If you’ve read any sort of self-help book, been in therapy or hired a coach, attended any sort of new age or self-development workshop, googled how to be happy, etc. etc… you’ve probably seen this idea come up over and over again:
Our thoughts shape our reality.
Yes? You with me?
I’ll be the first to say I wholeheartedly agree with this statement, AND.
Thoughts, emotions, judgements, stories, and especially the energy behind all of these things is what shapes and creates the reality you are currently existing in.
These things make up layers of our energetic and cellular coding and basically run the show.
As I said, I absolutely believe our thoughts shape our reality.
What I DON’T believe is that positive thinking is the answer. It’s also ABSOLUTELY NOT a sign that you are more evolved or improved than anyone else.
“Just think positive.”
Ever heard that one before? Thought so.
I understand where this is coming from. Really, I do. How great would that be if all you had to do was will yourself to think something different and then bam, everything changes for the better?
The thing about that is, we aren’t really much in control of our thoughts. As mentioned above, our emotions, judgements, stories about ourselves and the world, habits, patterns, and the energy behind all of that is what creates the thoughts in our heads.
So when you are in the throes of negativity, can’t shake your funk, feel like a total failure, etc. etc…
Trying to think positive thoughts to fix it or make changes is like putting a pretty tablecloth on top of piles of trash and clutter on your coffee table and calling it clean. It might look a little better on the surface, but all that junk is still just waiting there for you.
Far too often people who have heard that positive thinking is the answer try waaaaaaaay too hard to force themselves to think happy thoughts when sometimes, that’s just not f*cking going to happen. Or, it feels like a complete lie, which then tells your body/ brain/ energy system that the happy thought is a lie, which actually solidifies the negativity/ stuckness/ frustration as your reality.
Yeah, how about we STOP doing that, shall we?
Because the thing is, and hear me out on this one, that tension, that negative energy, that stuck feeling- they are here for a reason.
Everything in our lives is happening for us.
Everything in our lives is happening for us. Including the “bad” and “negative” stuff.
So instead of trying to cover up or push away the negative stuff, what happens if you let it in? What happens if you look at it and engage with it?
Any patterns you have in your life that show up as negativity, whether it be an emotionally draining relationship or job, chronic neck pain, exhaustion, loneliness, not liking your body- every single one of these is an opportunity to connect with your soul.
The negative emotions, patterns, experiences- these are all arrows pointing the way toward something that isn’t congruent with your soul and what truly lights you up and is meant for you in this lifetime.
We receive these negative things because our bodies, our souls, the universe- they are trying to get our attention and say, “Hey! There’s a different possibility here! Please look!”
And this is where negative experiences, emotions, patterns, people become a vehicle for soul work - the work that allows you to be the most alive, vibrant, true version of yourself. When you choose to acknowledge that you are being sent a message, and decide to look at it and learn to interpret the messages.
This is a big piece of what I do with my clients, by the way- guide them to learn how to interpret the messages sent to them by their bodies, their souls, the universe, and also how to act on those messages and make choices that lead to more joy, more ease, more love, and more freedom. Help them clear off and organize the whole coffee table, if you will, so it looks and feels fabulous, rather than just throw a tablecloth on top of the junk .
Next time you realize you’re feeling stuck or tense or out of sorts…
Next time you notice yourself trying to make a stuck feeling or an emotion or frustration or any other form of ‘negativity’ go away by repeating positive thoughts…
Next time a lot of external negativity shows up in your life…Here’s what to do instead:
Acknowledge it! Name it! Bring full attention to the fact that you feel stuck, that there’s a lot of negative energy, whatever is going on. Allow your full awareness to rest in that reality.
So often we try and push aside that which doesn’t “feel good”- and will try anything to “just make it go away”. Hence why positive thinking is so popular.
For a full breath cycle (inhale. exhale.) bring all of your attention to whatever is YUCK in your life right now.
Talk to it. Ask why it’s here, what it’s trying to show or tell you. Even if you don’t receive a clear answer, or any answer at first, asking creates the space to invite understanding and interpretation. This will help you pinpoint the message and understand where this particular thing originates from.
Ask yourself, “For me to be fully me, congruent with my soul, to feel powerful, alive, and joyful- what needs to happen here?” Depending on what kind of negativity you’re working with here (physical symptoms, emotions, a person, etc.), this answer will vary quite a bit.
Do the thing. Make a different choice. It may be right away, it may having similar experiences and making many choices over time, it may be for down the line.
You can choose to let negativity take over, as something happening to you. You can try to force it to go away by piling positive thoughts on top of it. Or, you can see it as an opportunity and a gift to work with on your way to more fully inhabiting your body, more fully expressing yourself, more fully living your life uniquely as you.
And if you want some support with this- if you are curious about what might be possible for you if you not only had ongoing tools and practices for doing the soul work provided by a highly intuitive human (that’s me) who has been there before, but you also had a cheerleader in your corner to work with you through the tough stuff- Let’s have a conversation.
If you’re ready to explore what it might look like to understand the messages your body and soul send you, if you would love to not only understand them but act on them in a way that provides you more joy, more fun, more freedom, more possibilities in your life- let’s chat!