This week, I had planned on having my regular Tuesday blog entry with an additional youtube video to accompany it. The video was intended to be a lighthearted demonstration of things you can do to lighten your mood which contained concrete demonstrations of techniques like "Theta Yogic Breathing" side by side with silliness like wearing a tiara or sliding down a kid's slide. That didn't work out. So today, I don't have a video to present along with this blog. But I do have an example of not going negative to tell. The reason the video didn't work out is largely due to a lack of planning on my part. In the past, when I have posted something on youtube like that, I have scripted out at least a rough outline of what I wanted to say and blocked out where I wanted each shot to take place. This video, inspired by the promise of tiaras and swing sets, was much more casual. The end result just didn't get the more polished, yet fun, flavor for which I had been aiming. I could have tailspun into a huge self hate fest. "I can't do anything right! I'm a failure! What was I thinking even trying anything like that? OMG I'm so ugly. Who would want to see me on a video anyway?"
Honestly, if you had known me somewhere around 20 years ago, all of those things would have been said, plus many more. Now, what I do instead is to treat that video shoot like a dress rehearsal. Evaluate what worked and what didn't work. Since I had already promoted the hoped for video on Facebook, I "shared" one of the funnier clips there. (https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10203290788104749&set=vb.1661313822&type=2&theater¬if_t=like)
Sooooo … One of our first tasks is to identify exactly what is negativity. Just last night, while joking around, I realized the last 10 statements which had come out of my mouth could be seen as being very negative. I had been thinking of them as more of a stand up routine. Continuing in the same vein, I simply added this comment, "Excuse me Universe, I really don't mean any of this as a complaint and I'm not intending to be negative. Consider this my warm up act." I believe that is a valid way of looking at the situation. What you say matters immensely. The only things which might matter just a tiny bit more are why you thought or said it and what emotions you were feeling at the time.
Some negativity is easy to spot. Perhaps it's the worrier who keeps you from sleeping. The voice who counts your bills and is sure you won't have enough money. Perhaps it's the critic who tells you you're old or fat or just unattractive. Or the one who tells you you're not good enough or smart enough.
Some negativity is more pervasive and is so a part of our society we can never completely escape it. An easy way to explain it, I think, is to consider the now very famous Mother Theresa quote.
"I was once asked why I don't participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will never do that, but as soon as you have a pro-peace rally, I'll be there."
She is demonstrating a core principle of the Law of Attraction. Focus on what you want instead of focusing on what you don't want. Simply by saying "anti-war" you are focusing on war. Words have power. When you give something a name, you give it power. When you invoke the name (or say it,) you give it power. An anti-war rally is giving "war" power. Think about the Law of Attraction. Power equals energy. Energy translates into vibrational frequencies. We are always trying to transmit at a positive frequency rather than a negative one. So Mother Theresa was telling you not to talk about war, but to talk about peace. Put your energy into a positive frequency rather than a negative one.
There is a sad but inescapable side track I find it hard not to glance at. It is one thing to consider this on a personal level. We can be as present and aware as we can. We can notice the words we use and the feelings behind saying them. We can learn to become more positive. On a societal level is where it becomes very disturbing. We simply do not have "pro-peace rallies" at any level. Overwhelmingly we focus on what we don't want. I think we do that out of our fear. We're afraid if we don't acknowledge the negative, if we don't speak up about it, it will win. Well we are speaking up about it. We are acknowledging it. Yet it isn't losing or going away. Maybe it's time to try something different.
Anyway, on a personal level, we can do something different. An easy first step to detoxifying yourself from negativity, is to take a fast from watching the news or stop watching it altogether. I keep up with the news by simply following a couple of key news sources on Facebook and letting them scroll through my Home page like anything else I am following. There are times that still ends up too much news and I cut a few sources. For some people this will be a very hard, if not impossible, thing to do. We're afraid of looking stupid. We think if everybody else knows there was an earthquake in another country, yet we do not, we'll be judged as being less or stupid somehow. Some part of us believes it is important to know about everything that happens.
Let's break it down with the second part first. It is impossible to know everything that happens. End of story. But the more relevant something that happens is to you, the sooner you will inevitably know it. If an earthquake is happening in your city, you will probably know it faster than anyone can tell you. Working in a circular pattern out from your city, the closer it is, the more it may impact you and the more you may impact it. The closer it is, the sooner you will know about it naturally. For one thing, while you are listening to music or watching a movie instead of the news, the more local it is to you, the more likely they will interrupt your programming with the news. Think about it. If the only news you got was when they interrupt with an Emergency Broadcast Notice or an Amber Alert, is it possible that might actually be enough?
I know, I know. If you didn't listen to more news than that, how could you keep track of Obama or Monsanto or whatever is your personal pet peeve? First, "Impeach Obama" and "Boycott Monsanto." Are those negative energy or positive energy? Wouldn't the positive energy statements be closer to something about electing Effective Honest Politicians and supporting healthy produce and foods?
Focus on what you want not on what you don't want.
We already know that we live in a very negative society. Rather than thinking about what we can do to be profitable as a country, we focus on the debt. Nearly every rally is an anti-something rally. An obvious and very human skill set for avoiding something is to leave the vicinity. Remove yourself from the room. Or in the case of society and the news, simply turn it off or unplug. Trust the news that you need will find its way to you.
Oh and as for the worry you will be judged. Anybody who is judging you, are they in a positive state or a negative state? Your worry. Negative or positive? Back to that negative voice in the head. Those racing thoughts that keep you awake at night and keep you from peace and self confidence. There is a technique for those called "Theta Yogic Breathing." Your brain has two hemispheres. Left and right. The theory is, as I understand it, that racing thoughts occur because your brain is firing rapid fire from the same hemisphere rather than shifting back and forth between them. Your nose has two holes. Using "Theta Yogic Breathing," you intentionally breathe in through one nostril and out through the other in order to break up the one hemisphere stream and get your thoughts oscillating again.
What you do is: First, test your nostrils. Frequently one side will be slightly clogged up and harder to breathe through. Choose the more open nostril. Putting a finger over the opposite nostril and plugging it, breathe in for a count of 3. Hold that breath and pinch both nostrils for a count of 6. Put your finger over the nostril you breathed in through and breathe out the opposite nostril for a count of 3. Repeat this for 7 breaths.
Any of these anti-negativity techniques you hear about or learn, some will work well for some people while other people will respond better to something else. The trick is finding the techniques that help you. If you find that "Theta Yogic Breathing" works well for you, there are many other breathing techniques you might want to look into. Some can be very effective at diminishing your negativity, while others have been used by athletes and can be very motivational. For now, if the breathing really works for you, consider this variation. During the part where you are holding your breath, visualize your negativity in that breath you are holding. Perhaps it is a dark violent or ugly color. Perhaps it is pale and sickly looking. Perhaps thick and smokey. Whatever that negativity looks like to you, picture it being held and then expelling from your body on that outward breath. Picture a beautiful clean and vibrant opposite color for that air you are breathing in.
Ok .. maybe next time I'll have that video. Or maybe not. Let's both be surprised.