29 Mar Josephine Bila’s three tips for finding confidence as a thalassemia patient
Meet Josephine Bila, a thalassemia patient from New York City. She was diagnosed with thalassemia major at the age of six months old and is still receiving transfusions to this day. Living with thalassemia for over 40 years affected her confidence growing up. She is passionate about sharing her story and how she now uses each day as an opportunity for finding confidence. Here are Josephine Bila’s three tips for finding confidence as a thalassemia patient.
1. Finding confidence from within
What is true confidence and where does it come from? It comes when you no longer look to external sources for approval (or disapproval); it comes from knowing who you are at the level of your soul, and it also comes from living less from your mind and more from your heart.
2. Increase confidence by living with intention and heart
According to Qigong (Chinese medicine), all who suffer from illnesses of the blood need to heal the energy of their hearts. That means moving in the direction of absolutely everything that gives you joy, love, support, comfort, and fun. Listen to the voice inside you that tells you to dance while you cook. Listen to the voice inside you that says give everyone around you a hug. Listen to the voice that tells you to savor a delicious piece of cake. If you feel the need to cry – cry. If you feel the need to tell someone that they’re making you uncomfortable and you don’t want to hang out – don’t. Move slower. Act with intention and live from a loving heart, giving love to everyone, everywhere. This is how your heart heals and with a healing heart comes confidence.
3. Finding confidence outside your comfort zone
Western medicine describes the prefrontal cortex as the region of the brain that tells a person they can be self-reliant. It gives a person a sense of purpose. If the prefrontal cortex is not developed, a person will live in a state of co-dependent fight or flight mode until they finally develop this part of the brain.
According to western medicine, you need to develop your prefrontal cortex by taking action. Plan to do something you’ve never done before and do it even if you’re afraid. Live outside of your comfort zone. Fail and fail again. Continuously challenge yourself in new ways. Tell your parents, “I’m sorry, but I’m old enough to do this by myself now.” Take a chance and move in a new direction. If you are very scared of change, then I dare you to sleep in your bed with your feet in the place where your head usually is. Believe it or not, this will cause a neurological shift that will help you think differently when you wake up. Do small things that are outside of your daily routine. Take a new path, speak to someone new, go to a class you’d never consider attending.
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About Josephine: Josephine Bila is a thalassemia patient from New York City. She is a licensed social worker, certified master qigong and reiki practitioner, and patient representative to the United States Food and Drug Administration.