Humans behave in odd ways. We worry about things that will never happen, we seek happiness in places we know it can’t be found, we make excuses, shift blame, and tell ourselves lies. And instead of nipping problems when they are small and easily remedied, we wait… and wait… and wait… until those little problems are big ones.
The problems we face are complex, and numerous. They are not limited to just health, just finances, just work, or just relationships. We are often juggling issues in multiple areas of life. And we can whine about it, feel like the world is out to get us, and think that life isn’t fair, but the truth is… this is life. We have ups… but we will always have downs. That’s the way life works.
We think the answer is to avoid these problems all together. That is a GREAT strategy, and worth striving for, but when that fails (and it does fail), you have to go to Plan B.
Since Plan B will be different for each person, and different for each circumstance, it’s not the plan that I want to discuss. It’s the timing. How you respond is obviously critical, but when you respond may matter most.
Having sat through consultations with thousands of patients, I can tell you that people are more alike than different when it comes to behaviors, thinking, and patterns. In regards to health, most tend to wait too long before taking action. Why? One reason… we are stubborn. Another reason… we think our problems will go away on their own.
I’ve come to realize that the five most dangerous words could be… Maybe It Will Go Away. Think how many times you’ve said those words, only to end up in deeper trouble, with bigger problems. I’ve heard these words hundreds of times from new patients as they sat across from me in agony. When asked when the pain, or numbness, or burning, or weakness started, they hesitantly throw out a date that is weeks, or oftentimes months or years, in the past. Then they drop their head in shame as they hear their own words, realizing their foolishness, and say those words… I thought it would go away.
Most of us lead busy lives, and most are pretty tough, so it makes sense that we wouldn’t hyper-analyze, overreact, or jump into action with every small hiccup. And little problems often do just go away. But little problems can quickly become big ones if ignored too long. So, it would be wise to keep an eye on all your problems, and take action sooner than later.
People don’t get heart disease from one bad meal or missing a single workout. A person usually doesn’t go bankrupt because of one bad investment or purchase. A marriage usually doesn’t end because of one single screwup. And people often don’t lose their job because of one missed day. Months or years of an unhealthy lifestyle, overspending, neglect, inattention, and/or disregard slowly erodes at those areas of life. You get warning signs, alerts, and signals that should catch your attention. First, they are subtle nudges, then slightly harsher shoves, and then… BAM… you get hit with a two by four.
Take a look around at your life. Is everything good? Not just okay or tolerable, but are things good? Think about those little signals you are getting indicating some attention needs to be given. Now think about how many things are going on in your life right now where you are saying those five words… Maybe it will go away. They are NOT going away. Don’t wait for the big problems or the crisis. Take action now. And in the words of Henry Ford… “There are no big problems, there are just a lot of little problems.”