Scientists once believed that the mind and the body were separate, that one had no affect on the other. Today we know that’s completely false.

Your stress levels and general mental state can have massive effects on the efficiency of your immune system. Your immune system doesn’t just deal with illnesses like the flu or the common cold, it also helps prevent a whole load of more series illnesses.

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Cortisol is an enemy of the immune system. During times of stress, the level of cortisol rises in the body. The body recognises this increase as an indicator of the fight or flight response and responds by reducing other body functions, including the immune system.

Stress has also been shown to increase the risk of developing immune-based diseases. These include arthritis, psoriasis, eczema and asthma. In time, it is likely that science will show that many other diseases are influenced by stress. Prolonged stress keeps the immune system in a compromised state, which increases the likelihood of getting sick.

Here are some ways to enhance your outlook and boost your immune system at the same time:

1. Get out and socialise.

Enjoying time with others has been shown to lower stress hormones and boost immune activity for several hours afterward. Get out and enjoy quality time with other people.

2. Laughter has a powerful impact on immune function.

Record the shows that make you laugh and try to watch one each day. Read a few jokes from a book or online during your breaks at work. Subscribe to humorous podcasts or YouTube videos. Spend time with funny people! You’ll get the benefit of positive social interaction and laughter.

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3. Practice gratitude.

Giving yourself a little reminder of the great things in your life. This will boost your mood and your ability to fight disease. This is a quick exercise that can turn your mindset around very quickly indeed.

4. Become successful.

Experience success by setting goals you can reach. Big and challenging goals are great, but be sure to have a few easier goals as well. Be happy with your small successes and your immune system will reward you too.

5. Do relaxing activities.

Listening to relaxing music or getting a massage can benefit the immune system. Anything that’s relaxing, without being harmful, seems to have a positive impact on immune function.

Make a list of the activities that you find relaxing. Try to do a few of the items on your list each day.

Tranquil scene of young female sitting in pose of lotus on the beach in the morning

6. Be Patient

Impatience creates stress. Relax and make good use of the extra time. The time will pass regardless of how you spend it. Take advantage of it and stay calm.

7. Use positive affirmations to enhance your mood.

Positive thoughts generate positive feelings. Repeat positive affirmations on a regular basis, especially at stressful times. Keep your mind occupied with something positive. Make a list of positive affirmations that resonate with you.

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8. Be happy!

What makes you happy? Figure it out and spend more time doing it. It could be reading, hiking, dancing, meditating, having a picnic with friends. These aren’t frivolous things. They make life enjoyable and keep you healthy.

Avoid underestimating the impact that your mood and mindset can have on your immune system. Optimism, happiness, fun, love, and success keep your immune system in good working order.

Scientists are only beginning to understand the impact of psychology on physiology. Being happy and positive doesn’t just feel good, but it also strengthens your health.

To your success.