Sunday, 2 March 2014

Negativity is never helpful..there is a better option!

‘If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you’ describes a great life skill. This is a quote from Rudyard Kiplings poem ‘If’ and he explains the importance of staying calm under pressure. Even changing an old habit requires the ability handle the emotions and thoughts that are convincing you otherwise. Often it is in the difficult times that true growth begins. As Mastin Kip says so well ‘Even though life doesn’t turn out how we want it to, it turns out how we need it to.’

Today I want to look at what helps a challenging situation and how destructive negativity is. Negativity is like being on a sinking ship and releasing the life raft without getting in it, its just not helpful! I cannot imagine any situation that improves with negativity and criticism. When we get ourselves in a negative space we can feel drained, stuck and frustrated by our circumstances. We can become disappointed in the people connected to the issue, a lack confidence in our selves grows and bad habits thrive in this headspace.

We need to rise above these thoughts and emotions because they only fuel fear and this can bring the people around us down and make the situation worse. One of the greatest challenges in life is questioning the way we are looking at a situation, challenging our knee jerk response to pressure and having the ability to keep our cool when things are not flowing the way we imagined it would.

Sometimes it is difficult to trust that better days are to come but the ability to keep our head up and see the situation turning around in the future is a sign of true leadership. Bad habits are easy, negativity is easy, criticism is easy, and blame is easy. Hope needs optimism, dreams need optimism, resilience needs optimism and optimism isn’t always easy.

Imagine a world where we encourage each other, applaud each other’s success, acknowledge great talents and nurture each other’s goals; a world where we embrace our differences and celebrate the simple act of trying. I want to see the schools that reward every child for their efforts, the workplaces that burst with motivation, the homes that nourish dreams, the relationships that depict true love.

Maybe I am a dreamer but sometimes you can just see the nonsense we all go on with and you can see that it really doesn’t have to be like this. As I sit here on my own in the house on this cool Monday morning I think of the times I have responded to challenges in my life with negativity compared to when I found it in myself to be calm and positive ‘when all about me where losing theirs.’ It actually feels empowering to be calm, energising, strengthening and wise.

I met Delamay Devi in Young yesterday at the Yoga Tree Studio. She is an incredible international yoga teacher who practices at an advanced level. Delamay demonstrated a headstand that had taken 2 years to master, after a daily practice.  She explained that the body is capable of so much more than we even realise and it is a wonderful thing to explore what your body can do.

At the all day workshop Delamay didn’t tell us to be positive, she didn’t give us a chance to complain or share our achievements. We simply practiced yoga together, opening the hips, the heart, activating the core and awakening something very powerful within us. What I realised yesterday is that optimism isn’t a few words, a little compliment or days good attitude. Optimism is a way of being, a way of living, and a choice that needs 'more effort'. But if we 'will' ourselves to follow the path of optimism, everything that we need eventually align with that energy and any negativity will simply have to drop away because it will not serve the journey of true hope, love, health and contentment.

(I will be interviewing Delamay Deva soon but her actions say to me ‘Just do what the body is asking you to do, to find optimum health and true empowerment’)

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