These are complicated times. The Internet has turned the world into a fishbowl. With social media and our addictions to electronic devices, we receive the same stories hundreds of times over. The effects can be staggering to our health in numerous ways. For instance, when we see a news headline that alerts us about a country setting off a nuclear test, our internal metabolic system is issued a warning. After all, this headline is a threat to our safety. Whether we know it or not, our bodies are logging the information as danger. Seeing posts about murder, sexual harassment, and political threats are taking a toll on our health, and most of us are not aware of the real effects. This cause and effect can be found in all of nature. And because we have free will, deductive reasoning, and are highly evolved, we have all of the tools to use cause and effect to our advantage, as identified by the Butterfly Effect. The butterfly effect is a concept that states that small causes can have larger effects.

When we think ‘That is Terrible’ in response to a salacious news headline or story, our bodies go into hyper alert to be ‘ready’ for the ‘terrible’ thing. Our adrenal glands go into overdrive. Is it any wonder we get so tired? Our bodies have gone through the fight/flight response numerous times a day and most of us have not ‘burned’ off the inflammation this build-up of toxins and acidity, by running a mile every time this happens. And, being human, we take this a few steps further. We judge what we read. We judge the people we are reading about. We judge their political affiliations and search for blame. And finally we judge media outlets, and humanity at large. Judgement and blame affect our mental, emotional and physical wellbeing. What we project outwards comes back to us inward.

Aside from the obvious solution to limit exposure to news, take breaks from electronics and physically move more, there is another challenge that I would like to share. We can consciously change our thoughts. The science of Neuroplasticity teaches us that recurring thoughts create neural pathways in our brain, therefore making it easier and more comfortable to keep repeating those same old thought patterns. Our challenge then is to be consciously aware of our thoughts. And change them.

Instead of becoming angry about what we read, look at it from another viewpoint. One of compassion, love, detachment, and forgiveness. Meditating, reading affirmations, projecting love and protection for others around the world and right here in our community, causes the ‘Butterfly Effect’. Be the butterfly!

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