Just as our skeletal system is the scaffolding supporting our mobility, our immune system supports our health; acting as our first line of defense against pathogens, and keeping our bodies in balance.
Our immune system works to keep our health in balance so we can keep our lives in balance. When we go against our true feelings or desires, however, we send mixed signals to our immune system, which will only act the way we tell it to act.
Here are four ways you can keep your inner truth and aspirations aligned with your outer actions for a healthy immune system.
Show Up (On Time) - We all have places to be and things to do. Whether you're a stay-at-home mom, a meditating monk or a traveling school teacher, part of being human is agreeing to be in a certain place, at a specified time. Living by the clock can be stressful, but being late, or not showing up at all, when you've agreed to be somewhere puts stress on your body, making you more vulnerable to a weakened immune system. Physically, running late increases your heart rate, constricts your muscles and makes your breathing shallow and more rapid. Psychologically, it hurts your self-esteem because you're going against your own word. None of that stress is worth the extra minutes of sleeping in or getting that last thing done before you leave.
Don't Wait, Do it Now - If you've found yourself hesitating going after something you've often dreamed about doing, take a moment to ponder why. Are you waiting for the right timing— after you finish school, or get the holidays over with, or you have more energy. The list can go on forever if you let it. Being proactive about your happiness and satisfaction with life naturally boosts your immunity by flooding your system with dopamine, endorphins and other feel-good hormones. This applies to both big and small things. Take care of the details before you, at the moment. If you don't take care of that little task now, life will move ahead and you'll feel left behind.
Seek Your Own Happiness - Because we are all unique, we needn't look to what makes others happy to figure out our own bliss. You may think having what makes another person happy will make you happy too, but, unless it's truly what your soul desires, you will only confuse your higher self. Mixed messages cause physical tension that puts stress on your immune system. If you love digging in the dirt, go take that community garden volunteer position. If being president of your local business club looks great on paper but is secretly making you miserable, ditch it. The deciding factor for anything in life should be what feels right and best for you! Although it takes exploring, soon enough, you will begin to find things that make you, your body and your immune system say "YES!"
Do Good for Yourself and Others - Altruism, volunteer work, and social interaction all are great ways to boost your immune system. The heart contains cells that synthesize and release hormones such as adrenaline and dopamine, among others. But the heart also secretes oxytocin, commonly referred to as the “love” or “bonding” hormone. When you lend a helping hand your oxytocin level goes up, which helps you relieve stress. Acts of kindness and a sense of belonging also trigger the brain’s reward centers, producing chemicals such feel-good chemicals as dopamine and endorphins.
Practicing these agreements will help you send clearer messages to your immune system, so it can help you help yourself.
See if you can work them into your life in the coming days to create some new habits, a shift in your thinking and, hopefully, a major change in your energy!