I’ve been known to have a motivational sign or two displayed in my studio and in my home. In my girls’ bathroom, they have one wall hanging that simply says “Joy,” and another that says “Go everywhere, talk to everyone, eat everything.” But one of the ubiquitous motivational slogans I’ve noticed on journals and graphic tees is “Positive Vibes Only!” And I, a positive person, can’t vibe with that.
Grief, despair, shame, anxiety, loneliness are necessary and authentic emotions that we need to recognize. We can name them and speak them out. When we tamp down those emotions, they pile up, they take up space. They accumulate in our hunched shoulders and pad the space around our lungs’ abilities to take a deep cleansing breath.
When we can name, breathe through, and release these things, it’s like taking a hammer and chisel to grout; we can loosen up the pent-up coils of things we’ve attempted to “cover up” with a smile.
“Look on the bright side; cheer up; it could be worse” - these statements devalue the worth of our feelings.
So when we say things like “positive vibes only!”, it takes away from the authenticity of being. And when we notice that the suppressed emotions have gathered in our spaces and accumulated along our edges, we need to respect ourselves enough to clean house. To sweep away the anxious fear and to dust the corners of accumulated dust bunnies of resentment and worry.
Nature abhors a vacuum, so when we exhale and release the ensemble of greedy tightwads lurking inside, we are making space for the goodness we deserve and are ready for.
Let’s … b r e a t h e …
As you inhale, bring in fresh, healing, wholesome and cleansing oxygen. And as you exhale, use your breath to sweep away the pent-up corners, to release those things you no longer need to have inside you, taking up space.
As you inhale, bring your hands to your heart and feel the potential there, and they way it joyously accepts the light and love you’re offering. And as you exhale, release the tight angles that are littered with unspoken regrets.
The idea of “letting go of what no longer serves you” has become pretty commonplace in wellness-minded jargon. I’ve said it myself! This quote from Ram Dass helped me accept the idea of what it may really mean.
Everything in you
That you don’t need
You can let go of
You don’t need
For you couldn’t possibly be alone
You don’t need greed
Because you already have it all
You don’t need doubt
Because you already know
- Ram Dass and East Forest, Sit Around the Fire (take a moment to listen/watch!)
Once you clear the space, you’ll be ready to sow the seeds.
May you find yourself worthy of a lovely plot to plant your mind garden.