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  • Writer's pictureSabna Farsana

What you take in

Once, I was listening to a lecture. The speaker mentioned a song and how terrible the lyrics were. There was a comment below the video hinting at the name of the song. Me being me, curious as usual, looked for the lyrics of the song. I said to myself, "That is so dirty" and I repeated it every time I heard that song here and there. But one fine morning, I caught myself humming that every song. Only after a few minutes did the realisation hit me. I made a conscious effort to stop myself then on, by checking everytime what am I humming. Whatever one sees or hears, it is taken in.

We, humans, are just like sponges. We absorb what we see and hear. Thoughts are created around them. We might not even notice how these influence our beliefs and viewpoints, even those which we know are to be wrong or we dislike. Consciously, we wouldn't have wanted it in our heads. A string of thoughts would come up as we see/ hear it, new connections would be made with our existing beliefs and these also take part in shaping our new beliefs.

But unfortunately, there is no delete button. We can't unsee what we have seen once or unhear what we have heard once. So what can be done?

First, be conscious of what you consume. What do you see? What do you hear? Even if you know what you see is not true or right, be it novels, movies, articles, or any piece of content, parts of it will be imbedded in our head. If these parts influence your beliefs that help you to be a better person, the person you truly want to be, then you may continue with it. But does it take you to place that doesn't let you use your potential, improving your or others lives? Then you might have to really make a decision if you would still like continue with it.

Second, be aware of your thoughts. As we see/ hear something, thoughts are simultaneously created in our heads, the meaning we give to that particular content. These thoughts are the one that stick around longer than the actual content. We might not remember the context, what we actually saw/ heard, and sometimes we do not even remember if it we experienced it first person or through other mediums (stories, movies, conversations with others). But the thoughts created stay, not the truth, but parts of our version of it.

Third, evaluate your current beliefs. Ask yourself, 'Where did I get this thought from?'. Humans have be the ability to unlearn and relearn, but only if one is aware of it. So, everytime a preassumed belief about something pops in your head, or you keep on stating something is right or wrong, and most importantly when thinking about your expectations, dig deeper to find where you got the idea from and how it has been influenced.

So, if any piece of content takes you closer to being the person you want to be, fills in that positivity, let it stay. Anything else that doesn't do you any good, think about how it influences your life and make a decision.

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