“We all eat lies when our hearts are hungry…”
Not sure what you’re thinking this blog post will be about by reading the title, but I assure you this is worth some of your time. This morning I stumbled upon a Ted Talk by Allen Stone. He’s a singer-songwriter from Washington and I just recently started listening to his music so when I saw he had given a Ted Talk, I was curious to listen to it. You should definitely go watch it on Youtube.
To give you a brief summary of what he was talking about, he shared about how he spent years of his life allowing large portions of his mental real estate to be held captive by negative emotions like bitterness and anger. He was wronged in his music career, he disagreed with things in the church and he held on to those things in his heart to where they embittered him. The way he described it is that the portions of his mental real estate that were given over to bitterness were stunting his creativity and his ability to feel joy. He said it wasn’t until a random day on a plane that he was struck with gratitude that completely changed him and opened his mind to breathe again. I love that it was overwhelming gratitude in his heart that moved him out of bitterness.
I was so moved by what he shared. I loved that he shared songs that he wrote in those times throughout his Ted Talk too. That’s my kind of Ted Talk haha. I was impacted by what he said because I feel like it spoke to something I’ve been thinking about lately. I’ve been trying to work on my time management skills lately and wanting to make sure my days are always the most productive they can be. It seems like a lot of people have been talking about that too. Since I am contracted by a lot of different people and businesses to do different things for work, I follow other people who work for themselves and are entrepreneurs. The main thing that many of them talk about is learning the art of great time management.
What I loved about this talk though is that it reminded me that our mental management is just as important and many times, even more important. I caught myself asking these questions:
- To what am I giving pieces of my mental real estate?
- Are they emotions or thought processes that will bring me down and stifle my creativity?
- Do I allow my mind to be held captive by things that are not pushing me towards my goals?
- Do my thought processes prevent me from fully giving and receiving love?
I can’t think of a time where bitterness had some of my mental real estate, but I can think of plenty of times when insecurity did. I’ve struggled with self-confidence most of my life. It may sound funny to some if you know that I sing in front of people for a living. But just because some people can step up in front of people doesn’t always mean they are the most confident. I have learned how to challenge myself to grow through my insecurities and I have learned how to be more confident over the years.
However, when I was younger, insecurities ruled my mind. Every decision I made seemed to somehow be ran through the filter of “what will someone think of me?” or “wait, do I look bad?” or “I’m not good enough for that”. It wasn’t until I reached my adult years in my early twenties when I just grew tired of all the extra energy I was putting into these insecurities. I was exhausted. I wasn’t free. I wasn’t confident. I was just insecure and tired. I was believing lies about myself and letting them create fear in heart.
So I decided that I had let this negative thought process rule me for too long. I wanted to do something to change that. And honestly, just like what Allen Stone was talking about, my vicious cycle of insecurities was stopped once I leaned into gratitude. I needed a change of heart to then free my mind.
I decided to be thankful for where I was and look at the beauty around me. I decided to redirect my energy towards caring for others or helping them instead of always being consumed by how I looked or what people thought of me. Quite honestly in, when I’m being insecure is when I’m being the most selfish because I’m thinking only about myself. The moment I cleared those insecurities out of those acres of mental real estate where they used to reside, was the moment I had more room to give to others.
So I want to encourage you to ask yourself those same questions.
What acres of your mental real estate are you giving over to negativity?
How different would life be if you only gave mental real estate to life-giving things?
What change of heart do you need so that you can free your mind?
Be grateful for where you are and love those around you. Life is truly a gift and negativity has no power to weigh you down if you don’t let it.