I used to get sick 4 times a year, like clockwork. I would stay sick for a week or so, and I would usually miss a few days of work as a result. It was miserable. Today, I hardly ever get sick, even though I work in a medical clinic and I’m constantly exposed to sick people. Here are some tips and tricks to avoiding getting sick:
1. Practice Qigong Regularly
The single best way to avoid getting sick is to strengthen your immune system. I don’t know of any medicine in this world that does this better than practicing Qigong daily. This is preventative medicine at its best. By building your immune system, you’ll be protecting yourself against colds and flus (and a whole lot more).
I practice every day, without fail. Do you think there’s a connection between me not getting sick and me practicing every day? You bet there is.
If you’re having trouble practicing regularly, then work on building some discipline.
2. Activate Your Immune System
Did someone just sneeze or cough on you? Did you touch a doorknob full of germs? Then do the 2-Minute Drill as soon as possible.
The 2-Minute Drill is like a light switch that activates your immune system. The quicker you flip that switch, the sooner your system will be able to deal with the germs. Remember, the human body is constantly exposed to germs, and yet we don’t always sick. It’s only when your immune system is weak that germs can get through your defenses.
3. Don’t Stress
Studies have shown that stress dramatically suppresses your immune system. An argument with your spouse, a traffic jam, a depressing newspaper headline — all of these things suppress your immune system, making you more vulnerable to colds and flus. Obviously, it’s best to have a comprehensive stress management system like Tai Chi and Qigong because practicing these arts will gradually reduce the levels of stress you feel.
But it’s also important to manage your stress in the moment. You can start dealing with stress by simply being aware of it. Catch yourself, and think, “I’m stressed out right now, and it’s not helping. I’m probably making myself sick.” That’s it. Just be aware of your stress, and it will gradually lose power over you.
If you don’t know how to unwind your stress, then try my free audio lesson.
4. Don’t be a Worrywart
Do you know someone who is constantly worried about getting sick? Maybe he washes his hands a bit too often, or refuses to touch public surfaces, or maybe he just kvetches constantly about getting sick. Sound familiar?
What this Worrywart doesn’t realize is that worry itself suppresses the immune system! It’s fine to be hygienic, but don’t obsess. According to Chinese theory, the emotion that most powerfully blocks the flow of energy through the body (you guessed it!) is worry. So stop it.
5. Get Some Sun
Most Americans don’t get enough sun. Period. We spend most of our time indoors, and we’re lucky to get a few minutes of sun a day.
Go outside, sit in the sun, and enjoy a free dose of Vitamin D. Generally speaking, we shouldn’t practice Qigong, Tai Chi, or Kung Fu in direct sun, but it’s great to practice outdoors, where we’ll get reflective sunlight. After we finish practicing, we can go take a walk and enjoy the sun.
(You may also want to read tip #11 in my article 12 Ways to Get Healthier on a Budget.)
6. Go to Bed Early
Chances are, you don’t sleep enough. It’s common in America. Some might even call it an epidemic.
Quality sleep is an important part of a healthy immune system. If it’s flu season, if you’re worried about getting sick, then go to bed early. Turn off the TV, close the computer, and go to bed. Get 9, 10, or even 11 hours of sleep. I’m not joking.
If you think that sleep is a waste of time, if you say things like “I’ll sleep when I’m dead,” then you’re being short-sighted. You know what’s a waste of time? Getting sick. By not sleeping enough, you’re making yourself sick.
(See tip #9 in my article 12 Ways to Get Healthier on a Budget.)
7. Take a Nap
Studies show that napping is good for the health. Don’t listen to workaholics who say that napping is for lazy people. If napping is for lazy people, then longevity is also for lazy people because nappers tend to live longer.
Feeling worn out? Then take a nap. I understand that not everyone has this luxury during the work week. But what about weekends? Are you your own boss on Saturday and Sundays? Start there.
(Take a look at tip #10 in my article 12 Ways to Get Healthier on a Budget.)
8. Build Motivation
It’s no fun being sick. While you’re feeling miserable, let that misery build your resolve. The simple truth is that the power to strengthen your immune system is in your hands. When you get sick and tired of being sick and tired, that’s when things will start to change.