Consider the following:
- Perceiving your daily activities as exercise can result in significant drops in weight, waist circumference and blood pressure, without any actual changes to your reported eating or exercise.
- Having a make-over decreases your blood pressure, but only if you perceive that it makes you look younger.
- Pretending to be a pilot improves your vision by around 40%.
- Your blood sugar level (if you are diabetic) will rise and fall based more on your perception of time, than the actual time.
- Imagining yourself getting the cold makes you 4 times more likely to actually get it.
- Viewing your cancer (if you are a cancer survivor) as ‘cured’, as opposed to ‘in remission’, correlates to you being physically healthier, more energetic and less depressed.
- You have about a 1 in 3 chance of healing yourself from virtually any disorder if you are given a placebo (an effect that remains even if you know it is a placebo).
- Pretending you have travelled back in time (if you are elderly) significantly improves your strength, flexibility, posture, height, weight, hearing, vision, arthritis, and makes you look physically younger (!!) when judged by people blinded to the study.
Each of these scientific findings makes good sense when we see our mind and body as deeply connected, and understand that our beliefs are far more important than we give them credit for.
If you have a health problem that you can’t overcome, I think it is at least worth asking: is it because I actually can’t, or because I have been living in a society that has made me think that I actually can’t?