Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Prevention and Protection

There has been an influx of industry centered around protection and prevention. Corporations have loss prevention departments. Our homes and cars have alarm systems. More women are carrying mace and pepper spray. Self-defense class registrations are on the rise. Fear has prompted us to take action, be prepared, and practice prevention. While we see the logic in protecting our property and physical safety, we have not taken the same level of responsibility when it comes to our mental and emotional health.

We have all encountered someone who isn't healthy for us. Whether it is a friend, former lover, sibling, parent, or other relative, at least one person demands that we create boundaries. This certainly includes those who have physically harmed us, but physical harm isn't the only sign of dysfunction. There are some who have harmed us with their negative words and sentiments. Some have harmed us with their encouragement or pressure to participate in negative behaviors. Some have harmed us by their habitual disappointment. Harm, whether physical or emotional can have a debilitating impact. It changes the way we view the world and our place in it. When we allow the same negativity into our lives, we perceive negativity in everything, including for our future and within ourselves.

If you have alarm systems for your physical property or purchased mace or pepper spray or taken a self-defense class it demonstrates that you place value on your safety. However, if you truly value your well being, you have to also value your mind and emotions. Before you digest the words and opinions of others, consider whether they are helpful or harmful and more importantly, if those words are true. As you assess levels of investment in your friendships and relationships, consider how valued and respected you feel when in the presence of those friends and love interests. Take measures to protect your mental health and prevent the theft of your joy and peace.

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