Ebb and flow
To decrease and then increase, as with tides; a decrease followed by an increase, as with tides. The fortunes of the major political parties tend to ebb and flow over time. The ebb and flow of democracy through history is a fascinating subject. (Ref: http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/ebb+and+flow)
I have been giving my Pendulum Theory post a lot of thought and I want to change something – sometimes things in live are due to the normal ebb and flow, the movement that is around our universe all the time. The difference is that is that we have to consciously sow seeds for the pendulum to swing, whereas the ebb and flow it the normal course of life over which we have very little control.
To illustrate, Mr Joe Soap is an alcoholic and he can sow seeds of health and healing into his life to have victory over his addition – i.e. the pendulum will swing.
However, today Mr Joe Soap is full of energy and activity, tomorrow he is tired and needs a bit of down time and quiet. The ebb and flow. And this is true all in nature and in life – one minute we’re having drought, the next we’re flooding. Then the wind is blowing, and then there is calm.
The fact is that there is an ebb and flow to life. There are highs and lows. There is bitter and sweet. There are gray days and sunny days and it’s all part of the package. If it were peaches, sunshine and roses all the time we’d probably get bored pretty quickly.
The second level is that we resist the mood and immediately try to “fix” it or escape it. In some instances this takes the form of eating, drinking, doping, buying, consuming or indulging our way out of the problem. In other instances, we run, we hide, we deny or we slam on the brakes and shut down completely.
The bottom line is that the idea that we’re supposed to be on a high all the time is misleading and it can cause us to have false expectations. It’s no wonder that we live in a world mired in addictive behaviors aimed at escaping the lows that we all inevitably experience.
What I’ve been learning is that the best way to cause a shift in our mood when the darkness hits is to completely surrender to the experience of it. This means facing the feelings, writing about them, talking about them with someone we trust and sometimes, even laughing about them.
The more we resist the valleys of life, the more entrenched in them we become. But when we honor our darker feelings and accept them as part of the nature of who we are, then they lose their hold on us. When we acknowledge our feelings, give them voice and allow ourselves to feel the ugly, scary stuff, then the darkness passes and gives way to light.
Most importantly, when we’re having one of those days, it’s an opportunity to practice loving ourselves more, to dig deeper and have greater faith in our dreams, to build up our spiritual endurance and press on in the face of fear and uncertainty. It’s an opportunity to learn about ourselves and grow by getting to know a side of ourselves that makes us uncomfortable.
There is an ebb and flow to life. Rather than fight it or resist it, let us embrace it. Let us adjust our expectations of what is “normal” and practice accepting the highs, the lows and everything in between.
There’s a lesson in all of it and it’s by fully being wherever we are that we can maintain a sense of inner peace and remain empowered regardless of what the day holds or what the weather outside looks like.
These two theories are so closely linked but I think it is important not to confuse the two.
- Ebb and Flow (rjr10036.typepad.com)
I am currently reading a book called Emotional Gravity by Angela de Souza. It is an excellent book, and although I have only just started the book, I can sense that I am already benefiting from the book. In it, she speaks about (well, what I have read thus far) how to train your mind, your emotions and your thoughts to be positive and not to focus on the negative. She speaks about how you need to look at the reasons for why you feel the way you do – forgive who you need to forgive and move on. And in moving on, you will sometimes have the old negative feelings and thoughts creeping through, you need to distract yourself and continually train your mind on what is positive and good.
She uses the example of a woman who grew up in a household where her father abused her mother, and totally belittled her. Her father would have numerous “girlfriends” and as a result, this woman grew up very insecure concerning her relationships with men. And even though she now has a husband who loves and adores her and is faithful to her, her insecurities rise up and mess in her marriage. She is suspicious of her husband, and constantly fights with him about his “flirting” with other women. She needs to realise where her insecurity comes from, and start training her mind to see her husband as he really is – someone who loves her and is faithful to her. It is this training of the mind that is so difficult, because all the negative and old insecurities can come creeping though at any moment. It is almost like being an alcoholic, in that you always have to be constantly aware of what can creep through to your conscious mind and you need to squash it out immediately. If you’re not attending to the roses in your garden, weeds will creep through without you even seeing them. You have to be vigilant.
I have been teased and ridiculed for being skinny my whole life and my parents would take me to a psychologist for being anorexic, and then moan at me the very next day for eating some cake because I’d get fat. My issues now with weight loss and being scared to lose weight stems directly from my childhood. However, I need to realise where my insecurity comes from, and then forgive my parents and all those who teased me and then comes the difficult part – train my thoughts, emotions and feelings to react positively. So, when someone compliments me and tells me I have lost weight, instead of reacting with fear and anxiety, I react positively and graciously and simply say, “Thank you.” That is what I need to train my mind, heart and thoughts to do. If I’m going to constantly think I’m going to have a meltdown when someone tells me I’ve lost weight, well then, that is exactly what I can expect to happen. However, if I train my mind and my emotions to be positive – even roll playing here could help – and to react graciously, then when someone tells me I have lost weight, I can actually take that as a compliment. Make sense?
Well, and now we get to my epiphany…
I was wondering where all my anxiety and fear came from, especially concerning my marriage. Well, the home environment that I grew up in was stressful and full of anxiety and if I had $ 1 for every time my parents threatened divorce or I heard that they’re only staying because of me (not my brothers, just me) I’d be a pretty wealth woman today. That is a lot of pressure for a young child – especially a shy and insecure child as is – to handle. So, all I knew growing up was this anxiety and stress (do not get me wrong, there were some good times, but they were totally overshadowed by this constant stress and anxiety). And that is all I know now. Now, I need to forgive my parents, and myself, and move forward. And start training my mind to think positively and manage all those “weeds” in my rose garden – I am not my mother. Nor is my husband my father. And we live in a relatively peaceful home – this is not the home of my childhood. And I need to keep training my mind; my thoughts and my emotions to think along those lines, until the anxiety of the past and the stress of my childhood no longer have any effect on me.
17 Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.
So then, banish anxiety from your heart and cast off the troubles of your body…