“Dwelling on the negative simply contributes to its power.” ~Shirley Maclaine
Have you ever felt like you were drowning in negativity?
Maybe you were feeling down on yourself, but instead of pulling yourself up, you made yourself feel bad for struggling with yourself in this way.
Or maybe you made a mistake, but instead of forgiving yourself, you beat yourself up over it, rehashing everything you should have done.
It’s all too easy to get stuck in a cycle of negativity. Even if we practice yoga, meditate, or start our mornings with positive affirmations, we can fall down, and find ourselves wondering why it feels so hard to get back up.
As I mentioned last week, I spent most of my life in this type of cycle, and despite the tremendous progress I’ve made over the years, I still fall into this trap sometimes.
When this happens, I might be tempted to think myself in circles—to essentially let my feelings paralyze me while I dwell on the same fears and frustrations over and over again. And then I might wonder why I feel so stuck.
The truth is we feel paralyzed when we paralyze ourselves, and we can set ourselves free if we stop obsessing about why we can’t.
We don’t need to identify concrete solutions to all our problems. We don’t need to create the illusion of control amid uncertain circumstances. We just need to accept that our biggest problem is fighting the way things are, and then consciously choose to stop battling ourselves.
We just have to choose to be in this moment instead of scheming toward something better
This moment is a new opportunity to let go of everything that’s stressing us.
This moment is a new chance to take a deep breath so that we don’t feel overwhelmed and frustrated.
This moment is a tiny lifetime, all in itself, and we have the choice to live it.
We can trudge through mental quicksand, feeling bad and wishing we didn’t; or we can realize that stewing isn’t even slightly productive, and then consciously choose to let go and be free.
Photo by Alex [Fino] LA