What are you reading? What’s influencing your state of mind? What are you allowing into your life?
I was visiting a friend a few months ago. She seemed distracted and not altogether happy. After a little while I asked her what was bothering her? She told me that that morning she had gotten up in a great mood and with her morning cup of coffee, she had started to browse Facebook. She had seen a post from a ‘friend’ that had really disturbed her.
She told me that this friend, someone she actually knows in real life, sends very graphic and very disturbing posts about all kinds of abuse; children, animals, women. She said that she likes to know what’s going on in the world but this had really upset her and made her feel quite depressed.
It really struck a chord with me.
How often we get concerned with what our kids are exposed to on television and the internet, yet we don’t extend that concern to ourselves.
It reminded me of a wonderful passage from the book ‘Peace is Every Step’ by Thich Nhat Hanh. He writes…
‘Watching a bad TV program, we become the TV program. We are what we feel and perceive….We can be anything we want, so why do we open our windows to bad TV programs made by sensationalist producers in search of easy money, programs that make our hearts pound, our fists tighten, and leave us exhausted? Who allows such TV programs to be made and seen by even the very young? We do! We are too undemanding, too ready to watch whatever is on the screen, too lonely, lazy , or bored to create our own lives. We turn on the TV and leave it on, allowing someone else to guide us, shape us, and destroy us. Losing ourselves in this way is leaving our fate in the hands of other who may not be acting responsibly. We must be aware of which programs do harm to our nervous systems, minds, and hearts, and which programs benefit us.’
Of course this is not just about TV (I have to admit I’m quite addicted to ‘Downton Abbey’ these days, this series completely caught my attention, imagination, I’m loving it!).
It’s about the amount of absolute drivel we allow into our lives through social media, the internet and all the rest. It’s the images we casually scan and get used to seeing. Even the careless conversations that can lead us to harm, the type of harm that slowly erodes our minds and hearts.
You know it’s all about the stories. What stories do you listen to and what ones do you tell?
Remember, your stories create your reality. Not just the ones you tell, but the ones you hear and ultimately live by.
It’s very simple.
You know what you need. You know what is right for you.
It’s just like how you feel better when you eat healthy food. It’s the same as you can tell when someone is telling the truth. It’s the authenticity that we can smell a mile away.
It’s all about intentional, mindful story awareness.
Tell the story that nurtures your mind and heart.
Be that story.