As I get older, it’s obvious that I can’t get away with the same unhealthy diet as I did when I was younger. I’m honestly not sure if all of my food allergies slowly progressed or if I was just slow at reading the writing on the wall but, in an effort to make peace with my body, I’ve made changes. Hey, it’s all I got.
Recently, I’ve started leaving my television on a channel that runs CSI, The Closer and Law & Order nonstop. And, while I enjoy a good murder mystery, I think I’ve reached my limit. Case in point, just last night, I ran, ducked and dodged all sorts of unsavory critters while sleeping. Talk about being tired this morning.
But this isn’t normal for me. My normal habit is to watch the news in the mornings for traffic updates and then maybe once or twice a week I’ll find myself flipping channels. I have a few shows that I enjoy watching but I don’t care enough about them to memorize what time they come on. Since spooky dreams aren’t the norm for me, it didn’t take long to figure out the root cause.
Much like my body said ‘enough’ concerning certain foods, my psyche is saying the same about my increased intake of death. Thinking back to 9/11, I recall studies being done analyzing the emotional effects such a tragic event had our nation. In Charting the Emotions of 9/11; Minute by Minute on Time.com I read “One nationwide study in the months following the attacks found that 4% of Americans were suffering from 9/11-related post traumatic stress disorder, including a whopping 11.2% of New Yorkers.” Of these emotions were sadness, anger and anxiety. Amazing.
So, just like our bodies have an expiration date on how long it can tolerate certain foods, our emotions can’t be left suspended in all the chaos and confusion of the world. Grant it, my scary dreams could be considered on the low-end of the spectrum. However, if I started accusing everyone around me of some form of injustice, obsessing over all the possible dangers of being out at night and adding additional deadbolts to my door, you might suggest that I stop watching so much television.
While it’s true we can’t live in this world with our eyes closed, we can control how much negative information we let in. Mud slinging politics, racism and a good ole dose of crime coupled with whatever blood, gore and suspense we enjoy eventually takes its toll. And, this applies to what we talk about, watch on television and read. We can’t control all the land outside us but we have total control of the few square inches we occupy.
In a world of Deepak Chopra, Louise L. Hay, Oprah, Tony Robbins, Brian Tracey and great books by Napoleon Hill, Norman Vincent Peale and Earl Nightingale, we have enough positive to counteract all the negative. This doesn’t include all the hometown heroes, those that have made a tremendous impact on society without a single mention on the 6 o’clock news. Those that have dedicated their lives to making the world a better place.
Be intentional about how much of anything you’re letting in. Make it a habit to check your pulse. Every mood swing isn’t PMS, I promise. Question when things aren’t quite right and then hold yourself accountable for making whatever small changes you need to make. Sometimes, those closest to you can pick up on it faster than you can. As for me, I’m turn off the tube for a little bit. Heck, I’m sleepy.