What are your thoughts on “the virus”?


All my readers have likely heard of a virus going around that is causing a bit of a stir. I had the idea of writing a blog post on this topic, but you’ll notice that the title I’ve used refers to “your thoughts” instead of “my thoughts.” Keep reading and you’ll see how this makes sense.

Another health concern

We’ve been here before, and we may see this kind of situation again, so I’ve chosen not to name any particular virus, bacteria or anything. This way, if you find yourself faced with a similar health scare in 6, 12 or even 60 months, you can refer to this blog post for a refresher. With this in mind, I’ll call the current health concern the “Big Incredibly Scary Thing Everyone is Chatting About”, or Bisteca for short.

So, what are your thoughts on Bisteca?

There’s lots of stuff going on right now, isn’t there? Lots of stuff to worry about.

Yet, one thing you’ve probably heard about the current virus going around is that the best thing you can do for yourself is to take care of your body, keep your immune system in good shape and maintain your good health.

Do you know what the biggest factor is that reduces the efficiency of your immune system and brings down your overall health? It’s stress, and negative thoughts in general. Stress has been proven to suppress your immune system, making your body vulnerable to any foreign invader.

  • I want to note that this isn’t a new age, hippy-dippy way of thinking. The idea that all illness begins with stress has already taken root in Western medicine. I don’t need to quote any spiritual or scientific texts to back up my words – Google is at your fingertips to do your own research.

So, when you hear about Bisteca, how do you feel?

I bet a number of my readers are stressed about it. Many people start and end their days by watching the news, getting constant updates about which countries have reported cases, how many people are quarantined, and perhaps even how many patients have died. Many people have implemented additional hand-sanitizing routines while also giving extra wipe-downs to shopping carts, door handles, and so forth. You might not call this stress, but this is still behaviour based on worry, and worry is really a type of stressor.

Do you see the irony in this? The best way to defend yourself is to maintain good health, yet many people are increasing behaviours that cause stress, and are therefore negatively impacting their health.

So, now my thoughts on Bisteca

Well in fact, I have very few thoughts on Bisteca because I’ve given it very little space in my mind (if any). I don’t keep up with the news about it, I don’t click on any videos that talk about it, and I give it very little attention – other than when other people feel it’s important to give me an update, at which point I usually politely change topics.

As I mentioned above, many people will watch the evening news before going to bed. Do you know how I spend my evenings? My husband and I watch a couple sitcoms, then turn off the TV and spend the last hour before bed cuddled on the couch simply talking. This is about a zillion times less stressful than watching the evening news – and really, before bed, which do you think leads to sweeter dreams: a talking head bringing you all the unpleasantness of the world or the warm embrace of a special someone?

On a daily basis, I also avoid other stressors. If I’m really not in the mood to clean the bathroom, I don’t clean it. I choose to be okay with the soap scum in the shower for one more day. If I don’t feel like washing the dishes today, I won’t. I know they’ll get clean at some point. I apply this to a number of social contexts too: the friends who constantly made fun of my vegan choices? ¡Adiós amigos!

Forcing yourself to do something you really don’t want to do only sours your mood. Why add that stress? And surrounding yourself with people who belittle you will be a drain on your soul. Wouldn’t it be more enjoyable to find people you click with?

  • You might be saying “But, Jean, there are so many things I have to do, and can’t avoid them.” If you feel this is the case for you, I invite you to sit and meditate with these “must-do”s. These may represent an instance where learning to say “no” will give you a sense of freedom like you’ve never had before. If it’s an instance where something must be done (say, paying a bill), perhaps a change of perspective will help: you do have a choice to not pay a bill, but instead you are choosing the option that gives you a service like electricity or cable.

Finally, I also have faith in my body’s ability to maintain good health. On top of my daily practice of mind-body awareness, there are practically zero synthetic chemicals in my home and I nourish myself almost completely with organic food. I don’t want to start preaching in this blog, but I find it ironic and also a bit sad that so many people choose to use synthetic preservatives, pesticides, herbicides and other chemicals with the idea to improve their lives while there is growing evidence that these same products are ruining our health and shortening our lives.

Final thoughts

Are you worrying about Bisteca, or are you taking care of your mind, body and soul on a day-to-day basis to improve your immunity and be as healthy as you can be? When everyone around you is getting all worked up about the latest health scare, are you getting caught up in the fervor, or are you focusing your energies on the things you can do to keep your peace and enjoy your health?

So, what are your thoughts? Are you focusing on health or illness?

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2 thoughts on “What are your thoughts on “the virus”?

  • Lorna

    Hi Jean: Always nice to hear a your perspective on issues. People call me the ostrich as they feel I bury my head in the sand about many issues. I feel that I will do what I can, in any situation, but try not to add more negative energy into the great milieu. I loved Mother Theresa’s message: “Don’t invite me to an anti-war rally but I would gladly support a peace rally.” (or something close to that) That is my thought on the Bisteca and how I endeavor to live my life, sometimes not a successfully as I would like. My life seems determined to teach me that lesson. On the vegan issue: I feel badly that you had to exclude people from your life due to your choice of what to eat. Why do people feel they need to express any opinion on a choice someone makes if it doesn’t affect them??? Mutual respect for the choices and beliefs of others could make our world much more peaceful. Namaste my friend. And say Hi to your husband too.

    • Jean Post author

      Hi Lorna,

      I’m happy to hear from you!

      People also sort of see me as an ostrich hiding from the world. But the not-too-ironic thing that I’ve noticed is that the people who are telling me I should be keeping up with the news are the most stressed people that I know. Those of us who are “hiding our heads in the sand”, I believe, are still in touch with the world, but perhaps in intangible ways that are healthier for us to keep our peace.

      I sometimes slip up when applying some of these concepts too. Some events from my social circle are starting to be cancelled in response to Bisteca, and I’m finding myself getting all worked up about that. (“How could they give into fear like that?”, I say to myself.) So, I’m indirectly letting Bisteca affect my mood, and thus not adding as much positive energy to our human milieu as I could.

      As for the vegan thing, some humans simply don’t like other humans that are different. Today, it’s considered rude to say “you’re gay, but you just haven’t found the right woman yet”, but it’s still okay to say “you’re vegan, but you just haven’t found a steak you like.” (That joke was funny exactly zero times.) The only thing we can do is cultivate our own self-awareness and be loving to those who aren’t ready to do so for themselves.

      I send a big hug out to you and wish you peace, even as the world tries to stir up angst in us.
      Namaste.