Feed Your Mind…

“Free your mind….and the rest will follow…”

~En Vouge, Free Your Mind~

Podcasts seem to be popping up anywhere anyone has an opinion or story. The beauty if that they are all something we all can access with ease (some for free), and tune into other people’s opinions. I scoffed at all of this at first. I mean, “Come on, man!” It’s 2021! We already have 24 news cycles, op-eds, twitter and more. There are a few that I have found to be downright additive to any type of mental health homework though. I love music, but find when I tune into these while walking, I get to exercise my brain a bit too (and it needs it!) I have grown fond of Brene Brown’s Unlocking Us podcast, Dear Chelsea by Chelsea Handler, Joyce’s Meyer’s Talk It Out, and my personal favorite, We Can do Hard Things by Glennon Doyle.

I have been trying to work on my physical health too. Returning to running after a hiatus has been painful mentally and physically. Weekends used to be for 8 mile runs, and mentally I just kick my own ass for not being there. I have been working to add what I can-where and when. One of these is on my 30 minute break, eating quickly and then walking for 20 minutes or so. Today my inner harmony was off. I could blame mercury being in retrograde or I could own my own shit and reset my mood. So I took off for my walk and decided to listen to one of Glennon Doyle’s latest podcasts.

Game changer. She does hard things AND she is a game changer in the field of mental health and recovery (imo.)

As I walked past the newly fallen leaves upon the beautiful sidewalks of East Dixon Avenue in Charlevoix; I tuned in and actively listened to what she had to say with her crew today. The title today was “Living By Your Own Original Music instead of the Crappy Cover Tunes.” (I love a good music metaphor as well.) The topic covered the basis of how do you know something about yourself versus have you conditioned yourself the worst case scenario and telling yourself lies.

Hmmm.

Digging deeper, its a hugely and deeply impactful thought. How do we know when to trust ourselves? Women inherently are trained to be nice to be people and often push away feelings of fear from strangers. It can be their intuition talking to them. I spent a good three years afraid of strangers after my assault. I allowed thoughts of fear to become a baseline.

I am also open up the anxiety I have carried with me my entire life. I was born high strung, hyper aware, empathetic, and sensitive. (All things I embrace more and more as I age and grow okay with.) How do we know if its the beast of anxiety…say a cover tune playing in our minds versus the original song of being of rational mind. Even thinking about this sorta stresses me out!

I love what the basic thought process was by those talking during the podcast. You have to get back to a baseline, ask yourself, how do I really feel in this situation/place/about a person and trust that you were made by God to feel what’s right. Stay out of overthinking and your mind. For most of us, its a damn mess in there.

I get this and it resonates with me.

My entire inner being is so much better after some form of exercise outside. Its like my body feeds off the nature of God’s creation and calms itself back to being in sync. Mentally I can problem solve anything with my running or work out shoes laced up and the certainty of my air pods being charged. Its what works for me. I can’t meditate, sit still too long, and so many other things that others use to calm down.

I understand about those cover tunes all too well. When we tell ourselves we must react to something-we internalize it and we do! What you feed yourself mentally is just as important, if not more, than what you feed yourself physically. Negative thoughts and thinking can be equated with the spinning stomach of a sugar and junk food addict. Its a roller coaster, unstable, and nothing good ever comes from it.

So ask yourself, what are you doing to feed your mind something positive today?

How are you going to re-center your day?

Do the hard thing and put some investment back in you!

And as always, I am a phone call away if you need anything or further brainstorm on this. Who knows, may be can create a rock band of positivity.

Author: toughasteal

Kate Weber is a woman who dreamed up the concept "tough as teal" while recovering from her own sexual assault in Fall 2015. Teal is the color of Sexual Assault Awareness and Ovarian Cancer (both have effected her in her personal life.)Tough as Teal is a mindset of being strong and a streak she proudly wears in her hair. Her goal is to use her voice, blog, and personal teal streak to broaden awareness of sexual violence. She believes, "you have to make people comfortable with the uncomfortable." Kate is a graduate of Michigan State University and has spent the majority of her career working within Higher Education. These areas included the following: off campus and on campus housing, overseeing academic dishonestly, coordinating academic integrity grievances, hearing, and appeals for all colleges at Michigan State University, working with STAR scholarship students, mass training for University employees, managing her own staff of 50-100 students within the Residence Halls, administrative work with the Vice President and Provost's office, devising training curriculum, serving on the Brody Neighborhood Core Team (Engagement Center liason), retention planning, safety and security work and more. Kate's first hand work with student employees, coupled with her own experience as a traditional and non-traditional student put her primary passion to be involved with college students. Statistics show alarming rates of sexual violence on college campuses and Kate passionately continues to advocate to end this statistic. Besides building her own personal toughasteal brand, Kate enjoys public speaking. She has received a national award from Toastmasters International and is putting her talent to work with the Mid-Michigan Survivor's Speaker's Bureau. She has affiliations in Pennsylvania with "Voices of Hope", national organization "Still Standing", and is a guest blogger/podcast participant for Open Thought Vortex (committed to giving a voice to victims.) Kate is also in recovery for alcoholism. She believes being honest about her own struggles and healing can help other women come forward with their own stories. Healing is not linear and there is power in speaking with one another. Recovery is a daily process to take one day at a time! Kate is looking forward to expanding her philanthropic passions to her educational pursuits in the upcoming years. She is available for speaking engagements or you are welcome to connect with her on Twitter @katers513 or toughasteal@yahoo.com Her personal interests are running, enjoying the Great Lakes of Michigan, reading, learning, a few Netflix shows, watching her beloved Spartans in all sports, and newfound motorcycle adventures with her boyfriend!

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