Negative thinking and your health

Why you should seek health, not healing

Have you, or someone you love, been rattled by a shock discovery of cancer, diabetes or other chronic illness? In such profound moments of vulnerability, we become obsessed to seek the answers of, “Why me?”, “Why them?” or “Why now?”

Our obsession often turns 180 degrees from inward reflection to seeking the saving grace of medical professionals. I have written this blog for you to discover if you are indeed “facing” the challenge the right way.

Conventional therapy typically involves surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy or life-long medication to “treat” the disease. Beyond this, thought to the underlying cause or nature of the chronic disease is often overlooked. This is not for lack of concern or care; rather, it’s because our current medical model is one that we have inherited from our forefathers. Rapid diagnosis of the “disease” and swift “therapy” is the norm. For instance:

  1. The surgeon: “If in doubt, cut it out!”
  2. The endocrinologist: “Let’s balance your hormones to ‘fix’ your body!”
  3. The integrative-medicine GP: “What are the underlying reasons that may have contributed to the disease that is now present?”

Your health: an opportunity to reflect

Moving beyond the necessity to treat the diagnosed disease, accompanying your diagnosis comes the opportunity to self-reflect on the following:

  1. Being grateful for the life you have lived.
    Appreciate that there are many just like you who are in a more debilitated state of health. Sadly, we often do not value our health until it is taken from us. On this point, I cherish the words of Passenger, a popular rock band:”Well you only need the light when it’s burning low; Only miss the sun when it starts to snow; Only know you love her when you let her go … and you let her go.”
  2. Reassessing your relationships.
    Staring death in the face has a tremendous ability to focus our thoughts on what matters most to us. Interestingly, the most vital and vibrant personalities I have researched are either acutely aware of the frailty of their life or have cheated death by escaping a major trauma or illness. Just consider the following two people.

Ricardo Semler


CEO and Latin American Businessman of the year, Ricardo Semler gave a practical yet eye-opening TED talk in October 2014. He devotes two days per week to “learning how to die”, knowing he is living on borrowed time with a strong family history of cancer. The bucket list of things he wishes to do before he dies is rostered into his weekly calendar. Why look back with regrets at things you wished you had done?

It is at this junction that the words of the Dalai Lama come to mind, when he was asked what surprised him the most. He replied “man”, in reference to how humanity lives it’s life: “He sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present.”

Mahatma Gandhi


As a young lawyer, Mahatma Gandhi faced a “near death” experience upon returning to South Africa in the hands of an angry mob. The crowd was ready to lynch him for exposing the cruelty of the ruling minority in South Africa yet he was saved from death by the intervention of the wife of the police superintendent. Famously, Gandhi later found the path for social justice through nonviolent protest, and we are enlightened with his immortal words: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

The choice is yours

The ultimate destination that each of us ought to seek is Health and happiness – and to be fully engaged in our lives. On this note, I give credit to Brene Brown, who eloquently encourages others “to embrace vulnerability” as a sign of strength and not weakness.

I conclude by requoting former US president, Theodore Roosevelt who was the inspiration for Brown’s book Daring Greatly: “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; … who at best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.”

Dr Nader Malik

Dr Nader Malik

Dr Nader Malik is a cosmetic and integrative dentist whose core treatment philosophy is to make a visible difference to the lives of his patients so that they can be inspired to laugh, smile and share the same experience with others! As a whole-body dentist, he focuses on understanding and treating the strong links between the teeth and the rest of the body. He also enjoys working with medical doctors and allied health professionals to ensure the best outcomes for his patients. Dr Malik practises at Our Medical Dental in Penrith, NSW Australia.

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