Most people live in the belief that bad things would never happen to them. It only happens to others and therefore are caught unawares when Life threatening diseases such as a Heart attacks or Cancer happen to them. While sometimes these calamities do befall people who have lived a “straight” life, it most often happens to those not following healthy habits of living.
As a doctor who has been in active practice for more than 20 years, I have a noted a pattern of thinking that my patients (those who have developed disease) have demonstrated. I hope that my writing about it will help you in someway.
1. BEING FOOLISHLY OPTIMISTIC – unrealistic expectation that everything will be OK.
My grandfather lived up to a hundred and so will I!
2. LIVING IN DENIAL
Nothing will happen to me!
3. DON’T FIX IT IF IT AIN’T BROKE!
– many patients will rationalise that as they have no physical complaints they need NO testing, NO monitoring and NO Doctor.
4. I AM NOT GOING TO WORRY ABOUT DEATH OR DISEASE!
Many patients think of it as being silly and negative to think about disease or death.
5. IGNORANCE OF DISEASE MECHANISMS.
-Ignorance of importance of hygiene – personal, home and work environment.
-Vaccination for health – “only children need it” or “I’ll go when my time comes”
-a belief that youth and life has to be enjoyed, therefore eat, drink (alcohol) and smoke all
you want till a certain age – after which you would have to be careful anyway!
-failure to recognise the importance of sleep for a healthy life. “I can’t afford to sleep”
-Lack of focus on STRESS control and STRESS release.
-bad attitude to life – being negative, helplessness, reactive victim like thinking instead of being positive with proactive, goal oriented thinking.
6. MOST WILL NEGOTIATE THE PRICE THEY NEED TO PAY TO BE HEALTHY
“I would do anything for love…..but I just wont do that” – Meatloaf
-Even if they realise what they need to do to stay healthy, they would find excuses for not
doing them! I don’t have the time, I thought that I would do it later!
7. MAKE THE MOST OF IT WHILE YOU CAN – You only live once and therefore make the most of what you can. “DON’T WORRY, BE HAPPY”
8. BLAME SOMEONE ELSE/GET ANGRY WHEN THINGS DON’T GO WELL – find a scapegoat,
blame someone else when things go wrong, transfer all your unhappiness, fear, worries on someone else.
9. BLAME YOUR GENES – people blame their genes rather than take responsibility for their lifestyles!
10. If nothing else satisfies you BLAME THE DOCTOR FOR LATE/WRONG DIAGNOSIS OR LATE REFERRAL!