In this podcast (episode #544) and blog, I talk about why it is okay if things are not good or happy all the time, and how our “social media” expectations can impact our mental health.
We all know instinctively that things can’t be good all the time. No one’s life is perfect, regardless of what we may see on social media or what we hear or see as we go about our lives.
Have you ever just looked at someone’s social media post or thought, why isn't this happening in my life? What am I doing wrong? Why do good things like this never happen to me? I think we are all guilty of this—I know I am! And, if we continue down this rabbit hole, we can feel worse and worse about our lives, which affects our mental health. It is important to remember that whatever we think about the most grows, and whatever we grow the most into our networks will drive us!
This is why we should all practice pausing when we feel this way and evaluating what we feel and why in the moment – before it can take root in our minds and impact our peace and wellbeing. We need to remember that things like social media are designed to hook our attention in a way that gets us to think about what we have seen all the time. If we are not careful or aware of this, we can build networks into our mind and brain that make us think that there is something wrong with our lives because we are not happy or things are not great all the time, which will impact our mental health and ability to manage the ups and downs of life.
It is unrealistic to expect that things will be good all the time or we should be happy all the time. Being human means embracing change and going through life—this is how we develop our emotional regulation skills and character. Like diamonds, we are often shaped under pressure!
Yet if we uncritically accept what we see or hear as the truth, or just go through life unaware of how our perceptions are being shaped by our environment, we can set ourselves up for failure when things go wrong or when life throws us lemons.
It is important to understand that up to 95% of what we are exposed to during the course of the day is going into the nonconscious mind. We only deliberately focus on around 5-10% of what we are exposed to at any given time. This means that we absorb a lot of “stuff”—perceptions, emotions, images and so on that we need to focus on and be aware of. We shouldn’t just let anything into our heads and in our lives! Some research even shows that our perceptions and behaviors can change in under 5 minutes of exposure to certain images or ideas!
We need to be hyper aware of how we are feeling and behaving and perceiving things as we go through life. This includes how our bodies react to what we are thinking and feeling—these are what I call “physical warning signals” that are telling us to pay attention to what we are allowing into our heads.
For more on managing this, listen to my podcast (episode #544). If you enjoy listening to my podcast, please consider leaving a 5-star review and subscribing. And keep sharing episodes with friends and family and on social media. (Don’t forget to tag me so I can see your posts!).
This podcast is sponsored by:
Apollo. One of my New Year’s resolutions is to relax more, and I am so happy that I found Apollo, a wearable that transforms how you feel through your sense of touch to give you more energy, a brighter mood, deeper relaxation, and better flow. The Apollo wearable was developed by neuroscientists and physicians to bring balance to your nervous system for less stress, better sleep, more energy, relaxation, and focus. It sends silent, soothing vibrations, called Apollo Vibes, that are like music you can feel. Just like music, higher vibrations help improve your energy and focus, while lower vibrations reduce stress and help you relax. You can wear your Apollo on your ankle (like me!), wrist, or attached to your clothing, and use the Apollo Neuro app on your phone, Apple Watch, or iPad to select or schedule Vibes when and where you need more relaxation, energy, focus, or more. If you also want to say goodbye to stress in the new year, check out Apollo! To get $50 off your device, just go to apolloneuro.com/drleaf.
Kion Aminos. As an older woman, I am particularly aware of the need for certain amino acids to maintain my wellbeing and longevity. Low-dose (3g), leucine-rich, essential amino acids (like Kion Aminos) stimulate muscle synthesis equivalently to 20g of whey protein in older women at rest and after exercise. This means, for older women, Kion Aminos can be 6x more effective than an equal amount of whole food protein at stimulating muscle synthesis. If you’re a woman in her 60s like me (if you’re worried about age-related muscle loss, if you’re trying to keep the weight off) you need to focus on building and maintaining muscle, and as little as 3 g of EAAs per day is going to be the easiest way to support that. This is why I take Kion’s aminos every morning with my coffee. Not only do they taste amazing, are non-GMO, vegan and sugar-free, but since I have started taking them I feel so much more energized throughout the day, and experience less muscle pain after workouts. If you also want to say goodbye to 3pm slumps and finish off your day with natural, lasting energy, check out Kion Aminos! To save 20% on Kion Aminos, just go to getkion.com/Drleafto get my fundamental supplement for fitness, Kion Aminos.
0:12 Life is not meant to be perfect
1:05 Why we feel that things need to be good all the time
8:23 Why we need to celebrate other people’s happiness
10:00 It’s normal to experience ups & downs in life!
11:09 Why we need to challenge how we think & react to what we see on social media
12:20, 18:51 The importance of examining our environment & how it affects us
This podcast and blog are for educational purposes only and are not intended as medical advice. We always encourage each person to make the decision that seems best for their situation with the guidance of a medical professional.