We have heard so many studies regarding the bugs and viruses that can be contracted by travelling on public transport, even studies that conclude that you are less likely to contract an illness if you shake hands less often and in turn you may actually live longer.
I guess there is a statistical and logical argument for this and in this day and age we are led to believe that there are more superbugs out there than ever before. I dont particularly want to get into discussing biological and physiological arguments in this article, however what i will say is that the human body has genetically developed considerably in the last 30 years to cope better with the regular colds and flus which are all so common in our society. I however want to turn this argument on its head and speak of the health benefits of public transport.
We are a race of social beings our genetics are far to deeply ingrained with the social gene that it is very difficult to deny. Many people would like to admit that they are not socially apt or even handle social circles all that well and on some occasions there is a valid psychological reason beyond self conditioning that prevails.
What I can categorically say is that people choose not to be social for fear of rejection and misinterpretation. our in built fear mechanism will try to protect us under no uncertain circumstances will it allow us to open and be harmed. This natural instinctive reaction has developed over thousands of years, where communities have grown and become more self dependant. communities form within communities and they themselves become more secular and our social circle decreases and decreases until we come to a point where we only have around 2-3 people in our immediate community. Compared with the past of around only 100 years this has drastically changed, the result is a more independent less socially reliant community of individuals who can be quite self-sufficient.
There are many things evolving around us which is difficult to turn back the time however i strongly believe we can reeducate our social side very easily by doing a few simple things. the aim is to lower our barriers and remove some of the protective layer which we shroud ourselves in to remain socially inert to certain circumstances.
I propose where possible and practical everyone should start to use public transport a little more often,]. I can hear those of you already saying “but i use the underground/metro everyday” yes you do but you wrap yourself up in a cloak of steel, choosing to interact with your phone instead of interacting with those around you.
When travelling by public transport you are given an opportunity to interact, it may be a smile a hello or even a sorry or excuse me, however you allow your self to be open to interaction which is good for your health.
There have been numerous studies proving that social interaction and relationships can actually improve your health and lead to a longer life. I say drop those barriers and push yourself to interact or at least allow yourself to be part of the social public transport community. People like you and me can actually make a difference to others loves and make travelling by public transport and enjoyable and serotonin releasing experience.
Smile and be the true you. X