Award-winning author, international speaker, and former radio show personality.
Opening the news on one’s computer these days is like sticking your hand inside a garbage bin. You don’t know what you are going to get, but what you do know is that it will be trash. Everyday, Americans are being bombarded by scandal, rhetoric, and disaster. Rarely are we reminded of the good in this world nor do we get to see many peoples joy, passion, and purpose highlighted in the media. The United States of America is starring in its own reality show and the citizens of this country are addicted and tuning in.
This is a sad time in our history. The country is divided. People are on clear opposing sides, friends and families have split over political positions. Anger, sadness, rioting, demonstrations, and violence are permeating our daily lives. Our country is being run by an infantile Commander in Tweet. Here in New York, police are suited up in riot gear, wielding automatic weapons in response to the outrageous and dubious claims of this administration. At best, America is overwhelming and at its worst, it is downright depressing. You can’t go anywhere without hearing or experiencing the impact of our current culture.
Yesterday, out of the blue, the Commander in Tweet tweeted that there was now going to be a ban on transgender people in the military. First, this decision is beyond words. It is so many steps backward. Once again, this country’s administration is marginalizing a group people for the antiquated beliefs of a few. These types of acts create fear, ignorance, and misunderstandings. As I walked the streets of New York, I saw the impact of the utterly ridiculous, cruel and insensitive position that Donald Trump took on a group he promised to protect and support. Yet again, Trump has helped to further erode the fabric of our society by creating more hate, upheaval, and division.
Individually, the acts of this presidency are defined by their own adjectives that fall within the scope of insane, incomprehensible, obnoxious, uninformed, and malignant to childish. But let me be clear about my commentary and opinion, they are not about political affiliation. They are about simple awareness, morality, psychology, and LOVE. What we don’t realize in all the chaos is there is an even greater challenge that we face that will have far lasting implications than this era of poor leadership. The problem relates to the brain and how all this turmoil is changing our perceptions. Because of the brains neuroplasticity, it shapes itself based on repeated experiences. So whether we are aware or not, all this drama, rage, and separation are going to lock our brains in to be hardwired to want more of the same. It is like a heroin addiction. The more you do it, the more it takes to get you high.
Stick with me here…Have you ever wondered why we don’t see much in the way of “feel good” stories? It is simply because that is not what we crave. We say we want to see more good things, but yet, it is hard to turn away from a train crash. What we watch, who we spend time with, and what surround ourselves with has a direct implication on our behavior and the “tastes” we prefer. Many of us are addicted to drama and have gotten so caught up in all of it that it is no longer something outside ourselves. In fact, for some, the problems of the world have become more of a personal attack. To highlight what I mean, just the other day, I was talking to someone and she said, “The news is giving me anxiety. I hate Trump. I hate him so much. I hope he loses everything.” She went on to say some other things that were unnecessary and rather extreme. The point is that this is someone who has let the outer reality become her personal reality. Trump is not her problem or her personal friend. So the real question is, “Why does this/he resonate with her so much?”
The bad stuff in life isn’t going to go away anytime soon. In fact, there is a great quote that says “What we resist persists.” So, if we want meaningful change, we are going to have to become meaningful change agents. Letting the outside world erode your inner peace and sanity is not the way to progress. Yes, we need to stand strong. But don’t let the shiny objects this world is showing you of hate, bigotry, immorality, and lawlessness be what grabs your attentions. Practice mindfulness. Be aware of what you watch on television. Be in tune with your feelings and how the static is affecting you. Turn off the Tv once in a while. Be aware of the people who you spend time with and really listen to what they say. If they are not inspiring you to be a better version of yourself and only offering you a garbage bin to pick through, it may be time to readdress that relationship. The world will still have its issues. That is one of the consistencies of life. But wouldn’t you rather pluck a flower than hold a piece of S#%T? Just sayin’.