I am a firm believer that a slap in the face is a good thing. Well, figuratively speaking that is. Everyone needs one once in a while. I welcome them myself.
What I'm talking about is that sudden, harsh realization, that lightbulb moment when we see clearly. So clearly that the message that slapped us causes us to take action and take it soon. In so many ways we should take action sooner than later but everything from our commitments in life, work, school, family, you name it cause us to procrastinate. (Procrastinate is about my most unfavorite word.)
The known behavior regarding health is that for most people to change their lifestyle there has to be a drastic life-threatening event such as a heart attack. So many folks will ignore every warning sign and deny that their actions are putting them on a trajectory heading to the bullseye on the disaster target.
Today, in my humble opinion there are a multitude of well placed disaster targets in every direction. Look anywhere and you will see them. Let's start with food. What are my food options? We know we need to eat. What are you going to eat? Hmmm, fast convenience. Fast food! Once in a while - ok. (My definition of once in a while by the way is - 1-2 x per month.) Consume fast food to often and you will pickle your insides and take in so many unneeded calories that you will alter your body mass in an unfavorable way.
While poor food choice intake can represent a hitting a disaster target in the physical sense I believe that listening or consuming to much media can represent a psychological disaster target. Sure there is great journalism somewhere, but most of it is packaged to evoke a reaction or support a narrow viewpoint that makes folks feel as though someone else understands your particular point of view. In a quick sample of news media, I see and hear so many stories where negativity thrives. Check this yourself. When you watch the news how does your stomach feel? What is the expression on your face? These seemingly simple things can tell you a lot, but you have to be objective and a bit self-analytical.
What can you do about all this? Well, as I told a group of my regular athletes who I was training this morning at 6AM who swim in my masters swimming workout. 1) Attitude is everything. What we do and how we do it and what our attitude is while doing it is important. When you choose to do something, do it right, with a smile on your face even! (Exercise is good!) 2) Do a quick and brutally honest review of yourself. Do you do anything like smoke and eat fast food to often? Can you really justify either? Now, I'm not judging, I'm urging you to ask yourself. I ask myself all of this constantly - FYI. 3) Find a positive thing or habit in your life and replicate the system and/or thought process that makes that positive behavior a habit. Apply the same approach to anything you want to change.
When you look around you and see what you see and hear what you hear, make sure look at it objectively. And just because something everywhere, like a fast food joint, resist the idea that it's ok to indulge and find yourself eating there frequently. (Frequently = more than 1-2 x per month.) Look at whether a behavior or accepted attitude that manifests itself creates any good for you or someone else. If not, then why maintain it?
Finally, I embrace the idea that we should question everything around us. Especially those things that we believe are common place, accepted or important. In my opinion - the most important things in life are, health of body and mind. It is therefore essential that we limit our consumption of very accepted, common place things as basic as food and even the news media.
Be healthy, be objective, make good choices.