The words you say – and the words you choose to hear.
Even the silent ones.
We all have this little voice inside our head that tells us what we’re thinking. It’s the little voice that just said “What voice? There aren’t any voices.”
Some studies indicate that we have around 65,000 thoughts per day – and that 95% of them are the same ones we had yesterday.
Last week, when I suggested turning off the TV, the reason behind that was to allow you to take some control over the thoughts that are put into your head. Several of you mentioned having a TV on at night. I find it terrifying that you might end up unknowingly feeding your brain with “Girls Gone Wild” infomercials, gangster style hip-hop lyrics, or political craziness.
Of course, you can also add those thoughts knowingly depending on the TV shows, radio stations, and articles you read.
So what happens when a negative thought gets into the 95% of our thoughts that are repeated every day? You act on them.
Coming from the world of advertising, I know one answer – you buy something.
Something to fulfill the need created by the negative thought.
And it all happens at a level below our consciousness.
But what about some of the scarier thoughts? How far will you go to act them out? We all have inner limits that keep us from, say, killing someone. A hypnotized person won’t do anything they wouldn’t do when they’re not hypnotized.
Buying new clothes or a fancy car to correct an inner negative thought is one thing. Killing someone because of negative thoughts goes up against our inner limits of what is right or wrong.
Unless you have a serious mental illness.
In that case, you might be provoked by the things you watch on TV and read on the Internet, or hear in the lyrics of a song. You might decide that certain people really are out to “destroy your way of life,” and that the only way to stop that is with a “second amendment solution.”
This week you’ll hear a bunch of debate on whether the political and media rhetoric about “targeting” the opposition with hate and violence based language is a first amendment right or taken out of context. At least I hope we have that discussion for more than just one news cycle.
Now ponder one more thought: 4% of the American population has what is considered “serious mental illness.”
There’s a broad range of illnesses there. But if only 1/10 of a percent of them are potentially violent, we have roughly 200 more Jared Loughners living right here in the valley.
If we allow this kind of rhetoric to continue unchecked, last weekend’s “Arizona Massacre” is only the beginning.
Words have Power
Those you say and those you hear.
This week – step back and think about what you’re listening to and watching. We can have heated discussions without resorting to the kind of rhetoric that has overtaken the country in the last couple of years.
There are people in politics and the media who are making boatloads of money because you are listening. If we say “enough!” and stop granting them a spotlight, the money will go away, and we can get back to getting things done.
Closing message 1/10/2010. Each week, I do a “closing thought” at my Networking Group, the Scottsdale Innovators. We meet Tuesdays for lunch at the Rock Bottom Restaurant at Desert Ridge in North Phoenix. Things start at 11:30 am and you’re out by 1 pm. If you’re in the neighborhood, come see us.
Want to grow your business this year? Lynn McColley offers Small Business Web Site Design, Do-It-Yourself Email Marketing Blast software, Local SEO and Internet Marketing through his company McColley Marketing Media. He can be reached at 480-704-4286.