Some of us are like ostriches. We prefer not to know things that will be painful or frightening. We'd rather stick our heads in the sand and pretend it's not happening, or continue to hope it won't, rather than face it head on.

Or maybe we're really lucky and we're blissfully unaware that our lives are about to explode. We've really got no idea that anything dark and nasty is lurking just round the corner. And then suddenly, there it is, in your face and reeking of disaster.

When explosive situations arise and our lives are turned upside down, often we'll say we didn't see it coming. But the truth is there are usually signs we chose not to notice. Or we made decisions that were really not brilliant. And here it is, some weeks, months or perhaps even years later, and now we have to clean up the fallout from those choices.

As a psychic and medium, throughout my life I've heard people tell me they're afraid to have a reading because of what they might find out. They don't understand that if the potential for a problem is detected, it gives them the opportunity to prevent it or at the very least, to be prepared for it so that they can minimise the difficult bits.

Having a reading is like going to a counsellor, although plenty of people avoid doing that, too. Both are about discovering the potential for problems that can only be reduced or eliminated if you're willing to see what might lie ahead. Otherwise, without prior knowledge, you get slammed in the head with a bag of bricks and your ability to deal with the problem is compromised.

How many times do we hear about people who have worrying symptoms but refuse to get them checked out? We say, "If you catch it early enough, your chances of treatment or cure are so much better than if you leave it!" But still they refuse to go. And what if it's nothing? Wouldn't it be preferable to find that out and stop worrying?

In many diseases, early diagnosis improves the chance of a cure, while ignoring it makes things worse. It's the same with the problems and challenges of life, such as financial troubles, secrets kept by partners, anything that we sweep under the carpet because we don't want to face the ugly truth and deal with it.

Being blissfully unaware isn't all it's cracked up to be. Eventually, the truth comes out and slams you upside the head. Better to be vigilant about the facts of your life, considering and contemplating options, consequences, daring to look at what's really going on. Ignoring or avoiding the truth will only give you less time to figure out a way to put things right.

When you don't know what you're facing, or you fear what you might be facing, it's easy to become nervous or anxious. There's an uneasiness that settles into your bones. It's distracting. It wastes energy. It messes up productivity. You waste time wondering about all the "what-ifs" and sometimes it can be so bad, it affects physical and mental health.

Of course, some things just leave themselves as surprises, no matter how diligent and "on top of things" we might be. We can't always know what's coming, but that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about people who live in denial, those who stick their heads in the sand and refuse to acknowledge what's really happening around them.

Well, not hearing about it isn't going to make it go away. The facts won't change just because you're playing "Let's pretend." You'll just shoot yourself in the foot and have a nasty shock when you reach the point of having to face the truth.

Best to make yourself aware of the realities of your life and circumstances in all areas. Stay on top of the business end of your life. Dare to be honest about the harsh realities in unhealthy relationships, whether they're with a partner, a sibling, a child - anyone. Be brave and look at the state of things in your life. It's the only way to see what needs fixing, and your only chance at happiness.