If one of your diet and nutrition goals is to eat healthier, you’ve probably noticed that when you eat a salad or something similarly nutritious, you feel awesome afterward. Your mind is sharper, you have more energy, and your stomach isn’t heavy and bloated.
If you’ve been eating this way for a while and then you eat a large burger and fries from your favorite fast-food place, it may taste heavenly at the time, but you probably feel totally disgusting and sluggish afterward.
The same principles apply to your mind.
What are you feeding your brain? Do you come home from work, plop on the couch and turn on the television until bed? Or do you come home and work on a hobby or read a book?
I love television as much as everyone else (especially Comedy Central), but I try to watch it sparingly because it’s junk-food for my brain. As I mentioned in “What Is Your Why?” most of the time I watch TV to distract myself from something or to unwind from working.
Philosophy in Accounting
Oddly enough, in my financial accounting class this week, our Professor Brian Profancik, CPA, talked about almost this exact same philosophy. He brought in and recommended the book As a Man Thinketh by James Allen.
I haven’t read Allen’s book (yet), but from what I understand, the central concept is that we have ultimate control over our lives based on our thoughts. He uses the analogy of us being gardeners: We can sow seeds and water them with positive, nurturing thoughts or we can choose to neglect them, letting the weeds overrun our minds.
Basically, what we feed our brains determines whether we succeed at our goals.
Now, this was an eerie coincidence to me because not even a week ago, I stumbled upon an interview in Success magazine with author and motivational speaker Denis Waitley who also shared how life-changing As a Man Thinketh had been for him. If you’re unfamiliar with Waitley, you may know him as the author of The Psychology of Winning, one of the most influential personal-development books of all time.
One of my classmates (I forget his name, but I remember he’s a fellow Midwesterner – Oklahoma? Iowa? I’ll find out and make the correction later) added to Profancik’s comments that he felt beliefs are really what shape our experiences. We are all raised with beliefs that we take for granted as being true and correct, and often we don’t test them. Lately, he’s been challenging his beliefs and has found it to be a positive experience.
It sounded to me as if someone has been asking “why?” a lot – love it! Also, the idea of challenging your beliefs was another concept I’d read about recently via Jennifer Blanchard’s Procrastinating Writers blog.
Profancik took Midwest’s comments one step further and added that while it’s essential to know our beliefs and understand why we believe what we do, we also need to make sure our actions are aligned with our beliefs.
After all, saying you believe one thing and then doing another creates cognitive dissonance, which almost always makes us miserable. (For example, a guy says he believes family is the most important thing, but then spends 90 hours a week at work away from his wife and kids.)
Now why did those remarks sound familiar? Oh yeah, because it’s essentially the same message I wrote about in, “Are Your Priorities in Line With Your Goals?”
It was so exciting to hear several of the themes I touch on here in Tenacious Me spoken by other people – and in a financial accounting class no less!
What tasty new thoughts, beliefs, actions, goals or experiences have you been stuffing your brain with lately?
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