Digestion is defined as “the process by which food is converted into substances that can be absorbed and assimilated by the body”. It is also defined as “the assimilation of ideas or information; understanding”, but this second definition leaves out a crucial step
So let’s take the former definition and play with it. What if digestion was “the process by which [experiences are] converted into [information and ideas] that can be absorbed and assimilated by the [mind]”. This definition feels much more like what happens throughout our lives as we experience the peaks and troughs. Just as some foods are easily digestible, so are some aspects of life (some much more than others!)
I found out recently that I have PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome) and although for some women this may be digested as “very common”, for me it was a “serious reality check”. I decided that this was a sign that I needed to change my life. The main reason for this type of “digestion” is because of my grandmother. She is 85 years old and has been living with diabetes for the last ten years. She is very overweight, and spends most of her day feeling pain in her legs as a result of carrying too much weight in her stomach area.
After being diagnosed with PCOS, I made a choice to cut grains, dairy and sugar from my diet. I will do anything to make sure I live healthily and happily into my 80s.
Now, going back to the definition of digestion. In the first definition, digestion is a three-step process: first something happens to us; second, this experience turns into a thought or idea; and finally, it is assimilated or understood by our mind. What this means is, you have a choice.
You may have recently lost your job. You may have found out your wife is cheating on you. You may have won the lottery. You may have had an argument with your best friend. You may have found out you are having triplets. You may have heard that 50 people lost their lives in a hurricane.
After these “experiences”, we are given a choice of how we react, how we deal with them, and in more technical turns, how we will process these experiences into thoughts and therefore assimilate them into the mind.
I am giving you a choice. Even if you feel like you’re stuck, even if you feel like the walls are crushing you, even if you feel like you have no options, you do. Similar to when you put food into your body, your body decides how to “digest it” and after this decision, it creates a new substance.
This is where you can make the decision, too.
What thought do you want to have? What idea do you want to have? At the end of the day, it’s important to remember that everything passes through your body – everything gets digested. This means you don’t have to define yourself by your experiences, thoughts or ideas.
You just have to choose.