My eureka moment started by accident. As an empty nester, I did what many empty nesters do – I had a mid-life crisis. Yup, I bought a white sports car, started to wear mini-skirts and wondered what to do with the rest of my life since I no longer had to babysit teenagers (oh teens need babysitters more than the little ones, believe me.)
Not that I didn’t have enough to keep me busy. I was married, owned a successful training business, taught at several colleges and was helping to take care of my aging grandmother. But with the kids away at college; I could finally focus on my own needs. The problem was that I had spent the last 18 years focusing on everyone else and now I had a hard time figuring out what I truly wanted to do. So, I made a bucket list – you know; a list of things to do before you die.
On the top of my list was to graduate from college. That’s right. I had been teaching in colleges for over 15 years, but I only had an Associate’s Degree and a string of professional certifications. I decided that it was time to get my B.S. (no pun intended) so I enrolled in school.
One of the required courses for my degree was a class called Strategies for Success.
“Why do I need this, I have a great marriage, two super kids, a successful business, AND a white convertible. What could these people possibly teach me about success?”
But, the course was required, so I enrolled and decided to tell the instructor whatever he or she wanted to hear so that I could get an easy A and move on to more important classes. And so it went for about two weeks.
During the third week of this class, we learned that we only notice things that are important to us and everything else gets blocked out. Most importantly, I learned that the reason that I was successful in life was because of the way I think, not because I was lucky or special or anything. My mind focuses on things that made me successful and blocks out things that got in the way of my success.
I was hooked.
I immediately downloaded the videos for the remainder of the 15 week course and devoured them in a few days. THEN I began studying the self-help gurus – Anthony Robbins, Stedman Graham, Norman Vincent Peale, Dale Carnegie, Steven R. Covey and began applying their techniques. The results – I became MORE successful.
Not only did I graduate – I was class Valedictorian!!!
Before I go on, I don’t equate success with money. I am not a multi-millionaire, nor do I want to be, although I am convinced that I could be if I wanted to be. My definition of success is much simpler. I define it as having everything I need and MOST of what I want. (When I have everything I want, I have no goals.)
For the next several years, I began studying everything I could get my hands on about this subject – religious writings, self-help, even biographies of successful people and I began to see a pattern. Success and true happiness (what I call bliss) is a matter of how you think.
I even renamed my company (Believing Life is Setup for Success – B.L.I.S.S.) and refocused its mission to reflect our more positive direction. We are now a business in the business of teaching success rather than a mere training company.
I needed to share this with everyone I knew.
I started with my family, then with my students and of course, most people thought I was some kind of nut. Even my son told me that I sounded like a hippie. (That’s OK – hippies left Haight-Ashbury and founded the Silicon Valley.)
Eventually those who gave mental health food a try, (mainly just to shut me up, I am sure) found that they truly were happier than before.
Try this yourself
The first thing to try is to change the way you greet people. Instead of saying that you’re just OK or can’t complain (or worst of all giving a laundry list of your aches and pains,) simply tell people that you are SUPER, WONDERFUL, TERRIFIC, or as an uncle of mine always says – FANTASTIC. And by all means, don’t forget to SMILE.
You’ll feel silly at first, especially if you are usually a Gloomy Gus, but eventually you will start to feel good and have a better day. People will ask you why you are in such a good mood, as if you need a REASON to be in a good mood. Best of all, people will be ATTRACTED to you. People like to be around happy people.
What do you have to lose? Try it for a week just to see the big difference such a small change can make.
What is mental health food?
Mental health food isn’t anything you can buy. It’s whatever you fill your mind with on a daily basis.
Our minds and bodies work together to keep us alive. If we eat a healthy diet, we nourish the body and keep it healthy. In the same way, if we feed our minds a steady diet of junk food, it will lack the nutrients it needs to grow and be strong. But if we feed it with nourishing thoughts, it will, like the body, stay healthy and strong.
We eat a steady diet of mental junk food every day. We are bombarded by advertisements that point out our flaws, we listen to supervisors tear us down, then we tear each other down. This is the mental equivalent of a double-cheeseburger, super fries and a milkshake with no salad bar in sight. Just like the wrong physical diet is bad for us, so is the wrong mental diet.
Mental Health Food simply provides a salad bar alternative to the unhealthy, self-defeating thoughts we constantly digest. The coolest thing about mental health food is that it’s 100% free.
I am not a mental health professional
I am not a mental health professional. I am just a regular person who has discovered a way to stay happy most of the time.
If you woke up with a cough, and were a healthy person, chances are you would go to your medicine cabinet and take a spoonful of cough medicine and go about your day. In a day or two, you’re back to your old self. But, as the label says – if the cough persists, seek advice from your physician.
Same thing applies to your mental health. If you are down, mental health food should do the trick. But if the symptoms persist, seek the help of a mental health professional.