We are told to "let it go", to stay in the moment. Everyone and their brother is touting The Secret or The Law Of Attraction or even The Power Of Positive Thinking. So much is said about attracting what we think about, that our circumstances are the result of past thoughts. This advice is everywhere and for many it is almost a punishment, a creator of guilt.
April is National Anxiety Month. My clients, many of them, don't need just a month to be aware of anxious feelings. They could fill a calendar year with stories of moments that produce those feelings. Just last night, I had a client visit with me who is a big believer in "what you think, you attract". (We will call her Dorothy for our purposes here.) Dorothy has created dream boards, used affirmations and visualized positive changes in her life. Still, her life has given her an unexpected twist. She was becoming paralyzed in fear. She had an overwhelming sense of doom in regards to this particular situation.
Dorothy asked me, "I know I am supposed to stay in the now, but how?" For most of us, it is a tennis match in our mind. The good thoughts get returned with fear, back and forth. Think a good though, fear creeps in. Try to push fear away, it takes grip. Try harder to push it back, it takes an even stronger hold, all consuming, mind numbing, thought controlling. The fear wins.
Add to the feeling of defeat, guilt and finally shame. After all, we are "supposed" to control our own thoughts, thinking only good thoughts. Fear, guilt, shame, the Hat Trick of negativity.
Dorothy looked at me with all sincerity and said, "How do you remain so positive? How do you prevent feelings of fear?" I laughed and replied, "I don't". I have my moments of fear and doubt. I am hardwired, just like everyone else I know to go to the negatives. To play the what if game. I have just learned to recognize when it begins, to notice the triggers and to go into action, creating change.
On numerous times, I have written and spoken about the value of humor in any given situation. It is a great tool to have. Another possibility is to change activities. Exercise is a great
de stressor, thought re arranger. I have solved and resolved many issues when out for a brisk walk or bike ride. The change in scenery allows me to change my perspective, not to mention those feel good brain chemicals that are released through exercise.
I often remind myself to stay in the moment, by taking deep, slow breathes. I ask myself if I am safe in this moment. In this moment, are all my basic needs met? Breathe again. What is right in my life now? What am I grateful for here and now?
I focus on one small change I can make, what would it be? How do I change? How is my perception different in regards to this situation, so that I can allow peace in my life? I know that I am not in control of everything that occurs in my life, nor am I responsible. It is only my perception that I can change, my attitude.
I started writing this early this morning. Life and activities interrupted me and delayed me. I just kept saying, blogging is not my life, it is simply a part of my life. So, while waiting for a client tonight,who was delayed by traffic, I thought I finished what I was meant to post. Thank heavens for heavy traffic. You see, she revealed to me so many miracles and possibilites in my life when she arrived. A dear friend of mine, from 20 years ago, is married to a colleague of hers. I hope to make contact again, with a fabulous, funny individual. Then a former client of mine called with news of changes she was making, that just happen to fit into something I was thinking might be useful in my life. Gee, I wonder if this thought change stuff really works? Do you think I attracted some positive results? Hmmmm.....