So, here we are, and I see him on the cover of this magazine, and I’m reminded of how he’s still this trusted, famous doctor and didn’t really face any consequences. He still has his TV show and makes insane amounts of money. Even though John Oliver and his team explained this whole situation, and they have over 15 million YouTube views on the segment (plus however many people watched it on HBO), Dr. Oz is living pretty.
I don’t know about you, but I got this negative-leaning brain, and one negative thought can trigger a ton of other negative thoughts. I see how Dr. Oz is still out there doing his thing, and I’m reminded of everything else that happens in this world that I think should matter, and it clearly doesn’t.
What do I mean? Well, many of you know me from my YouTube channel The Rewired Soul, so let’s use some YouTube examples from 2019.
Danielle Cohn was exposed as being a 13-year-old girl claiming to be older, but nothing happened to her or her awful mom.
Cole Carrigan accused Austin McBroom of the Ace Family of rape, and as of writing this, it’s been a couple of weeks and nobody cares anymore.
Onision has been problematic for years from filming a young woman having mental health issues and seizures to grooming another young woman, but not much is happening with that.
Remember that guy Romeo LaCoste the tattoo artist who was publicly defending talking extremely inappropriately to his underaged fans? Well, he’s still around.
When this chain reaction of negative thoughts happens, I turn into Eeyore from Winnie the Pooh just moping around thinking things like:
“Why do we even bother.”
And that’s a bad headspace for me to be in. More importantly, it’s a bad place for any of us to be in.
Start Rationing Your F*cks
As many of you know, I love me some books. A book that kept getting recommended to me was The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson, and I pushed off reading it for so long. I’ve noticed this weird trend where self-help authors put a cuss word in the title, and I always get this weird vibe like, “Hey. I’m cool and edgy, so you should definitely read my book!” It reminds me of how teachers will sit in their chair backward to show the kids that they’re relatable.
Early this year, when shit hit the fan in my life and hundreds of thousands of people on the internet were coming at me in full force, I was desperate for help and advice, so I finally got this book by Mark Manson. Once I started reading it, I realized how wrong I was about the book, and I guess this is why you’re never supposed to judge a book by its cover (sorry, but I had to toss in that dad joke).
I got the book in hopes of it teach me to just stop giving a f*ck about everything. If I didn’t care about anything, I couldn’t be hurt by anyone or anything. That’s actually how I lived my life for many years, and it kept me protected from being hurt, but it also made me miserable. At this point, I didn’t care though. I wanted this dude Mark Manson to teach me to not care again, but that’s not what the book was about, and he makes that very clear from the beginning.
The book isn’t about not giving a f*ck. It’s really about being really frugal about the amount of f*cks you give. It’s about doing an inventory of your life and clearing out all the pointless stuff we all give way too many f*cks about.
So, as I was standing there, getting irrationally angry at the picture of Dr. Oz on the cover of that magazine in the grocery store while getting Tristin some medicine, I asked myself, “Why do you even give a f*ck about this Chris?”
Then, I started thinking of all those other chain reaction thoughts that I had, and I asked myself, “Chris, do any of these other things deserve your f*cks?” After that, I started thinking about the dumb comments I get, and I’m like, “Wait…why do I give a f*ck about those?”
Then, I started thinking about you…yes, you.
I started asking myself how much you, the reader, give a f*ck about things that don’t deserve any f*cks. So, maybe we can do this little experiment together and see if we can redirect our f*cks towards some things that actually matter.
How to Build Paradise
How much time are you waisting caring about things that literally don’t matter? How much time do we all waste letting things rent space in our heads that don’t matter? And why do we do it?
Well, my theory is that we start doing this at some point in our life because our values get all twisted. We all have values, but they’re metaphorically buried in the back of our junk drawer. We got these important values that give us meaning, purpose and actual things to give a f*ck about, but we can’t even see them because of all the other nonsense in our brains.
So what should we give a f*ck about?
Well, it’s going to be different for all of us, but as I stood in line at the grocery store, I thought of a way we can kind of narrow it down and figure it out, so here’s the thought experiment I want you to do with me.
Some evil wizard comes up to you, and he’s like, “I’m going to banish you to a deserted island for the rest of your life.” But, for some reason, he adds something else to your banishment. “You can have 5 things on this island. This can be any five things because I’m a wizard. These things can be material or not material. You can literally have any five things.” Although it seems like it sucks that you’re being banished, this will become your mental health paradise.
What would you ask for? And try not to overthink this.
Here’s what I’d want on the deserted island:
“But Chris, are you allowed to make some of those 5 things something plural such as friends and family?”
I told you not to overthink it! And plus, if it could be 6 things, I’d include your well-being too because I’m nice like that.
Anyways, the point of this is that it helped me snap back into reality and realize what really matters to me in my life. What matters to me is the people in my life who love me, and I hope for their well-being. I also love knowledge, so that’s why the books are in there.
Now, what're your 5 things? Is it happiness? Is it a peaceful mind? Is it something for your loved ones?
Lastly, think of the endless amount of stuff that isn’t those 5 things, and stop giving so many f*cks about them.
I’m not saying we shouldn’t care about others either. Obviously, I spend a lot of my time trying to help complete strangers like you. It brings me happiness and fulfillment. I love helping people with their mental and emotional well-being. The point of this experiment is that I can start looking at what’s going on in my world and start prioritizing what to give my time to, and I can also make a choice of what I won’t let rent space in my head.
So care, and care deeply. Care about a lot of things. Care about a TON of things, but for as many things you should care about, there are billions of other things that are bothering you that you really shouldn’t care about.
Help One Person at a Time
Like I said, when I get into a bad headspace, it makes me want to give up. All of those situations I listed earlier from YouTube are pretty serious situations, but if I think about helping everyone, I get overwhelmed and can’t help anyone. So, these things definitely matter to me, but in order to be useful, I have to calm my emotions down and ask what I can and can’t control.
A great example is my mission to help people with their mental health. I see the number of overdose deaths, suicides and all of the other “deaths from despair”, and it can make me just want to not take action because it’ seems like an impossible goal to reverse all of the awful stuff going on in the world.
Instead, I ask myself what I can do, and by now, you’ve heard me talk plenty about having an internal locus of control. What I can do is try to help one person at a time, and I was able to do that in 12-step meetings, and then I was able to help even more people working at the rehab. Now that I’m utilizing YouTube, social media, my writing and more, I can help even more people. My goal is to help as many people as possible, but at the same time, my goal is to try to help just one person. It helps me not to lose hope and continue caring for humanity as a whole.
But, earlier this year when I was really going through it, those things on my desert island list saved my life because those were the things that mattered. I lost 10s of thousands of subscribers, had 100s of thousands of people hating me, and I lost my primary source of income, but none of those things mattered because I constantly have to remind myself that most things that happen don’t really matter that much.
So, what will you be bringing to your mental health paradise?
If you’re looking for affordable therapy from the comfort of your own home, I personally use BetterHelp online therapy. I have a badass therapist, and I highly recommend this easy-to-use service. By clicking here to sign up, it helps support the work I do as well.
Originally published at https://www.therewiredsoul.com on November 9, 2019.