I recently purchased a piece of art that said "be kind to your mind." What I like about art is that there's no right or wrong way to interpret it. It's all based on the individual and how it makes he/she feel. At first glance, "be kind to your mind" made me think about the importance of positive words to self, or making healthier decisions. However, after I continued staring at it, I began to see the importance of viewing myself as stronger, better, and wiser than I really give credit for. It can be difficult to credit ourselves with positive thoughts because too often we're on Self-Pity Lane when something doesn't go our way. My self-pity moments usually look like me thinking of all the things I could have done differently, pondering on the many times I've been rejected, and questioning my adequacy. This month is all about being kind to our minds because the brain is the starting point to how we see our aging experience!
Self-pity: pity for oneself, especially a self-indulgent attitude concerning one's own difficulties, hardships, etc.
When we're in the midst of a self-pity party, we rarely consider what the lasting effects of this brings to our aging experience. Personally in moments of self-pity, it is easier for me to allow my mind to queue the violins and walk around saying "woe is me," than it is to choose positivity. That's wild, right? It's easier to embrace negativity, than it is to challenge it and in life who doesn't choose the easy way out at times? The thing is, the more we participate in self-pity, the more room we create for negativity in our minds, and that my friend is not very kind. Self-pity brings about feelings of unworthiness, stagnation, isolation and the list goes on and on *in my Erykah Badu voice.* If all we ever do is continue to indulge in what is not going well for us or how challenging life is, how can we ever see the good things that we do have? For example, we still have breath in our bodies, mobility (to a degree depending on the situation), and so many other things that we overlook because of our mindset.
Jump Over the Self-Pity Hurdle
Like I said earlier, it's easier to get into self-pity mode than it is getting out of it. So, when it comes to overcoming a hurdle such as this, I'll use the formula of the late Nipsey Hussle, it takes hard work + patience. Just like we apply hard work and patience to our goals, dreams, and other aspects of life, it applies to how we overcome negativity as well. It's the best way to be kind to our minds. It takes hard work to redirect negative thoughts, which requires patience when we may fall short or don't see our thought processing change overnight. With all of the different situations I've experienced, and I'm currently experiencing, I can easily feel sorry for myself, but what good would that do? I choose to see my strength, how situations are making me better, and what wisdom has been gained. When we mix that in with Nip's formula, we are well on our way of not giving in to self-pity and seeing our aging experience in a brighter light.
The More You Know..
As we continue aging, kindness to our minds is where all the love, joy, and happiness flows. That doesn't mean that challenges will stop coming, OR that we shouldn't seek mental help when things become extremely overwhelming. Nor does it mean there'll be days we won't give in to negativity because it happens. However, it does mean that we are doing everything we can to make the best with the cards we are dealt. Recognizing when we have gone down Self-Pity Lane and putting a stop to it is just ONE way of being kind to your mind. Stay tuned for more posts related to being kind to our mind this month!
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