How often, while standing in the check-out line at the grocery store, have you come across a magazine cover with a statement such as “5 things you should stop eating today”, “Reduce your risk of heart attack and take the 30 day cleanse today”, or “Stop serving your kids this…”
Marketing, promotional, and social outlets bombard us, across all forms of media every day, with suggestions and approaches to eat healthier, get well faster, and cleanse ourselves or others of the toxins we are putting in our body.
While the spirit of the message, to eat healthier and be well, is meant to be helpful, the underlying messaging can also be another mental toxin you ingest in your mind – Fear.
Once our mind becomes triggered and the nervous system is tapped into our basic instincts, i.e., flight | fight | freeze | submit, can make it very difficult to “think clearly.”
Over time and repetitive exposure to the magazine rack haunting us as well as many other sources of messaging, including friends, family, colleagues, etc., we build up an abundance of mental toxins in our mind.
The influence from online exposure as well as the sophistication of search engines, websites, and the internet has only exacerbated some of our weaknesses. For example, we might give in and click on a headline about a cat rescued while stuck in a tree chasing a squirrel. After that, we resume looking at other news. Although, we also start to see more related cat rescue headlines. More squirrel headlines. And inevitably, next time you are searching for something to buy you are receiving recommendations about cat t-shirts, etc.
While many individuals, families, and friends focus their efforts on the food, they are putting in their bodies, there is an additional component that may be equally as important. The intentional, focus, and filtering around what you expose your mind to.
Am I suggesting you close your eyes, count 3-2-1, and it will all go away? Nope...
What I am suggesting is that you begin to bring awareness to how many mental toxins you are exposing yourself to and formulate a plan to minimize the frequency or magnitude being exposed to.
Examples of mental toxins:
Unless you hide out in a dark cave in a far-off land, or have the magic ability to quiet your mind, it is very challenging to limit what we expose ourselves to.
On the other hand, if you are feeling “off” and can’t figure out what it is. Consider the last time you checked in with yourself, your mind, your emotions? You might be full of emotional toxins and need a cleanse.
Start by investigating what you are exposing all your senses to. Bring awareness to the stimulation you are exposed to as well as contributing to. Then, take the time to cleanse yourself of as many emotional toxins as you can.
All the while, be kind to yourself, this is not about beating yourself up, although be as honest as you can be.
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