“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” Aristotle
As human beings, we are constantly bombarded with fear and negativity everyday. All we have to do is turn on the news, read the newspaper, or check the Internet. We may even find ourselves addicted to the incessant drama of the world, the people around us, or our own negativity. Unfortunately, many of us reinforce even more negativity when we co-miserate with our family, friends, and co-workers. So, it is important to remind ourselves that “misery does love company” and that all it takes to empower negative is more negative.
We have the ability to move beyond this addiction to fear and negativity by practicing compassionate detachment. We can open our hearts in loving compassion for ourselves and others and let go of getting caught up in the drama or suffering of everyday life. It is a great opportunity for us to see what does and doesn’t work in our lives, the futility of trying to fix the past, and to make distinctive and more positive choices for our future. This requires focusing our energies on the positive aspects of our lives and trust that all of us can transcend anyone or anything that blocks our spiritual path.
Many of us who are deeply sensitive are dealing with compassion fatigue. This sensitivity to other’s energies can create feelings of spiritual depression, anxiety, and lethargy. So we can reframe these feelings as a time of “deep rest” so that we don’t become bogged down or beat ourselves up for not being or doing enough. At these times, we must affirm that we are enough and give ourselves the restorative rest we need.
It is also critical at this particular time that we create energetic boundaries so that we keep from being sucked into this whirlwind of anger, fear, and negativity. To do so, we have to be discerning of whom we spend time and share our energies, and which environments we inhabit. Because we tune in energetically to our environment, it is important to carefully consider the location in which we live.
Like a periscope in a submarine, we must lift up out of the shadowy aspects of human consciousness and elevate our physical perspective to a more spiritual one. We must remain clear that we are first and foremost spiritual beings navigating the sea of human processes. Trust that love opens our hearts, raises our vibration, and dissolves negativity.
You can transcend fear, anger and negativity by allowing things to be without resisting or avoiding the changes. Give yourself the freedom to follow your heart and move through your day without trying to control or force anything to happen. When you give way to control, you give away your self-control. Therefore, soften your position or opinions and trust yourself to create positive intentions, make discerning choices, and let your light expand out into the world.
Invite in blessings of love, peace, and abundance and let go of any fear, anger and negativity. Resolve to complete every moment with gratitude, compassion, and forgiveness for everyone and everything that has brought you to this point in your life.
Sustaining a sense of humor cultivates lightheartedness. It connects us to the deepest reaches of our soul and is crucial in healing. Most people express that they would rather die than live a life without laughter. Research shows that laughter lowers blood pressure, increases vascular blood flow, reduces stress which in turn reduces anxiety and depression. Most importantly, when we laugh with others, we share a sense of interconnectedness and belonging which assists in healing as well.
For me, laughter that originates deep within and assists us in communing with others in an intimate way is soul laughter. Soul laughter lets us share our sheer vulnerability with another. It communicates a loving presence heart to heart without spoken words: “I am present and share this moment with you.” Writer, Anne Lamott suggests that such “Laughter is a bubbly, effervescent form of holiness.”
Maintaining a sense of humor assists us in moving outside of whatever is happening in our lives so we can assess situations with healthy detachment. Every experience we have, no matter how trivial-an impatient driver who cuts us off in traffic, an irritable waiter who will not look our way, the unexpected loss of a close relationship, or a downpour that drenches us to the bone-can be viewed as something wonderful, humorous, or simply an opportunity to discover more about ourselves.
Here is an example of sustaining a sense of humor so that I remained lighthearted while preparing for a book signing in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Right before leaving on my trip, I received an e-mail notifying me that a shipment of books I had sent to a distributor had arrived damaged and covered in oil. They needed the shipment yesterday so I quickly packed another box of books and this time sent them through UPS instead of the US Postal Service. This time I also remembered to insure them.
I arrived home in time to meet my dad who was driving with me to Ann Arbor. As I opened the back door excited to be on our way, my golden retriever, Cammi dashes through the doorway deciding that this would be a great time to explore the neighborhood. As I chased her through several backyards, she gleefully flees from me reveling in our new role as a flight risk. When I finally caught up to her, treat in hand, I felt success but then I fell. Did I mention I was wearing linen white pants?
After a challenging drive with my dad who wanted to share with everyone in Michigan that they were bad drivers, I arrived at the bookstore ready to greet the eleven hundred people who had responded on Facebook that they were attending the signing. Yet, the eleven hundred soon turned into eleven including my dad. On the bright side, I was still able to videotape my presentation except that my camcorder chose that moment to die and the backup was two hundred miles away.
My presentation went well and just as I was letting out a sigh of relief and getting ready to wrap things up, a young University of Michigan graduate student decides to ask a question. I didn’t realize questions could actually last fifteen minutes. Isn’t there a time limit, or a rule of etiquette about the length of questions? By the time he was finished, I had completely forgotten what his question was; yet, obviously it was to make a point. So, I answered him with a smile and the first thing that came to mind.
I finally made it home around midnight happy in my heart even after my dad pointed out that after gas, dinner, and the earlier loss of books, my profit was the change in his pocket. This day was perfect just as it had unfolded. Being flexible, keeping a sense of humor, and allowing spontaneity and playfulness, sustained the flow of love energy through me supporting responsive rather than reactive choices.