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Venue: Need a Hair Makeover Hair Extensions & Hair-loss Specialist Salon
Date; 20th October
Time: 4pm – 6.30pm
A recent report on anyone having covid suggested that 70% was experiencing hairloss.
We recognise that hair loss can be very upsetting and cause a lack of confidence, affecting your overall self-esteem. We also know that finding the right solution can be confusing, sometimes disappointing and at a time when you are most vunerable.
We are able to offer expert advice and guidance to all of our Alopecia, Chemotherapy & Hair Loss condition and help you understand the various treatments and solutions available.
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Good communication actually consists of many different sub-skills, from appropriate patterns of body language and eye contact to the ability to write clear and accurate reports. Accurate listening and the ability to follow instructions are especially important but are often ignored or taken for granted.
Many people simply do not pay close attention to what others communicate and fail to ask follow-up questions to understand fully. As a result, individuals act on their own inaccurate assumptions and create inefficiencies and frustrations at work. If you can really listen, your work will be a cut above many of your peers.
• Active Listening
• Oral Communication
• Written Communication
• Ability to Follow Instructions
• Attention to Detail
• Nonverbal Communication
Goal-Setting and Planning
Anybody can wish for something to happen, but to accomplish anything (except by accident), you have to make a plan—which surprisingly few people know how to do. Planning requires setting concrete goals, identifying workable action steps, and making a commitment to see the plan through.
• Organisational Skills
• Time Management
• Critical Thinking
• Logical Thinking
• Analytical Skills
Being an empathetic individual comes naturally to some, but is less natural to others. Behaving with empathy is more than feeling bad for someone who’s sad, or sharing in someone else’s joy. It means being able to step into someone else’s world to understand not just what their point of view is, but also to understand why they have that point of view.
• People Skills
• Emotional Intelligence
More Behavioral Skills
Here is a list of more behavioral skills. Required skills will vary based on the job for which you’re applying, so also review our list of skills listed by job and type of skill.
• Asking Questions
• Conceptual Thinking
• Creative Thinking
• Customer Service
• Decision Making
• Gathering Information
• Problem Management
• Problem Solving
• Strategic Planning
• Stress Management
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Well we all found out at the same time that he has a Son living in Queens! How and when did that happen?
by Diane Shawe M.Ed
We all loved the original story line in Coming to America when a young Prince from Zumunda Africa crossed the seas to Queens USA to find his true Love, Wife and future Queen.
It was lovely to see most of the original characters like James Earl Jones the King and new ones like Wesley Snipes as General Izzi, funny, intimidating with an over done swagger, Morgan Freeman, En Vogue to Gladys Knight.
Almost distinct to the sequel Coming 2 America we were able to see a lot more of Zamunda, the richness of the costumes, ornate jewellery and the mixed media of metals, shells, furs and silk unconventional placed throughout the movie. Even the royal announcer was back with his strained singing and you could almost smell the rose petals.
The film had a very distinct feel to the original unique masterpieces the back story plot worked almost effortlessly in todays timeline with a flashback clearing up the mystery of this Prince.
The Sequel movie had lots of mixed reviews, this is natural as viewers had 30 years to totally fall in love with the love story a bit like ‘Pretty Women’, no one wants to see a sequel to the Happy Ever After fairy-tale. It’s hard not to compare the two after a 30 years gap!
If you want to take a trip down memory lane, laughter with a bit of ‘tongue and cheek’ script then grab some popcorn, something nice to drink because entertainment is back in town.
Guided meditation and affirmations with visualised images are very popular on Youtube.
Visualisation activates the creative powers of the subconscious mind, motivating it to work harder at creating solutions. If done correctly some people have noticed new levels of motivation and find themselves doing things that normally they would avoid, but that will take them closer to success.
Visualisation and affirmations can help you to change your beliefs, assumptions, and opinions about the most important person in your life — YOU! They allow you to harness the 18 billion brain cells in your brain and get them all working in a singular and purposeful direction.
Your subconscious will become engaged in a process that transforms you forever. This happens intensionally or unintensionally because the subconcious mind absorbs everything every waking and sleeping moments of your life.
The process is invisible and doesn’t take a long time. this is why it is important to put in the time to visualise and affirm by practicing your techniques, surround yourself with positive people, read uplifting books and listen to audio programs that flood your mind with positive, life-affirming messages.
Negative Thinking is the Enemy
It is no secret that negative thinking is part of almost everyone’s life.
For some reason, it seems it is easier to think negative thoughts, than to think positive thoughts. The mind and emotions are vast, it is true that people are not taught to think expecially at school, so people tend to flip flop between thoughts and emotions.
Unpleasant situations, problems and difficulties arise in everyone’s lives, and these events cause negative thinking.
Often, people are not very much aware of the thoughts they are thinking, and therefore, get easily immersed with negative thoughts and negative moods when listening to the news or to people talking about their problems. There is also a tendancy to gossip and gossip is almosy always negative.
It would be a good strategy to avoid negative discussion which can contribute to negative thinking though, in many cases, it is easier said than done.
So for instance when you decide to start some guided meditation there is often 3 choices. a) music only b) verbal affirmations c) visual/images (There is an agruement for silent meditation but this is not guided but may be personally accomplished privately or in a group)
a) Music: Often people will select a piece of music that either calms them, inspire or motivates them. If the music you come across grates on your nerves then it is unlikely that you will consider listening to it.
b) Verbal Affirmations: Words Matter and if the words you are hearing sound unbelievable then your subconcious mind and your inner self talk will start a negative debate about what you are listening too. So it is important that the verbal affirmation you select empowers your inner self, does not cause resistance or sounds unachievable.
c) Visual Images: Most of you would have heard the term ‘Create a vision board’ the purpose being to solidify the visual image into your subconcious mind everyday reinforcing your desires, dream or wish to come true. There are lots of Guided meditation videos on Youtube and the stats show that a high percentage of guided money meditations are listened to each day around the world.
However if you are british or european and your watching a guided money meditation in dollars there is instantly a conflict because the image does not fit your currency reality.
You will succeed in neutralising your efforts if you think positively about your goal for a few minutes, and have doubts or think about them negatively the rest of the day. So it is important to match your money mantra meditation with the currency you predominatly use every day, otherwise this is poor investment of your time, and is one of the main reasons why you are not getting results.
Meaningful Guided Meditation
Guided Meditation, Visualisation and Miracle Tones stimulate positivity which are essential components to focusing your intentions in a quiet moment to bring about change, bring you clients, bring you business, cashflow and business growth.
No matter your business, startup, not for profit, online business or charity, taking time out to clear your mind and focus on what you want to achieve with a clear vision can be very enlightening.
The brain is still a membrain that needs rest, need oxygen and the right minerals to support it. There is also lots of evidence to support that certain tones when listened to can stimulate deep into the brain. In this Guided Money Meditation, affirmations are powerful wrapped into the solfeggio tones and biennial beats with wads of british pounds tumbling towards you with a little added surprise.
You can watch and listen or just listen to this guided meditation anytime. To help you manifest your goals which will translate into money for your business try this guided money meditation in british pounds for 7 days. Please do not use whilst driving.
We know that most of the UK businesses are gearing up to #OpeningDay this April, A lot of money will be poured into #advertising, its time to gear yourself up to #followup every #Lead automatically without lifting a finger 24/7
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A lot of people refer to them as Influencers today but here’s a little secret that can help you raise your status or even attract funding to help you successfully grow your business, So what’s the secret? find and leverage mentors and advisors.
You might think this is odd and not doable, but think about it, this is a win win senerio.
So, who or what are advisors?
Advisors are successful people that you respect and that agree to help your company. Advisors are generally successful and/or retired executives, business owners, service providers, professors, or others that could help your business.
Advisors generally will not cost you any money (you don’t pay them), although I do recommend giving them stock options to incentivise them to contribute as much as possible. But one of the benefits to them is that they also need referrals and new clients.
Getting advisors is not a requirement for raising money, but they have multiple benefits as follows:
Practice: if you can’t successfully pitch an advisor to invest time in your business, then you’re not going to successfully pitch anyone to invest money in your business. So, practice your pitch on prospective advisors first, and use that practice to perfect it.
Connectionsto capital and more: as successful individuals, advisors often have the ability to invest directly in your company; and/or they tend to have large, high quality networks of individuals they can introduce you to. Likewise the right mentors and advisors can connect you with key strategic partners, employees and customers.
Credibility: having quality advisors gives your company instant credibility in the eyes of investors, partners, customers, etc., can build enormous credibility.
Operational success: Having Advisors with whom you can discuss key business matters as you grow your venture will help ensure you make the right decisions, particularly if they have encountered and dealt with the same challenges already in their careers.
Business Planning & Finance
We assist startups or established businesses to generate a business plan and projections. We then help them to raise any finaces to help setup or expand their business.
It’s hard to be excited when talking about today’s coronavirus pandemic, when millions of people have been infected.
However, various research around the UK like GoDaddy shows the coronavirus pandemic has been a massive boon to entrepreneurship. And this could help our economy both recover and thrive for years to come.
But while jobs have suffered, new micro business startups have skyrocketed.
The government commendably offered a number of startups and etablished busiesses a lifeline at the peak of the crisis, but despite the slowly improving funding picture, we are now starting to see the pent-up effect of the pandemic on UK businesses.
Government support has artificially kept companies afloat and delayed the true impact. but with the second lockdown to non essential businesses we are only now starting to see more severe damage to UK businesses that could puts the survival of an entire bricks and mortar business generation of innovative companies at risk.
Will the Start Up Trends in 2020 continue through 2021?
A survey of 1,000 GoDaddy customers found 15 per cent of new UK entrepreneurs had made the leap due to job loss or furlough
UK workers have been turning to starting their own companies in unprecedented numbers as fears over job security have spurred a new wave of entrepreneurs.
The “State of the Nation” review, compiled by the group GoDaddy, showed there had been a 14 per cent increase in micro-businesses, start-ups with nine or fewer employees. They have experienced a 62 per cent increase in new UK customers and this is only one domain provider.
How many people actually have any desire at all to become the start ups of tomorrow?
There are, on average, 18,100 searches per month in Google UK for “how to start a business” based on data from kwfinder.com
This has surged in recent months with Google Trends predicting that January 2020 will demonstrate the highest number of searches since records began in 2004 for this query in the UK (by quite some way)
So what’s are we witnessing happening?
We are witnessing a few interesting events. “First, we are seeing unemployed workers starting their own businesses. Realising they need to be responsible for their own financial destinies, these micro entrepreneurs are opting out of the traditional workforce to start their own companies. Secondly, we are seeing virtual employees launching their own businesses.”
With 96 per cent of all UK enterprises identified as “micro-businesses” this sector could play a key role supporting an economic recovery.
With regards to the latter trend, Diane says “I think the mindset for many has become ‘if I’m going to ditch the office, why not ditch the boss too?” And many new work-from-home employees have now gained one to three hours per day as their commutes have been eliminated. Some have been using this time to develop their business plans and launch their own online companies.”
The GoDaddy Figures also revealed encouraging levels of confidence and resilience – 85 per cent were confident that their businesses would continue, with third of these expecting their businesses to thrive.
This was supported by 70 per cent who believed their businesses would recover fully within 12 months.
This was despite 38 per cent of the UK’s smallest businesses being forced to close on temporarily, and almost three-quarters having lost revenue (72 per cent), due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Micro-businesses also still planned to keep up business spending, with 29 per cent confirming that they would continue to invest in their ventures and one in 10 planning to invest more in the companies over the next three to five years
“Government initiatives alone are not sufficient to support startups most in need of funding and cashflow in the current economic climate. It’s possibly the growth of micro businesses that will provide the innovation and jobs that will drive the UK’s economic recovery, and they need urgent support.”
So How Can We Help and What is our Advice?
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So if your thinking of setting up a online business, learn everything you need to know Plan to succeed so you don’t end up in the online business startup graveyard.
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About Diane Shawe
Diane Shawe is author of several books on Amazon and Google Books.
The traditional belief that we must prepare ourselves to be ‘employable’ is under threat. The counter argument encourages us to ‘gear up’ for earning our own money, rather than seeing income as someone else’s responsibility. Get your copy today. http://amzn.to/3945Njd
Running a blog requires planning and it’s hard work, but with hard work comes results. I gained 1k blog followers in 2 months, and today I’m going to share some of the steps I took to achieved this. I truly did not expect to gain 1k followers in 2 months, but this is what happens when we have self doubt and don’t take action.
But I was thinking back to when I started blogging in September 2010 it was easier than because blogging was just getting popular. Even though, I still would have really appreciated a post like this. As some sort of motivation and guidance.
If you are here because you think I’m going to give you some secret code that gives you those followers overnight, you are looking in the wrong place. This happened from hard work and dedication and nothing more. It wont happen overnight and it didn’t for me as you can see, I have been blogging a long time. The tips I share are the things I did to make this happen. It’s up to you to take action and put in the hard work to see the results.
CONSISTENCY IS REALLY IMPORTANT
I talk often about consistency, but that’s because I want to stress how important it is. Having a blogging schedule and sticking to it something that helped me to see my audience grow. I post anywhere from five, six or seven times a week. Thats a lot of content. As I said in the intro, its not easy and it wont ever be easy being consistent.
I constantly feel like I am writing and scheduling content. I will touch on social media a few points down but you should also be consistent with Social media too. Any platform that you can use to spread awareness for your blog you should use. Utilise it if it’s there.
TRY INTERACTING WITH OTHER BLOGGERS
One of the most important things to do if you are part of the blogging community is interaction. You won’t ever grow if you don’t interact and support others. When I first started in 2010 blogging was just getting popular, so getting followers was easier, but with the growth of social media and ‘snippet’ such as twitter attracting followers have become more competitive, so thing such as ‘Tasty Headers’ to attract that click is all the more important. Its a two way street blog writer want new folowers, interesting topics to re-tweet so they can gain more followers also.
Yes, you will get traffic to your site from people other than bloggers but you need that blogging community behind you in order for your blog to be successful.
HOW DOES SOCIAL MEDIA HELP?
Instagram, Twitter and Facebook are the main places where a lot of my social media traffic comes from. Pinterest and TiKTok is another social media platform that is great to gain traffic to your blog. To reach a professional audience Linkedin is also a very good patform.
A shoutout for Youtube, if you can get over 1000 followers, you are given a community page were you can post your blog links.
Linking into the point I made about consistency, its just as important to be consistent on your social media pages too.
UPGRADING MY WORDPRESS PLAN
About a 9 month into rebranding my blog I decided to upgrade my WordPress plan to a premium plan. This was probably one of the best things I could have done, it gave me access to be able to add ads onto my blog and it gave me access to premium themes. The premium plan is worth it for people who have just started but want to take their blog further.
I am still decided whether to upgrade to the WordPress business plan. This will allow me to take my blogging to the next level. With the business plan it allows you to download and use plug ins, such as Yoast SEO. Which is a tool that tells you how you can improve your posts to help with google ranking. Which in turn helps with traffic and followers.
Its something you should consider but make sure you can afford it, especially if you are wanting to take your blogging more serious and grow your following.
RELATABLE CONTENT IS KING
An important thing to remember when wanting to grow your following is posting relatable content. Do your research and see what’s going on in the world and what people are searching for, and then blog about it. A lot of the time I write about what I’m going through. I wont necessarily say on the post that its from personal experience or something I am struggling with at the time, but that’s what I do. There are ideas and inspiration all around us.
THERE IS NO PROBLEM IN BROADENING YOUR BLOG NICHE
Being vulnerable goes a long way with readers. They are able to connect with you on such a deeper level if they know you are being open with them.
I’ve had many conversations with other bloggers about this, but I think it’s so important that as bloggers we are also flexible in what we write about. I think it’s so great having a blog niche, but don’t be scared to step out of it every once and a while. Don’t stress about writing something different, you don’t know how your readers will receive it unless you just do it. You will note from my blog that I cover a wide variety of topics.
These are just a few things I have done to grow my following. Please remember that these things worked for me. I hope they help you too!
Thank you for 1k followers I want to take some time at the end of this post to thank you for 1 thousand followers. Rock on for the next 1000
I have been in inundated with message’s through my phone and emails that for instance Covid-19 truthers believe that 5G technology is dialing up the disease. That they are (the government killing off small businesses) trying to control us.
I became curious to find out if other conspiracy theories existed for previous pandemics and who were more gullible to them. I discovered that more than a century ago, telegraph poles and other mysterious causes were blamed for influenza. And each gave rise to dubious cures.
I also discovered that Alex Knapton had researched and written an extensive and factual article on the topic recently and I invite you to read it.
Science I write about the future of science, technology, and culture. GETTY IMAGES
As the Covid-19 pandemic swept the globe in early 2020, a conspiracy theory about the disease went viral on social media: The genesis of the illness, proponents claim, was not the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. Instead, this pandemic was actually caused by the introduction of 5G broadband, and radiation from cell towers equipped with the technology is the real culprit.
It doesn’t take Dr. Fauci to know that conspiracy theories have always been a predictable symptom of pandemics. More than a century ago, the truthers of the day tried to blame a deadly influenza outbreak on a similar technological innovation.
On January 31, 1890, the European edition of the New York Herald ran an item suggesting that the electric light was somehow responsible for a global influenza outbreak. After all, “the disease has raged chiefly in towns where the electric light is in common use,” the article noted, and went on to note that the disease “has everywhere attacked telegraph employees.
The illness in question was the first modern influenza pandemic, known as the Russian flu or “La Grippe.” The disease likely emerged somewhere in the Russian Empire in 1889 and quickly spread around the world in successive waves. It took only four months to hit every part of the globe, with the United States seeing its peak in January 1890. More than a million people (of the 1.5 billion on earth) were killed worldwide in that first wave.
The Russian flu was in part a consequence of a newly globalized world. Railroads and transoceanic steamships were perfect conduits for the disease, accelerating its growth across countries and continents. As with Covid-19, the earlier pandemic also caused a spread of misinformation, conspiracies and countless dubious therapies. Instead of the internet, these ideas were promulgated by newspaper and telegraph—but the impact was similar.
“People have an epistemic need to know the truth and they also have an existential need to feel safe,” says Dr. Karen Douglas, a researcher who studies the psychology of conspiracy theories. “In times of crisis, these needs are unmet so conspiracy theories can seem appealing.”
When reports of the Russian flu first emerged, medical science was in the middle of a major transition. The early 19th century was dominated by what’s known as “miasma theory”—the idea that diseases spread through the inhalation of “bad air” from rotting matter. By the mid-19th century, though, the germ theory of disease— what we now understand as the idea that illness is caused by microbes—became increasingly popular, though miasma proponents persisted even into the early 20th century.
Even with the advances in medicine by 1889, the causes of the Russian flu pandemic were still unknown. While scientists such as Edward Jenner and Louis Pasteur had already developed vaccines to protect against and prevent diseases, the discovery of the first virus was still three years away. And it wasn’t until the early 1900s that viruses capable of infecting humans would be discovered. That the Russian flu and the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918 were caused by influenza viruses wouldn’t be definitively determined until 1933.
This vital knowledge gap in 1889 meant that doctors and researchers were at a loss to explain the new illness spreading around the world. Contemporary newspaper accounts chronicled the many and varied theories that doctors at the time had about the outbreak. One account in The Boston Globe noted its similarities to dengue fever. An article in the New York Times NYTcompared it to the disease that felled President William Henry Harrison in 1841. Such uncertainty about the nature of influenza helped fuel conspiracy theories and wild speculation about its causes.
The proto-trutherism from the Russian flu has close parallels in today’s pandemic. Although scientists know quite a bit about the novel coronavirus causing Covid-19, that hasn’t stopped speculation about its origins. One prominent conspiracy theory is that the virus was deliberately bioengineered in a lab to cause the pandemic. Depending on which theory you believe, the culprits behind Covid-19 range from the Chinese government to the U.S. government to Microsoft MSFT cofounder Bill Gates. The coronavirus behind this pandemic almost certainly naturally evolved—there is already considerable genetic evidence pointing to it—but that doesn’t halt the rampant speculation.
“This is a classic example of a phenomenon in conspiracy theory research that people perceive patterns that are impossible, or at best very unlikely,” says Dr. Douglas. “People essentially ‘join the dots’ when connections shouldn’t be made. When there is so much information going around, and pieces of information often contradict each other, people are more likely to see these illusory patterns.”
While there weren’t any whispers about genetic engineering in the 1890s (after all, DNA itself wouldn’t be discovered for nearly 70 years), that didn’t stop more fantastical theories about the origin of the Russian flu from infecting the public. In addition to the idea that telegraph poles or electricity might be responsible for the spread of the disease, Dr. William Gentry of Chicago caught the attention of newspapers by claiming he had isolated the microbes that caused the pandemic.
The source of these microbes, Dr. Gentry claimed, was stardust passing through the Earth’s atmosphere at regular 16- to 17-year intervals. Other physicians soberly rejected Dr. Gentry’s idea—preferring instead to consider the role of volcanic dust, bird migrations or other equally misguided causes.
This lack of understanding about the new deadly strain of flu left doctors perplexed as to the best way to treat it. An 1889 article in The Lancet conceded that “our want of complete knowledge of the nature of the disease renders it difficult to suggest measures of prophylaxis other than the uniform observance of general hygienic rules.” (That’s another sobering parallel to today’s pandemic—as of now, the only approved therapy for Covid-19 is remdesivir, which has been granted an emergency use authorization by the FDA thanks to clinical trial findings showing it can reduce hospital stays.)
In the absence of science-based treatments for the Russian flu, many dubious therapies flourished—taking advantage of people scared of a disease for which no known treatment existed. This, too, has parallels in today’s pandemic. The FDA has sent multiple warnings out to a variety of companies pushing specious cures, ranging from herbal teas to colloidal silver solutions to ingesting detergent.
Newspaper advertisements from the 19th century similarly tout a number of “cures” for the Russian flu. Castor oil was a treatment pushed by at least one newspaper, and other protocols included a bronchial inhaler and an electric battery (which promised to improve eyesight, to boot.) Even doctors promoted the idea that drinking brandy and eating oysters was the key to staving off infection.
The most famous remedy for the Russian Flu, however, was the carbolic smoke ball. These were manufactured in London and widely advertised. The balls released a “smoke” of finely ground phenol powder (an ingredient commonly used in soaps at the time) that would be inhaled through the nostrils. The company that manufactured this treatment promised that it would prevent customers from catching the Russian flu. And if the product failed, the company promised to recoup its customers £100— or about $13,000 today. In December 1891, Mrs. Elizabeth Carlill purchased one of those products and used it on multiple occasions. Then she succumbed to the epidemic.
Because the carbolic smoke balls failed to work, Carlill and her husband filed a claim with the Carbolic Smoke Ball Company, but it was ignored. In 1892, the couple took their case to court. In the case of Carlill v. Carbolic Smoke Ball Company, the court found that that Mrs. Carlill was entitled to the money and that the Carbolic Smoke Ball Company was in breach of contract for failing to pay her upon submitting the claim. The ruling was a vindication for Mrs. Carlill and the case itself is still cited as precedent throughout common law jurisdictions, including the United States, and is frequently taught in law school classes to this day.
In another parallel with the Covid-19 pandemic, there was also a class of drugs that existed on the border of sound science and wishful thinking. During the 1889 pandemic, quinine, an antimalarial drug that is the antecedent of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine, was promoted by newspapers and doctors as a treatment for the Russian flu. Though many members of the medical establishment appear to have opposed the use of quinine as a treatment for the disease, these warnings went unheeded.
In December 1889, a Boston newspaper chronicled people taking quinine to combat the disease. That same month, an investigative article in the Kansas City Star bemoaned price gouging for quinine pills and noted that demand for them was keeping medicine out of the hands of people suffering from malaria. This has its own parallel today, where there have been multiple reports that excess demand of hydroxychloroquine may cause harm for those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, for which that medication is often prescribed as a treatment.
While studies are still being conducted about the efficacy of these Covid-19 treatments, there is little doubt that these drugs can be highly toxic and several clinical studies bear this out. In one tragic case of desperation, a man in Phoenix died (and his wife was hospitalized) after ingesting a chloroquine derivative intended for use as a fish tank cleaner to prevent the illness.
That tragedy also has an unfortunate parallel in the Russian flu. Newspapers in January 1891 reported at least two instances in which families suffering from the Russian flu mistakenly took the poison strychnine, thinking they were ingesting quinine. Several of them died as a consequence.
An unhealthy dose of misinformation, conspiracy theories and the embrace of dubious treatments is quite common during epidemics and pandemics, says Dr. Douglas, who adds that the psychology around them is intertwined. “Research suggests that people who believe in conspiracy theories are more likely to turn to alternative remedies and distrust mainstream medicine.”
More alarming, the spread of misinformation and the lack of trust in scientific evidence has the potential to cause real harm. Turning to untested treatments can lead people away from getting the care they need, exposing them to greater risk. And while some alternatives, such as drinking herbal teas, are relatively harmless, others are not. Colloidal silver, for example, which the FDA has warned against, can cause permanent skin discoloration and make it difficult for your body to absorb medicines, including antibiotics.
Occasionally, the spread of conspiracy theories can cause actual harm as well. In the United Kingdom, where the idea that 5G causes Covid-19 has taken a firm hold in a significant segment of the population, there have been dozens of attacks on telecom towers. While no one has actually been killed yet, it’s not for lack of trying—the UK conspiracy theorists are hiding razor blades in anti-5G posters on telephone poles and threatening harm to people who work on those cell towers.
Even as companies are racing to develop a vaccine for Covid-19, conspiracy theorists may prevent people from taking them. Anti-vaxxer activists have pounced on Covid-19, protesting against vaccine development efforts and teaming with protesters fed up with stay-at-home orders. “Experimental research also shows that exposure to conspiracy theories increases vaccine hesitancy,” says Dr. Douglas. And polling bears that out: In a recent poll, 1 in 5 Americans said they would not take a vaccine for the coronavirus if it became available.
Perhaps the most insidious conspiracy theory about Covid-19 is one that seems more innocuous—the simple downplaying of the harms of the disease. You don’t have to go deep into Facebook or Twitter to find speculation that Covid-19 fears are overblown. Similarly, there are numerous opinion pieces and TV segments devoted to the idea that the economic damage from stay-at-home orders causes more harm than the disease itself.
“This is very common because it allows people to pretend that nothing is wrong and they can get on with their lives,” Dr. Douglas says. “This is an example of motivated reasoning. People believe what they want to believe.”
Once again, there is a historic precedent in the Russian flu pandemic. In an article about the illness in a December edition of The New York Times, it was reported that while the disease was spreading, it was mostly harmless. “There is nothing fatal about the universal cold,” wrote the author.
By time the epidemic subsided a few months later, the Russian flu had claimed the lives of more than 2,500 New Yorkers, making it the hardest hit city in the United States.