Monday, October 12, 2009

Be Prepared!

By Amy Phillips-Gary

A few days ago a headline on the cover of my city's newspaper advised readers to “Prepare for H1N1.” This cautionary lead was followed up by a list of steps that can be taken in order to minimize the affects of this strain of influenza that's reportedly making the rounds.

Cold and flu season happens every year. This time, however, there has been a particular focus on the H1N1 flu.

Countless news reports and websites share the list of symptoms. You can even go online to track where the H1N1 flu has shown up across the country and the world.

Our local YMCA has reminders posted throughout the building and on all exercise equipment about how to disinfect the space. Signs on the front door make the request that those with H1N1 symptoms to stay away. Bottles of antibacterial hand sanitizer seem to be available everywhere.

The preparations appear in full swing for the expected onslaught of this influenza.

Some of the people I know are getting sick and I even read about a teenager in my city who actually died from complications of H1N1.

But I can't help but wonder if we are preparing so much for a flu epidemic, we are actually making ourselves sick!

When the local newspaper tries to offer me tips for how to “prepare for H1N1,” I just say no thanks!

Instead, I am preparing for health and wellness.

You tend to get what you expect.

You might not realize it but your expectations can actually create the reality you live. Many of us have heard the term “self-fulfilling prophecy.”

This plays out as the slow or troubled child who nobody (including the child him or herself) believes will ever amount to much, ends up meeting everyone's low expectations.

Of course, there are those exceptions to the rule who surpass and overcome limiting expectations, lead successful lives and contribute positively to the world.

The point here is what you expect and what you prepare for usually manifests.

Your expectations are usually based on the past experiences you've had and also what you've learned from others. Expectations are inextricably linked to your beliefs.

This is especially accurate when it comes to your body and your health.

How many times have you been in the presence of a person who was obviously ill and then, after worrying about catching the illness yourself, you inevitably do?

Of course, there are germs floating about. But why is it that some people can seem to walk through a room of coughing and nose-blowing and come through just as healthy and resilient as before and others quite quickly succumb?

I believe that expectations play a huge role in these different experiences.

Even if the law of attraction does not resonate with your belief system, consider the countless scientific studies that show how damaging to the immune system fear and worry are.

I watch my thoughts and I pay attention to the influences I am surrounding myself with.

When I read about the flu, I notice that I often feel concern for my family and myself. I feel compassion for those who are suffering right now and I also feel grateful that at this moment I feel well and full of energy.

After these acknowledgments, I return to my belief that my body (and those of my loved ones) is strong and functioning optimally.

I expect this great health to continue and know that if I do become ill, I will rebound quickly and thoroughly.

When I take an action that affects my health, I choose actions that keep me lined up with this expectation and desired experience.

If taking extra vitamin C or health supplements helps me continue to feel aligned with optimum health, I will take those actions. If continuing to care for my body by washing my hands, exercising regularly and eating a balanced diet feels like it will keep me pointed toward wellness, I will also take those actions.

Pay attention to what you are expecting for your own health. Where do your thoughts tend to spend most of the time?

You can always re-direct your thinking, question your own beliefs and form new expectations for your health and your life. These shifts can happen at any time with beneficial effects.

So, what are you preparing for?


  1. Thanks for this reminder! So wise and so true!

  2. health and wellness. success. prosperity. :) thank you.