Did you know that your words, your thoughts and your actions all have an impact on your immune system? Negative thoughts, words and actions weaken the body. If the body is weakened it is not as able to fight infection as a body that is in a stronger state. In essence, negativity has a negative impact on our immune system and our overall health. We harvest not only what we sow but also what we say, see, hear and feel.
The cold and flu season is already upon us. I am not going to wade into the battle of whether or not to get the flu shot. I will however share with you a few things that you can start doing today to help strengthen your body to face what life may throw at you over the next few months.
A study conducted by the University of Wisconsin in 2003 measured the antibodies in people who were conducting a task that brought on negative emotions. They found that the negative emotions resulted in an increase in electrical activity in the part of the brain that weekend the immune response to the flu shot.
There is actually a whole scientific field of study called Psychoneuroimmunology (PNI) that deals with the relationship between the brain, the mind and the immune system. It studies the affect of these relationships on our susceptibility to disease and our health overall. It encourages the maintenance of a positive emotional and mental state for the prevention of disease and the promotion of optimal performance.
I was recently reading a book on how to move from a an attitude of negativity to bringing more positivity into our lives. As I was reading I became more aware of the negativity in my life and how it makes me feel. Here are a few simple things that I noticed had a big impact on me.
For a while now we have been frustrated with the radio station we were listening to when we woke up in the morning. The music was fine but the station we had on had just under 2 minutes of news. If fact they only had 3 items of news, and one of them was really not what most people would consider news worthy. I was so happy (or so I thought) to finally find a station that gave a much more detailed news report. What I soon discovered though, was that my normal morning cheery disposition (ok I would at least smile) was gone. I felt deflated and down. I realized that the news was having an impact on me. We are so connected now with technology that we have so much information thrown at us and for some reason the news reports are about sensationalism and it seems they think we like to only hear about the doom and gloom. Are there no happy or good things happening in this world? When they do report them they are usually saved for the last page or the last minute of the news cast. All the negative news reports were bringing me down emotionally and physically. Although I don’t want to live in a complete bubble I need to take some control. By being aware of the impact that negativity has on us we can make conscious decisions to turn some of it off by literally turning off the tv or radio. I went back to the short newscast and now I am looking for a station that only plays uplifting music!
What is the first thing that you say in response to the following greeting: “Hi, How are you?” Do you stop and think before you respond? I realized that I really gave my response little thought and that it was not always positive. I listened to others and they too were expressing various levels of negativity and nothing really positive. Here are a few exchanges I have heard just within the past few days. “Oh, Not so bad.” “Alright I guess.” “Oh – You Know” (this one was followed by a roll of the eyes.) “Could be worse but could be better.” “No point in complaining because no one will listen anyway. “Any day when I am on the green side of the sod is a good one.” Even when I heard someone say “Fine,” they really didn’t seem too happy about it.
When we stop and really think about how we are, do we realize how much negativity we express? Do we realize how good we have it? We live in one of the topped ranked countries in the world. We have free education for both girls and boys. We have free healthcare and we do not have to walk long distances to see the practitioner only to then stand in line for several more hours before we can be seen. (a night with a full moon at the emergency ward may be our exception.) We have clean water to drink and affordable food to put on our table. We have social services available to us should we need it. We live in a free country with democracy and no civil unrest or war. When we are asked “ How are you?”; we should we be yelling “Great” I remember someone from work who would always respond with “Fantastic!” Ironically he was actually met with a raised eyebrow or two. We seem to prefer to take the negative stance or at best a neutral stance and then we wonder why we feel so “Blaaah..!”
We are weakened and we weaken others by the negative things that we say. Even those cutesy “one liners” that we may say in jest can weaken our immune system. Our bodies don’t know the difference. Going one step further, we are weakened when someone says something negative to us or we hear something negative. Believe it or not, background noise such as the broadcasting of the news on the radio with all of its negative content can impact us even if we are not consciously listening.
Be mindful of your words and of what you are exposed to. Simply saying “Cancel, Cancel” to remove something negative can help to release that memory from your body. Replace it with a positive response instead. For example: When asked the question “How are you? If you reply with “Alright I guess,” which has a negative tone to it say silently or aloud “Cancel, Cancel” Then replace it with a positive reply such as “Very Well!”
Make a habit of being aware of the negative around you, cancelling it out and replacing it with something positive. Notice how your body feels when you sense the negative. How does it feel when you cancel and replace that negative with the positive? The more you do this the more aware you will be of your body’s response to negativity and how it makes you feel. Soon you will notice the shifts in your body even when you are not consciously aware of the negativity around. Cancel and fill your thoughts with positive one. Even if you don’t really believe your positive comment studies show that you will still reap the benefits. “Fake it till you make it.” Really works!
One other benefit of reducing your negativity is that it can have a positive influence on others around you. Negativity is like not washing your hands or covering your mouth when you cough. Nobody likes it and it is not good for you or the people around you.
So instead of catching the flu this year catch the Positivity Bug. “Attitudes are contagious. Are yours worth catching? “ ~
For those or you have Reiki remember that you can use Reiki to help too!
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