Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Heredity of Illness

Here's a question for all you bright minds out there: how much of an influence do our families have on the illnesses we get? Some may say, "Well, a huge influence because many illnesses are hereditary." Are personality traits hereditary too then? And how much of an influence do those traits have on our health? And how do those personality traits interact with our environment to then lead to loss of health?

This is what I'm studying right now, and I feel like I just opened a can of worms I never knew existed. Health always seemed so cut and dry. But it's not.

For the past three weeks I've been going deep into who I am and who I learned to be from my parents and grandparents, and pinpointing what traits and habits are keepers and which ones are reeking havoc in my life (e.g., not being able to stand up for myself, eating canned food, being too accommodating, not making time for myself/my health). If you think you didn't learn that from someone, you're wrong. (And I'd really love to have someone counter this or vouch for it as well. Please share your insights.) Who would've thought that since my dad always has to be the last one at the party to help vacuum and take the trash out (even if it wasn't his party!!) that I'd be the same way? One of my brothers admitted he's that way now too. Curses. It's a fight to get myself to leave a party without feeling guilty that I didn't help clean up. All I hear in me head is, "You stay until the work is done."

I bet you'll be surprised at what you unravel as you think about how your personality type handles stress, your everyday decisions, and your environment, and how you learned much of that from the people you were raised by—either by adopting their ways or doing the opposite.

1 comment:

Vee said...

It took me YEARS of therapy to stop blaming my parents for things I did! I realize you aren't 'blaming', but trying to understand, so that you can retrain yourself to think & act for yourself in a healthy choice kind of way. Isn't it fun? Good for you!