From Bedbugs, With Love.

09 Jan

Sleep tight…
Hope the bedbugs don’t bite…

I’m very sure a lot of us have used those lines to bid our loved ones goodnight. On the other hand, some of us have been exposed to the menace of bedbug bites; which include reddish welts on our skin at the point of the bite and bloody bed sheets. Indeed, when we think of bedbugs, all we may remember is blood sucking pests. And we all hate pests. But, did you know we can learn from the bedbug? Here are some bits and bites you may want to learn from:

Sit tight….
And I hope the bedbugs don’t bite…

Bedbugs develop through a gradual process involving seven stages, each stage requiring a blood feed to proceed. If there’s an animal that knows about gradual milestones, it has to be the bedbug. What do we learn from this? Do you know the importance of taking short measurable steps especially when you want to learn something new or ditch a bad habit?

Psychologists and counselors have published various papers on using reinforced positive behavior as well as Neuro- Associative Conditioning (NAC) to break difficult habits/ addictions. For instance, if you want lose some weight by dropping high calorie foods and running 55km every week; you can break it down into small bits of achievable steps and rewarding yourself with a trophy at the end of each step.

I take myself out to see a movie once every two months if I keep of sugar and its derivatives; today I’m ten months sober. This little gesture helped to encourage me via positive reinforcement. If we import this characteristic into our daily life, just like the bedbug, in tiny but sure steps, we shall achieve our set goal(s) eventually.

If you want to quit smoking or drinking , you could drop every Naira you would have blown on cigarettes/alcohol in a piggy bank. What you get at the end of the week would surely ginger you to do more.

As far as endurance and resilience goes, I can’t think of anything that beats the bedbug. At a length of just a quarter of an inch, these insects can survive in extreme conditions with just a third of its weight left. They can go for a year without food, and survive for up to five days in temperate conditions nearing -100C! Just imagine if humans could do that naturally, we would be able to spread and live in places like Alaska, Antarctica and The Himalayas thus reducing the current highly expanding population density. This will also abate our resource distribution problem. But we can copy the resilient bedbug.  Imagine how many more dreams would come true as humans won’t be giving up too easily as they seem to be accustomed to, students would do better at school, men would be more patient, service delivery would improve, we would calm enough at all times to see the importance of others and perhaps our world would be a perpetual utopia.

More still, this characteristic of the bedbug also demonstrates the belief in the phrase: no condition is permanent. This is something a lot of us need to emulate knowing fully well that change is the only constant in nature. Besides, with life there’s hope and by virtue of what we are- human beings- we only live and hope for better days; so why despair? Be resilient like the bedbug!

Do we still remember telepaths from the popular action fiction comic series- XMEN, Jean Grey and Prof Charles Xavier? They are able to read the most subtle thoughts of those around them, communicate with those around them at a more subliminal level. Bedbugs have a similar technology though theirs involve the use of pheromones to sense mates and breeding sites as well as carbon dioxide receptors to sense other living warm blooded animals which provide their main source of food (blood), wherever they are domiciled. Please find solace in the fact our case is not hopeless as we also posses the same pheromone receptors. We use it to sense our lover within a common enclosed space without seeing them amongst other quite subtle things.

But then there’s more, as I’m quite convinced we can do more to exploit these latent gifts. I’m not asking you to develop ESP (extra sensory perception) or become a telepathic mutant; all I’m saying is we can be quite as perceptive as the bedbug of the numerous pertinent and subtle stimulus in our environment. This will help our communication become a lot better which will translate to healthier and more wholesome relationships. With this singular benefit, we can safely assume that the utopia we all dream off ain’t so far after all.

I hope the bedbugs have been accommodating enough so far by lending us some of their characteristics for us to pick a few lessons from. I sure have learnt a lot and my skin is welts free. Until next time, let’s be as resilient as the bedbug. I am @chika365 on twitter. See you soon.

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Posted by on January 9, 2013 in General


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