Our Inner State Reflects Our Outer State
Our inner reality often reflects our outer reality.
Inner Reality = Emotions, Thoughts, Mindset, our State of Consciousness
Outer Reality = Relationships, Career, Health, Possessions, Financial, and all Life Situations
How we handle ourselves within always reflects our actions and how we handle the outer circumstances.
And if you believe in the law of attraction, because everything is energy, our dominant state of consciousness will attract situations alike.
We get caught up in our outer reality and we often forget that we can choose our inner state.
How do you do that when the outside reality isn’t going well and we’re caught up with overwhelming emotions?
Challenges in life are inevitable, and sometimes it’s pretty hard to shift our vibe from fear to peace when we’re dealing with negative emotions.
We all feel down, cry, get mad, get worried, get jealous, get disappointed, get confused (even get insane at some point in our life).
No person is exempted with these kinds of emotions – not you, not me, not Tony Robbins, not Justin Bieber, not the person you can’t stop thinking about.
Does “think positive” work in such overwhelming situations?
I realized that it doesn’t.
I’m not preaching here, and I hope I don’t sound like it because these are things I also have to remind myself of, but I invite you to consider these ideas if they resonate with you as well.
So here’s what I learned.
The Misconceptions of “Think Positive”
When we’re caught up in negative situations, the worse thing we can do is resist our emotions.
No matter how we tell ourselves to “think positive,” the emotions are still there and may get even worse because of the resistance.
No matter how many times we tell ourselves or other people tell us that “It’s going to be okay.”, “You’re gonna be fine.”, “All is well.”
Well. It’s not.
The situation is not okay. You’re not okay.
And what’s the best thing you can do?
As hard as it sounds, I know.
But accept “what is.”
Surrender to “what is.”
Accept that there are things you can’t change, and that’s fine.
But, what does it really mean to ACCEPT it?
Why Positive Thinking Doesn’t Work When You’re Feeling Negative
When you’re feeling negative or overwhelmed with undesirable emotions, you can never shift your thoughts right away into positive.
When you do that, it’ll only backfire on you because it’s “resistance” of what is, resisting the present moment.
You don’t want to feel what you feel and you want to escape it, I get it.
But escaping and resisting your feelings will never get rid of it.
It will only do more bad than good and it prolongs the healing – and thus contaminate your relationships as well.
As Eckhart Tolle says, there are many pseudo escapes — work, drink, drugs, anger, projection, suppression, and so on — but they don’t free you from the pain..
But the good news is that there’s a way to shift your negative thoughts into positive ones, and it’s not the way you think.
It’s never about resisting what’s happening at the moment.
It’s the opposite.
Accept the now, fully, as if you’ve willingly chosen to.
If you’re feeling fear, pain, sadness, anger, accept them fully.
What “Accepting and Validating Your Emotions” Mean
Does it mean you listen and believe your negative thoughts?
Does it mean you tolerate a wave of anger by shouting at someone or decide on something out of disappointment?
You don’t have to act upon them.
It’s never ideal to decide something out of overwhelming emotions.
At least not right away when it’s not going to help.
But what it means to accept the emotions is to…
FEEL them… EMBRACE them…
…without listening to the story of the emotion.
What does this mean?
Feel it… don’t think about it!
Your FEELINGS and your THOUGHTS are separate.
Our full focus can only truly be in one place.
It’s either we put our focus on the feelings or we put our focus on the thoughts – not both.
(Note: They feed each other. The more you listen to the unstoppable negative thoughts, the more it’ll feed negative emotions, and the more you feel those emotions intensify the thoughts. That’s why they get worse or prolong the healing when you let it take over control – they feed each other to keep each other alive.)
You can’t stop the thoughts. So, instead of resisting or trying to stop them, there are two ways you can choose to do depending on which one is easier for you:
1. Our ego-mind loves to create scripts in our head that lives in the past and future, and they are mostly negative because it loves drama. Just let them come, watch them without judgment and be aware that you are not your thoughts – you are the master of your thoughts.
2. Put all your focus on the emotion. Feel the tension on your chest, feel the pain, feel the sensation. Do not let your thoughts judge them as “negative.” Express it if necessary, cry it out, but don’t create a script in your mind around it. Give all your attention to the feeling, not to the person, event, or situation that seems to have caused it.
When you do either of these, you’ll break the cycle and they won’t be able to feed each other.
Personally, the 2nd one is what works great for me and sometimes almost instantly.
I’ve never successfully done the 1st one without doing the 2nd one (one at a time) but either way may work for you.
If you want to dig deep about these steps, I recommend the book, The Language of Emotional Intelligence written by Jeanne Segal, Ph.D.
In the 1st option, when you acknowledge your thoughts that they are mind-created, accepting them without judgment and then letting them go, it’ll give up creating more stories that feed the emotion.
In the 2nd option, when you are truly focused on the emotion, you’re putting away your focus on the thoughts, which means it won’t be able to feed more negative emotions until both will eventually dissipate.
That’s what “mindfulness” is about (1st option).
And that’s what “acceptance” of your feelings truly mean (2nd option).
When the emotions finally dissipate and you’re relaxed, peace will naturally flow to you and that’s when positive thoughts can truly come in…
…that’s when you can finally truly shift to “Positive Thinking.”
So, whenever you feel overwhelmed, step back… give yourself a few minutes, or hours, or even few days depending on the situation.
1st step: Awareness that you have a choice and acknowledging your thoughts and emotions.
2nd step: Watch your mind OR feel your emotions.
3rd step: When you finally feel calm, that’s when you can SHIFT and “think positive.” That’s when possible solutions, better response or better decisions will emerge – in other words, CLARITY.
“Life isn’t as serious as the mind makes it to be.”Eckhart Tolle
It’s important to remember that our inner state should not depend on our outer state.
And this is not a one-time thing.
Sometimes you have to do the steps again and again.
I personally have to remind myself of these.
Because again, we’re HUMAN.
If you have questions or ideas to share, please comment them down below so I can reply (I won’t promise to reply to each but I do read them).
You’re still here reading!
If you got this far and have read every message of this article all the way here, I hope it helped you and I genuinely “thank you” for taking your time on this. 🙂
Until my next article…