Nearly everyone has experienced a placebo effect! The fact that you take a medicine tells me that on some level you must believe in it or expect it to work, or you believe in the doctor who prescribed it, or even in the improvement you’ve heard about in other people.
I’ve written a lot about the links between kindness and ageing, and part of my focus has been that kindness is the opposite of stress, at least in terms of how it makes us feel and the physiological consequences of those feelings.
Gandhi’s immortalised words, ‘We must be the change we want to see in the world’, have as much of an impact today as they had when he first uttered them. Most people have an intuitive sense that changing themselves in some way affects others. This is most obvious in a household. Say a person has been under stress for some time and they are having a negative effect on others in the household.
I love to imagine that we live in a magical world. Aside from the dark lord element of the Harry Potter story, I think many of us would love to live in a world where magic was happening all around us and that we could use it.
Empathy is the ability to understand and relate to other people and animals. Empathy is being able to see the world or a situation from someone else’s perspective and also appreciate how they might feel. Empathy can even be in walking in someone else’s shoes, so to speak.
I’ve always thought of myself as having a positive attitude. Not all the time, of course. I think we all have our good and bad days, the latter making positive thinking quite a bit harder, those days when if someone says ‘Think positive’, well, I’ll leave it to your imagination.