Most of the time when we think we’re sick, it’s all in the mind. Thomas Wolfe
Bad moods, feeling low, being under the weather are varied ways to describe our current state when we are going through a tough phase physically, mentally and emotionally. While falling sick with some sort of illness is often an unavoidable condition, far too often we are laid low by our attitude, our thought process and our lack of confidence. Look back at the many times when during school days the onset of exams got us worked up and feeling sick particularly before a tough exam very often mathematics and science. Some similar symptoms would also precede the exam results and the open day when parents are called to meet the teachers and collect the report card. What is common is that the illness may actually be felt and experienced but more often than not it is self induced by anxiety, nervousness and fear.
There are varied reasons for such phantom illness. The most common is our fear and nervousness. Obviously if we were really careful we would ensure that we never got into such a tough situation but we were not disciplined enough to put in our efforts and so when it is crunch time we lose our nerve. Some of us hate confrontation and unpleasant situations and when such an event is anticipated we invariably psyche ourselves into believing we are sick so as to avoid the interaction. In reality though most times we only postpone the inevitable and in the interim we only worry more about the eventual reality. There exists a set of people who want to avoid the painful reality that stares them in the eye and so feel sick merely thinking about the harshness of the truth. These are the people who will display suicidal tendencies, resort to violent reactions and unpredictable behavior.
To overcome our tendency to fall sick or believe we are sick, we need to do a reality check. One has to introspect and ask if we display such tendencies in specific situations. If we can identify the situations then we can attempt to find a cure for our irrational thought process that triggers the sick feeling in us. It is also important that we realize that many a time we by our irresponsibility perpetrate a problem and escalate it to a level where we have little control over it and then feel overwhelmed by it. Telling lies is a sure shot way to get into a maze of trouble from which we cannot unravel ourselves and then we fall sick because the tensions and pressures get to us. We need to change our attitude in order to squarely face the pressures that challenge us daily. Start believing in your abilities, seek out positives in the troubles confronting you and fortify your resolve to gain confidence and self belief.
Remember: “Nine-tenths of our sickness can be prevented by right thinking plus right hygiene – nine-tenths of it!” Henry Miller
- Make a list of the times you felt under the weather but were not really sick. Then look back to the preceding days and note if there were events/ incidents that you faced that were unpleasant. Did someone annoy, humiliate or deliberately ignore you. Did you feel very strongly about not being appreciated? Did you have a confrontation with a superior or subordinate?
- Stress can be a major cause of phantom illness. Seek out those jobs, situations and interactions that generate great stress in you. By being aware of the stressor, you can prepare to reinforce your thinking and action plan so as to lessen the stress within you.
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