MENTAL DIET   by CHRIS GIRARD

MENTAL DIET



I am employed in the so-called “Hospitality Industry.”  Every day people walk into the restaurant where I work and sit at my tables.  Many of them are well read and abreast of the latest food trends – knowledgeable about calories, carbohydrates, and proteins.  “Got to watch what I put in my body.”  They often ask, “What’s in that?  What kind of oil is that cooked in?  Got any low-fat salad dressing?”  Got to be careful what goes in God’s temple.  True-blue, serious dieters - Atkin’s, South Beach, North Beach, West Beach, and even East Beach, baby!  Low carb, no carb, no bread, no fat, no butter, no cream, no sugar - no joke! They watch, organize, and count it all; every calorie is rolled, every pound is tallied; red ledger, black ledger; serious accountants - physical food accountants!


ALL this started me thinking, “What about our mental diets?  With what exactly are we “fueling” our minds? Where’s the calorie chart for character?  Where’s the body-fat analysis for my spirit?”

It is said that worry is nothing more than a prayer for something you don’t want.  We mull it over and over in our mind until we practically produce the very thought, the very thing that we didn’t want in the first place.

What about anger, jealousy, resentment, and hate?  The list goes on and on, yet we sit down to this table every day.  Heck, it’s a veritable buffet - an “all-you-can-eat” special.  There is no dieting here.  No calorie counting.  Yet we eat from this plate every day without a second thought.  Example:  you get cut off in traffic, and WHAM! - a Big Mac Value Meal of Anger is delivered and devoured stimulating a negative response.

Imagine that you’ve been working out at the gym.  You feel good, and you look good - fit and trim.  You are proud, even a little cocky with your new-found sense of self.  Monday morning finds you at the water cooler, and a coworker says, “We’re going to the cafeteria for chocolate cake, want to come?”  You may laugh, and look at them like they’re crazy, and you may even feel a little sorry for them because of their unhealthy ways.  But observe this scenario:  same Monday morning at the water cooler, but your coworkers are talking about a fellow employee and her embarrassing actions at the office party.  They’re gossiping, putting her down, and being mean spirited.  Instead of walking away, you join in without a second thought.  No mental diet here, huh?  Why not?




I have a beautiful 55-inch, state-of-the-art, flat-screen, plasma television in my apartment.  It’s got the whole nine yards.  Digital Cable, ya know!!  NINE HBO’S, FIVE CINEMAXS, and THREE ENCORES!  I’ve got it all – I mean everything!  I watch this beautiful box, maybe two hours a day.  Why?  Hmmm, why?

If what we put in our body is so important, then maybe what we put into our minds is as so or even more important.  Yet we don’t even give it a second thought.

Look around at our world today:  war, murder, and destruction.  I feel __________ (lousy, depressed, afraid, tense) fill in the blank.  No, really, go ahead, fill in the blank.  Let’s make this personal.  Yeah you, Reader, get off the sidelines, and get in the game!  Have you ever wondered why you feel this way?  Day by day we gorge ourselves on negative energy and destructive thoughts, yet we aren’t even aware of it.


****WE INTERRUPT THIS SHORT STORY, TO BRING YOU A SPECIAL CNN .  THE HOMELAND SECURITY OFFICE HAS ISSUED A RED ALERT.  THE TERROR LEVEL HAS BEEN ELEVATED TO RED. ****


BEWARE – WATCHOUT – BE AFRAID – BE SUSPICIOUS


Yep, go right ahead, put your napkin in your lap, and take a big bite.  A little ketchup with that fear today, sir?  Excuse me, sir, how would you like your terror prepared today?  In it goes, right past our physical food trainers with its nose in the air.


Tap – Tap – Tap     NOW, FOR TODAY’S HEADLINES COMING UP AT SIX ON YOUR LOCAL NEWS ….. Fear – Hate – Anger – Worry.  The menu is endless.  Wow! - look at the Early Bird Special!



“Tonight the Chef has prepared a beautiful Filet of Self-loathing,

finished off nicely with a Failure Buerre Blanc

accompanied with a side of Steamed Depression.”



Masura Emoto performed a special study on water.  In his book “MESSAGES OF WATER,” he talks about the effects that thoughts have on water.  He photographed molecules of water that had been exposed to different stimuli.  Emoto found that certain negative stimuli produced cloudy disjointed water molecules.  He also found that positive stimuli, such as that given off by Buddhist monks meditating and projecting peace and love produce a completely different reaction and structure in the same water molecules.  He photographed these water molecules on an atomic level, and the positive exposed water showed perfect snowflake crystals - all symmetrical, and all were clear and alike.  The negative molecules were all crude, murky, and disjointed.




Makes you think, huh?  Makes you wonder about the power and energy of your thoughts.  Now sit down, and get a hold of yourself.  Ready?  THE HUMAN BODY IS MADE UP OF 98% WATER.  How do you like them apples, partner?


I HATE YOU; I NEVER WANT TO SEE YOU AGAIN; YOU ARE WORTHLESS; YOU SON OF A BITCH – GET OUT OF MY WAY!


WOW! - what am I projecting to other human beings?  What are they projecting to me?  What am I projecting on myself?  I am a failure, I suck, I’m ugly.  Where is my diet now?


We spend so much money on gyms, beauty products, liposuction, and botox.  We don’t spend a dime on our thoughts.  Not really.  Why not?  We don’t diet, we don’t fast, and we certainly don’t eat healthy.  We don’t spend countless hours in the mental/spiritual gym pumping iron.  We don’t work and stretch our spiritual muscles.  We don’t tone our gratitude.  We don’t exercise our love.  We don’t take a Jacuzzi with peace.  No, that would be silly.




It is said that if you are fit spiritually, then all else: the mental and the physical, will fall into place.  When it comes to the mind, when it comes to our emotions and our thoughts, we pull up our chair, tuck in the napkin, roll up our sleeves, and say, “Pass the mash potatoes, please.”

AFRAID.  TIRED.  WORRIED.  DEPRESSED.  ANXIOUS.  The restaurant of negative thoughts has a 24-hour drive through.  The Neon Café of Fear is always open.


    Maybe we have been dieting in the wrong area.  Maybe our attention is a little skewed.  Maybe we should show a little self-restraint.  Maybe next time somebody offers us a dessert of greed, we can say, “no, thanks.”  Maybe we should cut down on self-loathing.  Maybe a hearty snack of love and peace would be a healthy alternative from the old food chart.  Maybe an apple of serenity would indeed keep the doctor away.  No, that’s crazy.   Yeah, well, maybe not!


    My refrigerator at home is stocked with water.  Yes, I have been meditating on my water.  Yes, I have sent it love and peace.  Yes, at one time I even wrote on each bottle.  One said GOD.  Another said PEACE, and one in the freezer was even labeled LOVE.  Crazy, huh?  Well, what do I know?  I’ll try anything once.  I have fresh fruit, fresh vegetables, and lots of other healthy stuff.

More importantly though…

My desk at home holds some Emmett Fox books.  Inspirational pictures adorn my walls.  The bathroom has a twenty-four hour prayer book.  I seldom watch Television or read the papers.  I do believe in prayer and meditation.  I often ask God to change my thinking - my mental blueprint.  I am watching what I eat today.  I am counting calories.  I am on a new diet…a spiritual diet.  I feel good.  I feel whole and complete - all because of my new diet.  Imagine that!

Yeah, imagine that.                            

LOVE   *     LIGHT     *     PEACE