When optimism keeps you stuck
As important as positive thinking and focus are to creating outcomes that you desire, there are times when optimism is quite problematic.
I see a lot of women try to actively push away all contrary thoughts to make the unwanted, unhealthy, or uncomfortable things in their lives somehow shrink — and more of the wanted things somehow grow.
They’re using optimism to avoid and escape the things they’d rather not experience again. It’s a highly intelligent choice to find ways to sidestep pain and discomfort. But this is not how positive thinking and focus are meant to be used.
Optimism becomes troublesome when it’s used to ignore, avoid, deny, override or bypass something that you are resistant to. It’s a form of wishing and hoping that if you no longer give your attention to something unwanted, that it will somehow magically disappear forever.
After all, if we’re living in alignment with the Law of Attraction, this is what we’re supposed to do, right? Be optimistic, focus on the positive, and eradicate all negative thinking stat!
But if there are things that you are avoiding, denying, and overriding, or wish you could just bypass altogether, then whether you are aware of it or not, a great deal of your attention is still focused on the very things you don’t want.
When you’re in active avoidance of something — even if it’s through optimism and positive thinking — forcing a positive attitude won’t help the unwanted things go away. Nor will it help you to have more of what you really want. This is because using optimism in this way is using it as a tool to avoid and resist.
The things in your life that don’t feel good, are painful, and aren’t working are communicating something to you through the discomfort that you are feeling. This discomfort is something to pay attention to instead of deny or ignore.
They can highlight the places where you’re out of alignment with your values and truth, where you still hold yourself captive to outdated beliefs, or where you’re repeating a pattern and haven’t yet found your way into a more life-giving choice and behavior.
Naming and acknowledging when something isn’t working, has become toxic, or is flat out hurting you is the first step in choosing to do something to change it.
Honestly feeling and owning how something is negatively affecting you can generate the impetus and commitment to change that is needed for real and lasting transformation to happen.
The truth is you can’t positively think your way out of a chronic health condition. You must tend to it, give it your attention, and make changes and choices that will support it’s healing process.
You can’t positively focus your way out of a relationship that’s become toxic and damaging. You must do the inner work to value yourself more, set firm and healthy boundaries, and make life-giving decisions on your own behalf.
You can’t positively think your way out of financial issues. You must evolve and mature your relationship to money and abundance — how you relate to it, how you manage it, and how you spend it.
Positive thinking and optimism might feel like they’re the way forward and out of your current pain and discomfort. They might seem like the thing that will help you avoid and escape all horrible, awful, painful things you don’t ever want to experience again.
It’s true — positive thinking is an essential part of creating a self-honoring life that you love. But when it’s used to avoid distress and sink deeper into any resistance you might have about making a new choice, committing to a new behavior, or responding in a different way to a situation, you take yourself further away from what you desire.
So, check in with yourself. The next time you find yourself refusing to feel the discomfort, or accept the raw reality of a situation, ask yourself this:
In this scenario, is my optimism on track and supporting what I really desire? Or is it misguided? Getting in the way? Keeping me stuck, in denial, fearful, or in resistance?
Then, if you discover that your positive thinking is misguided and reinforcing avoidance and resistance to change, ask yourself this:
If I allowed myself to really feel how this scenario is honestly impacting me, will I allow myself to make a self-honoring choice to change the outcome for the better?
Honesty with yourself is the way forward, loves.
Let’s get to it!
Originally published on https://aliciamorrow.com/