Years ago, I was on the road and happened to catch a snippet of the news while waiting in an airport.
“…the Washington DC area was plunged into darkness this evening as storms raged…”
Plunged? Darkness? Rage?
Quickly I grabbed my phone and called my mom to make sure she was okay.
When she picked up, I said, “Hey! Are you all okay?”
She sounded surprised to hear from me. “Yes. Why?”
I told her that I had just seen the news.
“Well, the lights went out. So we lit candles.”
In other words, no one plunged. Nothing fell. In fact, there was no descent to speak of.
In my mom’s words: “The lights went out.”
But that’s not news, is it? Plunging, on the other hand. Now THAT’S news!
It’s no secret that the media hooks us in with subtle twists of language. After all, if we don’t get hooked, then we don’t need to find out more, do we? If we don’t need to find out more, then we won’t be watching when the commercials run.
Let’s say the guy on the news tells you: “It’s all good!”
That just sends you on your way, doesn’t it?
“Phew! Everything’s fine. Back to my day!”
But “plummeting” and “crisis” and “slumps” (oh my). Those get us every time.
Those headlines sell ads.
Here’s some breaking news for you: The news is not a public service. It’s a business. As such, it needs you to live your life reactively so you’ll keep watching.
Now, some people choose to look at all these media messages and get outraged. “Look at those media people! They’re just trying to get us!”
But this just keeps you hooked – only it’s from a different angle. The media watch dog types provide another perspective – but they still remain at the level of the drama. It’s still reaction.
There’s another way. You can rise above the negativity completely. And then choose to see the media and all of its doom and gloom as “resistance training” – actually helping your mental muscle to grow, and training you to get better and better at creating your own reality.
Does this sound a little stupid?
Well, consider something.
Think about your muscles. Whether you’re a world-class athlete or just someone who works-out to stay in shape, your muscles do not grow or change without meeting resistance. Resistance training is required for the building of body and muscle strength – even if it’s just the weight of your own body, as in Pilates or Yoga.
So, why would it be any different with creating new thought patterns and better responses to the world around you?
So rather than waiting for the negativity to subside so that you can feel okay about the world, use it as training! It’s a form of resistance training. It is helping you become a better creator, a better leader of your own life, and someone who can self-generate happiness and results. As opposed to being someone who waits for the outside world to tell you that you’re okay, that you’re gonna be okay, and that you are productive, abundant, and peaceful.
Here’s how it works:
1 – You consciously choose the thoughts you want to think and believe.
2 – Every time you hear the news, or find yourself in a conversation with doomers and gloomers, become an athlete. See how your mind and its thoughts hold up to the resistance.
3 – Remember that no one goes into a gym for the first time and bench presses 300 pounds. (Or 100 for that matter!) It takes practice and awareness.
4 – Congratulate yourself each time you notice that you hold your mental strength and keep your desired perspective. That’s the beginning!
When you get good at this, you’ll see powerful results. You’ll notice that you instantly see through the drama and the language that used to hook you.
And best of all, you’ll recognize that your thoughts are far more powerful than anything that plummets, descends, or has a crisis outside of them.