Door in Hospital

Thoughts Make You Sick: “Deep In It” Theory

Are you Deep In It? In other words, do you believe your “story” so much that your thoughts make you sick?

I recently went to dinner with a friend who also has a genetic illness. During our meal, he started talking about how he doesn’t believe he’s going to live to be 50 years old. He then started talking about how his liver used to hurt and how he believes that my health is better than his.

He then said he should get medical tests done to see if his suspicion is true. deep-in-it

After listening to him spill all of his fears onto myself and my food, I said to him, “You are so Deep In It.”

This is what I say to anyone who is completely obsessed with their sad ‘little me’ story.

These stories have nothing to do with things that are actually taking place in the present moment. Like, in our case, the two of us having dinner at a nice restaurant.

I absolutely loathe these types of conversations, because they are a complete downer, extremely negative, and huge waste of time.

I told him that he will make his fears come true by constantly rehashing them and believing in them. He considered whether or not I was right and I considered how I could make the conversation a little more spirited.

This video discusses the topic in greater detail. Please share it with someone whom you feel might be hurting him or herself by obsessing over their ‘sad little me’ stories.

Here are a bunch of studies that prove that being “Deep In It” is harmful to one’s health:

“A series of studies from around the world has shown that if you believe something could make you ill, it might well do just that. Bad news promotes bad physiology. I think that you can persuade people that they’re going to die and have it happen.”

“A study in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences links “negative” brain activity with a weakened immune system.”

Get Out Of “It,”

About the Author

Josephine Bila

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I’m Josephine Bila, LMSW, a licensed social worker for you — the health seeker who craves an energized body, strong relationships, and the willpower to overcome any obstacle.

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  1. Josephine,
    I totally understand what you are saying, but I think all of us sometimes need a pitty me party, but also need to vent and move on. I am not liking that your friend was comparing, one thing I have learned is never compare because you never really know what the other person is going through. My kids sometimes have their own pitty me parties and I explain that everyone has something. Example my kids have Thalassemia, but another individual may not have food on the table, another person may not have love at home, etc…. everyone has something and we can not compare who is better off because you don’t know how that person is taking it. I have to say in the beginning when I found out my kids have Thalassemia  was like your friend having a prolong pitty me party of tears and depression but it was those individuals that had more experience with Thalassemia that pulled me out of that depression and showed me I was over doing it and brought happiness back into my life. That is one of the major reasons I am ever so grateful to all my Thalassemia friends because they brought me life again. I still have moments when I need a pitty me moment, but I jump right back in and sometimes it is those moments that make me stronger to make a difference. Maybe your friend needs to be pointed out what he/she is doing and yes if it continues to a point it is affecting you, it needs to be explained and you need to move on. Yes we make the choice to keep negativity in our lives or to pull the positive in our influences. Good luck with your friend, and keep up the awesome work here. Lots of hugs dear!

  2. bopbopdedoup you’re totally right.  Everyone has inner demons. I certainly do.  Maybe I’ve conquered some fears, but I certainly haven’t conquered them all.  My struggles come from relationships and constantly finding myself with the wrong men. I think my friend got under my skin b/c he was repeating the same story over and over as if it was going to change.  You’re also right that everyone has something.  Maybe it’s not an illness, but it’s a drug addiction or trouble finding a job.  Anything… life is complicated and sometimes there are no easy answers but to reprogram the way you think about things in order to lift yourself out of whatever you’re in.  Thanks for the comment. xo

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