Sharpe-Jefferson: Information Can Defeat this Formidable Foe

By Keisa Sharpe-Jefferson

The fear of it can sometimes be worse than reality.

COVID has certainly been a formidable foe, but the reality is that with information, common sense and beefed-up health practices, it can be tackled successfully.

My experience was that the first couple of days, the onset, was the worst part. Its symptoms honestly felt familiar, though, with the sore throat, throbbing headache and nasal drainage. And that’s the deceptive part of COVID in that its symptoms mimic other illnesses, so there’s the temptation to shrug it off.

Had I felt better initially, I honestly may have decided not to go to the doctor. But I couldn’t deny that my body felt really “off.”

Knowing what I was dealing with allowed me to monitor my body and take extra precaution for healing from COVID’s effects.

Let me use this opportunity to say whether it’s COVID, or any illness, early detection is key for successfully fighting any disease or sickness.

Denial won’t win many battles that I know of and, unfortunately, I see too many take this approach, particularly in my community. It’s the idea of what I don’t know can’t hurt me. I’m sorry, but I can’t subscribe to that one.

There are medicines, therapies and other solutions which can help significantly slow or stop the spread of disease or reverse its effects altogether. But information is your best ally in any battle of this sort.

With information you know what to avoid, how to move and when to pivot, if need be. Will having information make you somewhat uncomfortable? It absolutely can.

But it puts the responsibility in the hands of the only person who can change it and who has the highest and best interest in your health, which is you.

So let me encourage you.

Have you been putting that doctor visit off? Be bold enough to make the call and set the appointment. Have you not been feeling your best lately? Get some lab work done to see if any of your levels or critical numbers are off.

Procrastinating when it comes to make healthy, dietary changes? Just know that small, sure steps are just as important as the landslide decisions. Make the smoothie. Add an apple or fruit cup to your lunch. Down an extra bottle of water. These are all small steps that have the potential to reap a huge reward.

Know that I’m cheering for you and if you need to talk, I’m just an email away.

Keisa Sharpe-Jefferson is a life coach, author and speaker. Her column appears each month online and in The Birmingham Times. You can contact Keisa at and visit for natural hair and body products.


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