realize back then is that I was tapping into psychological advantages that every kid taps into but forgets as he or she gets older like we all do. Many psychologists have suggested over the years that when we get sick, it’s our bodies telling us to slow down and listen to them.
Award-winning physician Dr. Susan Biali Hass wrote an article on this subject on pyschologytoday.com.
Hass suggested that the earliest symptoms of any ailment start with stress as stress is a big component in how our bodies react in a particular climate. It could be a headache; it could be excessive itching or a small cough. When that happens, it’s normal for us to want a quick-fix solution.
If you have a headache, you pop an aspirin. If you cough a little too much, you drink cough syrup. You scratch every itch as hard as you can till it goes away. While doing all of those of things what we all never think of doing is coming up with the root of the problem. And before you know it, that itch is now a full-blown rash. That cough has turned into the flu.
In the article referenced above, Hass said that if we take the time to examine the early signs of ailments, the chances of getting sick are less. Those early signs are our bodies sending us warnings. If we listen to them, at least we’re better prepared.
That’s not to say, of course, that simply being calm about something makes you invulnerable. If there’s a virus going around you, it’ll still affect you like it does anyone else. But stress will exacerbate the symptoms while being in a calm state will keep them steady. They physical symptoms will of course be there and simply “thinking positive” won’t get rid of them. But psychological symptoms will add to them.
If you do ignore the early signs and get sick, there’s still a lot to learn from. Think about why you got sick in the first place and the roots of your symptoms. Use the time you’re stuck in bed to reflect on all the events preceding that moment. When looking back, you can trace back to the time when your body started warning you. Like a detective, look back on where you were and in what kind of environment when those early signs started. You might be surprised with the conclusion(s).
Have you ever examined your ailments like a doctor does? Have you ever looked at physical ailments in psychological manner? When getting sick, do you ever trace back your steps and locations in a detective-like manner? If not, would you ever consider doing so? Why or why not? Share your thoughts and experiences by commenting below on our secure servers.
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