Have myths, excuses and sabotage hijacked your thinking about your health and whether you can overcome lifestyle diseases or not?

If so, while we take better care of our bodies, what about our thoughts? What most of us don’t think about is what we think about.

When we change our beliefs on the inside, we transform the results we see on the outside.

Unconsciously we go about dealing with daily tasks, situations, traffic, long lines, slow internet, and other people. Years ago, I heard motivational speaker Connie Podesta start her talk with “Life would be great if it weren’t for other people.” Humorous and true enough, but not possible.

So, once aware, how do we detox our minds, our thoughts, and feelings? Entire volumes are written about how to do this. I can only offer some suggestions to get you started.                              

How about aiming to de-stress life situations at the same time you detox your body? What thoughts and feelings come bubbling up right now? To mentally detox, allow yourself to become aware of thoughts that have an emotional trigger, make you angry, or disappointed. Is there something you think is holding you back?

Stress can lead to disease, and repeated focus on things that are stressful to you will eventually damage your health and your spirit. So, a mental detox and a body detox give you a double boost up.

Think about the people you are repeatedly around. If some are negative family members or co-workers, you may need to limit the time you’re together or just be mindful with your thoughts during time together. Realizing that they can’t force you to become angry makes it easier to keep your cool. I don’t mean excusing the actions of others, but rather, not allowing them to derail you.

Les Brown, now a well-known speaker, knew from personal experience that harsh words can demoralize the listener. But a wise teacher turned his life around when he told him, “Don’t let someone else’s opinion of you become your reality.”

Become aware and release negative thoughts. Replace them with gratitude thoughts. A negative heart and a grateful heart can’t co-exist. The heart and brain constantly communicate through a complex network of cells, and surprisingly most messages go from your heart to your brain. So, your emotions can bully your thoughts.

If your self-talk tells you that you’re (insert negative talk) then you need to change that to “I deserve to be healthy” or whatever is the positive version of what you tell yourself.  Keep saying it so your emotions pick up on your tremendous value.

You can focus on mental cleansing at specific times, or just pay attention to your thoughts throughout the day. As you purposefully choose to release stressful thoughts, you will experience more peace and less anxiety or self-doubt. Your reaction can even unconsciously defuse the other person’s attitude as well. Not always, but sometimes.

Yoga and quieting the mind through prayer or meditation are simple and effective ways to remedy tension. It recharges your physical and mental powers to overcome the inevitable tension life will bring. Even 5 minutes daily will benefit you.

It might be sitting silently for 5-10 minutes and not some fancy ritual. Think about your goals and how good you’ll feel to accomplish them. Focus on your breathing, with purposeful, slow deep breaths. This will calm your heart and, in turn, will calm your mind.

The body is a complex but integrated machine. When you eat harmful foods, hold negative emotions like fear, self-doubt, anger or unforgiveness, or focus on stressful thoughts, your brain is affected and even shrinks. Brain fog can set in. It can be reversed by releasing negative emotions, even if only for a few minutes at a time.

There’s a story of a businessman arrived home after work, parked in the driveway, and on the way into the house placed an imaginary bundle on a tree branch. In the morning he reversed the process. A neighbor observed him do this several times, and one morning asked him about it. He smiled and replied, “I’m leaving my work problems outside. I pick them back up if I need to think about a solution on the way to work the next day.”

No one can force you to think a certain way. But when others tell us lies or hurtful things, it’s very hard to ignore. So, a conscious mental detox gives you a chance to show that you get to be the commander of your emotions and thoughts. Choose wisely, live long and prosper. And celebrate!