When an individual is faced with a problem, their initial strategy may include finding a way to cope with the situation. For example, if they don’t have enough money to pay the rent they may have to borrow money from a friend to handle this crisis situation. In this way they could handle the initial problem of paying the rent, effectively coping with the immediate situation.
Similarly, if an individual were to get sick or experience physical symptoms they may choose an immediate or short term solution to alleviate their discomfort. Taking a medication to suppress a symptom is one example of this strategy and could effectively help someone cope with the symptoms of their illness.
While there is nothing inherently wrong with the strategy of coping, it could be dangerous to believe it is one that will serve their long term interests.
Simply put, the inability to pay one’s rent or the presence of ongoing physical symptoms is a sign of deeper problems. If those deeper problems are not addressed; one could expect to experience more of the same in the future. Why? The underlying environment which created the undesirable situation in the first place, has not changed.
In our society it is an unfortunate fact that a majority of people use the exclusive strategy of coping when it comes to their health. A perusal of our country’s health statistics would easily confirm what I have seen over the last eighteen years of practice. Symptoms suppressed without investigation of underlying cause is a certain recipe for continued loss of health. Conversely, seeking out the underlying causes, whether they are related to nutrition, toxicity or stress, can turn coping into thriving.