Takeaway #10 is short and sweet, and it’s a gentle reminder that you are what you consume, so you need to be consuming good things daily!
This C. S. Lewis quote has stayed with me ever since I read it… “Every time you make a choice you are turning the central part of you, the part of you that chooses, into something a little different than it was before. And taking your life as a whole, with all your innumerable choices, all your life long you are slowly turning this central thing into a heavenly creature or a hellish creature: either into a creature that is in harmony with God, and with other creatures, and with itself, or else into one that is in a state of war and hatred with God, and with its fellow creatures, and with itself. To be the one kind of creature is heaven: that is, it is joy and peace and knowledge and power. To be the other means madness, horror, idiocy, rage, impotence, and eternal loneliness. Each of us at each moment is progressing to the one state of the other.”
While he puts it quite dramatically (although I kind of love it haha), it’s a reminder to me that I don’t really stay neutral… I’m constantly growing and changing as a person, for better or for worse. Just like with your body, your mind needs to be fed daily, and what you feed it eventually comes out. Our choices are a reflection of our thinking, and if that’s not healthy, our choices won’t be either.
We’re bombarded all day every day with ideas, values, news, other people’s thoughts and opinions, and also just like with your body, you are what you consume most of the time. It’s ok to have junk food here and there, it’s ok to miss a workout here and there, but in order to be fit and healthy, you have to regularly be putting in good food and strengthening your body. You need to make sure more of what your mind is consuming is fueling positive, healthy thinking. That you’re taking time to reflect, to learn, to grow. When you don’t you start turning into what you are consuming.
This year, I really paid attention to what I was consuming and how it affected me.., I’ve seen such a difference from consistently prioritizing reflecting, gratitude journaling, reading, listening to podcasts, and talking about what I’m learning with my safe people & supports. I knew in the past it was important to put the good in, but this year, I realized how significantly the longer I started to slack, I more I saw it and felt it.
And honestly, these practices are self-care/mental health things that sometimes take opposite action (simply explained, a behavioral therapy technique where you do the opposite of what you feel like doing, because you know it will flip you from continuing down a negative path to starting on a positive one), because of course I have times and days where I just don’t feel like doing them. Especially reading, I enjoy it but me and sitting still don’t mesh well much unless I’m sleeping haha! But our feelings aren’t always our friend, and that’s where self-awareness and true self-care step in.
If you did an audit of what you’re consuming, would it be aligned with your values, where you want to go in life, and who you want to be? What changes can you make to shift more of what you’re consuming to be something that helps you grow and think positively? Maybe turning of post notifications for certain accounts, muting others, listening to podcasts instead of music sometimes, or taking some time to read, reflect and journal in the AM instead of scroll social media?
Whatever it is, be gentle with yourself as you implement it, and if you’re struggling for good things to consume, here’s some that have helped me:
@mindfulmft, @stevenfurtick, @jayshetty, @morganharpernichols, @garyvee, @msrachelhollis, @drhenrycloud, @edmylett, @steven, @allymisslove, @doc_amen, @thebirdspapaya, @amandabucci, @sazan
The Next Right Thing
Elevation with Steven Furtick
Kwik Brain with Jim Kwik
The Gary Ver Audio Experience
The Good Life with Stevie & Sazan
The Next Right Thing with Emily P Freeman
Boundaries by Dr. Henry Cloud
Think Like a Monk by Jay Shetty
Girl Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis
Rising Strong by Brené Brown
One tHousand Gifts by Anne Voskamp