It’s important to ask what benefit the conveyer of a message has in sharing it.
For example: you see a documentary on why eating 10 servings of red meat a day is going to improve your health and well-being. You’re suddenly reconsidering your diet and googling the nearest butcher shop. The credits start to roll and you poke your head up to notice that the film was funded by the Coalition of the Cattle Farmers of America (I have no idea if that’s a real thing and, to my knowledge, this documentary and scenario are 100% fictional.)
Knowing that might cause you to question the level of bias in the information and may have you reconsidering that extra freezer and trip to the meat shop.
Why am I pointing this out? Because often the bias isn’t as obvious. Or it’s not intended to dupe you but is well-intentioned and simply isn’t best for you.
In a world where your plate is full (not trying to elongate this meat metaphor), it’s understandable that you don’t have time or energy to question everything (let alone research it and then research the legitimacy of that research).
I’ve been thinking about this a lot as it pertains to the wellness industry.
I recently read a book about which I can’t stop raving (do yourself a favor and pick it up (given the context of this message, I have no skin in the game other than my desire to support you)). It does a great job of shining a giant flashlight on this through one specific lens: perfectionism.
Instead of making you feel broken or wrong if you have any perfectionistic tendencies, it helps you to understand that you can actually use this as a tool and a gift.
Like any tool, it can be used for ‘good’ or ‘bad’. In the words of the book’s author, Katherine Morgan Schafler, it will be both ‘adaptive’ and ‘maladaptive’ (never one or the other entirely).
This leads me to ask you:
- Are there parts of who you are that you’ve been taught to believe are ‘bad’ or ‘wrong’ inherently?
- If so, what are they? And how might it free you if you could see that thing or things from a more multi-faceted perspective whereby it becomes more nuanced: Are you utilizing that part of…