Why is Keeping a Big Secret Bad for Our Health?

telling and keeping big secret

Keeping a secret isn’t always a bad thing. Sometimes we do it to protect our loved ones, prevent someone from getting their feelings hurt, or because someone simply asked us not to share something personal with others. However, when a secret involves something more than just a minor comment, it can actually have a long-term cost on your health. If you’ve been holding on to something that’s been weighing you down, learn why keeping a big secret is bad for our health and what you can do to help yourself overcome it.

It Can Trigger Serious Anxiety

Keeping a big secret can be a stressful ordeal. When you’re asked to conceal something fairly significant from others, it can cause an enormous amount of personal anxiety for you, especially as you harbour it for a longer duration of time.

It Can Lead to Feelings of Guilt & Shame

Feelings of guilt and shame are also commonly associated with harbouring secrets. Whether it’s personal or for someone else, hiding distressing information can often do more damage to your own wellbeing, especially when it’s laced in guilt.

It Can Feel Downright Exhausting

When you’re involved in a secret, it can also end up feeling exhausting when you’re continually trying to make calculated steps to conceal it. Having conversations with others and side-sweeping certain questions or comments is never an enjoyable way to live. Plus, it can hinder your self-esteem greatly.

It Can Impact Your Physical Health

Sometimes, when the burden becomes too great, it can begin to show in more physical ways. Decreased energy, appetite, and motivation can contribute to poor physical health. It can increase blood pressure, lower your immune system, and heighten your overall risk for illness.

How Can You Solve This?

The obvious solution is the only answer — tell someone. But, offloading this burden doesn’t mean you need to share it with the world. Often, being able to just confide in someone who’s removed from the situation can be enough to drastically lessen that weight on your shoulders and give you more room to breathe. Choose someone you know who is calm, understanding, and is willing to listen with an open heart.

At Ottawa Counselling, we’re here to listen without judgement and offer the support and the counselling you need. Reach out to us today.