I don't know about you, but every time I enter the space of social media as of late, I feel worse for it afterward. There is such an intense amount of information, opinions, data, graphs, and stories that at some point it all just begins to swirl into a cacophony of noise and overwhelm and chaos. It's no wonder 64% of Americans are reporting worsened mental health.
I teach people how to cultivate and maintain a healthy mindset for a living, and even I feel myself teetering on the edge of the abyss, the drama triangle, the vicious cycle of doom and gloom that comes from the uncertainty we're currently dealing with.
Social media is enticing, captivating, and sadly addicting to our neurochemistry. Certain parts of the human brain LOVE things that are shocking, gross, and disturbing. These are the parts of the brain that activate and light up when we witness or experience drama or chaos. It's why traffic bottles up for miles even after the bulk of a car wreck has been cleared. We have this impulse to slow down and stare at the wreckage and the horror.
Knowledge is power and knowing that my beautiful brain is drawn to the drama, I know I need to pause, take a series of deep breaths, and tell myself this...
"Betsy, you are at choice here. You get to stand guard at the door of your own mind. Right now you are choosing to get sucked into chaos and madness. Every time you choose to spend hours surfing other peoples' Facebook posts, watching documentaries, and consuming article upon article of news media, you are making choices. And when you're done...what is the end result? You feel bad and powerless and ask yourself questions like, 'why bother?' You may not have control over the macro swirl, but you do have control of yourself. And you are responsible for recognizing when it's time to tune the macro world out and tune in to the present moment. Tune into what's true and what's happening right here, right now, right in front of you. Tune into your own heart, tune into nature, tune into what lights up the prefrontal cortex of your brain and create rather than consume. The answers you seek will not come from 'out there.' They will be found from within."
With enough practice of awareness, observation of self, repetition and persistence of supportive self-talk, I find myself able to stay on the edge of the abyss, look down into, and not go there.
From this state....I FEEL better, I behave better, and I actually have energy to offer and contribute more of the power and truth of who I really am through creation of positive messages.
So this weekend, I invite you to stand guard at the door of your mind. Practice presence. Practice patience with yourself. Give yourself permission to tune out what is no longer serving you and tune into what is. No one else has the power to do this for you except you.
Live your Light,
Fulfillionaire Facilitator, Educational Psychologist, Inspirational Speaker