When we think of positive input, we think of words of affirmation from others that help propel us to achieve even more in life. In other words, the more positive encouragement we get from others, the more the light within us shines, causing us to continue to feel compelled to keep on going with our hopes and dreams. However, for us to be fully sated, we need to also provide ourselves with a level of self-positive reinforcement (input) that proves no matter who or what surrounds us, we have enough self-generated light to live by.
We oftentimes forget (in the chaos of our days and evenings) that we are the guardians of our internal harmony and it’s up to us to be choosy on the type of energy we let in (and let out). Believe it or not, the energy we let in and expend becomes part of our body. And just as the foods and drinks we allow ourselves to consume can have a profound effect on our being, so can the outside auras that we absorb.
For example, you have a bad experience in a relationship. Your guard is down and you let this negative energy in. You let it consume you, you get stressed or sad, and you tell yourself you’re not good enough. This propels you to feel empty inside, searching for something to fill that space. Some turn to food, some turn to alcohol and drugs, or some will sit on the phone for hours with a friend on “repeat”, talking themselves in circles about what had happened. The end result? You’ve gained weight, you have a hangover (or worse), and you may have temporarily lost a friend who doesn’t want that type of negative energy in their lives because you have called them one too many times and they can no longer help you. This type of cycle (because it is when you let this energy in) is infectious – it spreads to every part of your being and even if you pretend you’re okay, people can sense it. You have to learn to love yourself first.
Now let’s look at a positive example. Sure, you may be having a bad day at work but you are about to get on the phone with a customer. You have two choices: carry your mood over into your conversation or put a smile on your face and genuinely be happy for that 30 minutes or an hour, shoving all else out of your mind. You choose the latter. The customer senses your internal light (happiness) and they brighten up. It ends up being a productive call that leaves you feeling like you have made someone else’s day. Your worries and frustrations disappear. By the end of your work day, what made you upset is no longer an issue. You end up celebrating by going to the gym, or going to dinner with a friend, or even deciding to take a nice long, hot bath. In other words, you turned a negative into a positive and decided to reward yourself with something happy, proving that you know how to be the guardian of your internal harmony.
Learning how to spin negatives into positives can be super tough to do. I’ve had my own struggles with it, especially if I’m moving a million miles a minute and really don’t take the time to process how I’m feeling. So here are my tricks in keeping myself full of positive “input”:
- Read motivational books – I’m not even joking – I’ve become addicted. Reading Sheryl Sandberg’s book “Lean In” was incredibly inspirational – especially as a woman in tech myself. It helped me navigate through new territory as I prepared for the next chapter in my career, giving me a new level of confidence I didn’t know was in me. These types of books (and other motivational materials) provide us a new, positive, and affirmative perspective on ourselves that can only propel us in the right direction.
- If you’re having a bout of insomnia due to stress, write everything down that is bothering you and then tell yourself there is NOTHING you can do in that moment. And, make sure to tell yourself you can’t make any decisions when you’re not at your best, so go to bed. Just as they tell couples never go to bed angry, the same advice serves a purpose when we’re at odds with ourself. It works for me 9 out of 10 times 🙂
- Do something active that boosts endorphins. Make yourself a priority. You CAN find 30 minutes to work out. You CAN find time to take a bath. You CAN find time to make yourself a nice meal. Why? Because it reduces the stress and toxic buildup that can ultimately shorten our lives.
- Meditate. If you’re doing this meditation challenge, then you know what it is doing for you. Don’t give up on it either. This will not only completely open up the pathway for more positive input to flow in, but will also fill your pathway WITH positive input in the process.
To begin putting yourself in better charge of guarding what flows in and out of your life, start small. Pay a compliment forward, go for a walk, or find something that will make YOU happy, even if for 10 minutes. Practice this once a day until you start craving more and more positive input in your life, to the point you’re living fully in a good place that has YOU in charge of YOU.