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A recent Global News article reported about the immense threat that the current coronavirus pandemic presents to Canadians’ mental health. The stated potential risks could arguably be relevant to the world’s populations given the global reach of this health crisis. As well-intentioned as this article may be, it contains some potentially dangerous suggestions about our mental health that should be considered with caution.

The article states that prolonged isolation and worry about the pandemic has begun to take a toll on mental health. It goes on to report that “it’s estimated that roughly 11 million Canadians will [emphasis added] experience “high levels of stress in family and work settings,” according to Health Canada data revealed to Global News. This threat to mental health will be caused by “residual stress, depression…financial pressures, learning how to re-engage with the world in [a] new way”, etc. Mental health strategist and speaker, Mark Henick is quoted in the article as saying “That’s going to be difficult for a lot of people [emphasis added]. And those are exactly the kinds of risk factors that lead to increasing rates of depression, anxiety and even suicide.” The article further reports “Our mental health won’t be the same after coronavirus pandemic, experts say[emphasis added].

Unfortunately, many of us will conclude, Well, if the experts say that our mental health won’t be the same after the coronavirus pandemic, then it must be true. However, numerous studies have been conducted about the power that suggestion has on the subconscious mind, as well as the power of thought in creating a person’s reality.  The business world relies heavily on these powers to market and sell numerous products and services world-wide.

In his book, The Power of Your Subconscious Mind, Dr. Joseph Murphy outlines that your subconscious mind is constantly working, and that it is possible to harness its power for your benefit. Furthermore, through meditation and repeated messaging, your subconscious can effectively resolve any problem in your life, including improvement to both your emotional and physical health. This entire process works by visualizing success and getting rid of negative thoughts in order to realize your dreams. One of the many true stories Dr. Murphy considers is that of Scottish surgeon, Dr. James Esdaille. During the years from 1843 through 1846, Dr. Esdaille performed approximately 400 amputations prior to the development of anesthesia. Astoundingly, the mortality rate for his procedures was quite low at just two or three percent. He attributed this success to his technique of hypnotically suggesting to his patients that they would not develop an infection as a result of the operation. This strategy was sufficient to prompt a response in both the subconscious mind and the bodies of his patients.

In essence, we encourage you to be mindful of the words, ideas and images that you meditate upon as well as that you repeat to yourself. This is particularly important in regards to all aspects of your health, as well as your finances, relationships, career, etc. For many of us, our negative self-talk results in the very circumstances that we repeat to ourselves. Many know or refer to this phenomenon as a self-fulfilled prophecy. Instead, we should repeat or affirm desirable objectives in order to establish positive mindsets that can receive our desired outcomes. Here are 10 sample health affirmations that we can repeat to ourselves daily:

I am strong, healthy and energetic.

My mind is always attuned to healthy thoughts

Every day, in every way, I grow healthy and stronger

I see myself completely healthy –always

I choose happiness and health in my life

I have vibrant health

I have a healthy mind. I have a healthy body

I have replaced all negative thoughts with reassuring ones.

I have let go of mentally replaying negative situations in my mind

I have let go of all feelings of despair and hopelessness

Dr. Joseph Murphy reminds us “Busy your mind with the concepts of harmony, health, peace, and good will, and wonders will happen in your life.”

The Bible offers similar encouragement: Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. [Philippians 4:8]

As you repeat affirmations and meditate on desirable things, you may be inspired to take certain actions to bring about the positive circumstances you are seeking. Our article “7 Practices to Maintain Peace and Contentment” suggests some effective steps you can take to foster great mental health. You may also consider exploring the contents of Wellness Together Canada, an online portal created by the Canadian federal government to provide Canadians with free resources, tools and professional support services to help with mental health: Wellness self-assessment and tracking * Self guided courses, apps, and other resources * Group coaching and community of support * Counselling by text or phone. Finally, you may wish to seek the assistance of a health professional or spiritual leader, some contact links for which are at the end of this article.

The overriding point is that your subconscious mind is open to suggestion for your good or for your destruction. The good that you desire can be established either by solely feeding your subconscious with positive messages and images, and/or by opening your subconscious through positive suggestions, such that you believe your desired outcomes are possible and are willing to take certain actions to bring them about.

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