I’ve been a big guy since my early teen years. I kept my weight in check during high school by doing show choir (not glee, show choir, you know before it was cool). After that, I got big. I’m working on getting healthy now. Seeing a dietician, my doctor and trying to be careful about what I put into my body.
Let me put it another way.
I love watching, reading, and knowing the news. What is going on around me politically has categorically fascinated me since I was very young. I love to be able to have an intelligent conversation about current events. I would read articles online, in the newspaper, watch the news every day, and check my “sites” on an hourly basis. But no more.
You see, this information is largely negative. While I sympathize with those who lose their lives, their homes, and other things around the world, I can’t continue to allow myself to be bombarded with negative message without it taking a toll. So I unsubscribed from the New York Times (I know, who actually gets the newspaper delivered anymore?), deleting bookmarks and stopped watching the news. I let my singular news source be my Twitter feed. You know what? I’ve noticed the world isn’t so bad when I don’t have to carry every single burden out there.
What do these two things have in common? Changes in consumption. Two areas that I was consuming the wrong or unhelpful items that were negatively impacting my health and life. So I made a change. It wasn’t easy. It wasn’t necessarily fun. But they have both made a huge difference in my physical and emotional health.
What we put into our bodies, be it food, words, books, news, music, code, learning, or anything else, affects who we are. It affects our health, our relationships, and our mind. Eat too much Thanksgiving dinner? Your jeans feel a bit tight. Read too much Poe? The world starts to look dark.
You control what you consume. Others may have some sway, but in the end only you can decide what is healthy and what is detrimental. Start small. Make a slow change. But take stock of what you consume and whether it really adds to your life. Good is enemy of great.
What you consume, it matters.