Deliberately paying attention to symptoms seems to help me avoid exacerbating them. For example, I had worse pain problems in the first year that I was sick, and I tended to ignore it while focusing on whatever I was doing. When doing mindfulness meditation (which very deliberately focuses on sensations), I realized that 1) my muscles were hurting and 2) that pain was causing me tense them, which would cause more pain. When I realized what was happening, I could relax the muscles, thus reducing the pain. Hence my symptoms improve noticeably as a result of focusing on them, and get worse if I'm not paying attention to them. PEM and OI work very much the same way. The more self-aware I am, the better I can take steps to minimize the impact of them. I certainly don't fixate on my symptoms, but I do listen to them. Disregarding and denying symptoms is, I think, mentally unhealthy in any case, and especially likely to result in increased disability in ME/CFS patients.