USING YOUR ENERGY TO CREATE GOOD
I have to admit, I struggle at times It can prove difficult to make it through some days without feeling being attacked and overwhelmed by horrific news and graphic images swarming social media outlets. There are many times I have experienced a sensory overload and a gut wrenching despair for people I have never met. Truthfully, it can feel immobilizing and discouraging, causing a questioning of the future direction of humanity.
We often feel a desire to be of help and become frustrated in the knowing of how. There is a tendency to focus on large acts of generosity and kindness to make a difference. This is not always possible due to time and limited resourcing. Though such thoughtfulness is amazing, it is not the only significant avenue towards being of assistance.
One thing to realize is though big events and moments generate a lot of attention and discussion, small gestures of kindness and compassion are infinitely IMPACTING. This is due to the fact that they tend to be highly personalized (e.g. person to person) and the timing of their allowance is when a person is in the most need. I have witnessed through my work how small acts of kindness from strangers unzip emotionally, head to toe, those I work with in a profound and beautiful way. Life delivered a powerful message to the receiving person in that moment that they carry forth into life.
My encouragement to you is that you can use your energy to create good EVERY SINGLE DAY. This is simply by being the most genuine version of you and by showing compassion and gratitude. This just requires you to be engaged and aware of simple daily exchanges. Here are some suggestions to consider in your daily practice of creating good through your energy:
- Take care of YOU. You being in a genuinely happy and contented state of being automatically contributes, on an energetic level, to the collective whole. You may have had experience when interacting with someone who seems full of light and love, leaving a positive imprint on you, JUST from their state of emotional being. Be that person for another. Do not exaggerate or pretend, this only works if you are actually truly in that emotional space.
- Invest in Self-care and Boundaries. It is critical that you do not overextend. You becoming under-resourced does not serve your own well-being nor that of others. Be attuned to your own needs and ensure you respect the bounds of your limitations. Appreciate what you do have to offer and trust me, those receiving will as well.
- Be Genuine in Your Interactions. Model acceptance of your own true emotions and awareness of areas of growth. People are so critical of themselves and often believe others “have it all together”. It is amazingly helpful to know others share a similar feeling or struggle. It increases one’s sense of value since it seems less about some internal deficits and more about the challenges of living.
- Be Patient and Understanding. This is highly impactful on those around you: Friends, family, partners, kids and co-workers. Never underestimate the value of simply listening when you have nothing more to offer.
- Model and Cultivate Empathy: Before becoming defensive and assuming negative intent, either reflect or ask about, a person’s intent in behavior. Perhaps the driver who cut you off is not quite the jerk you thought and may be rushing to attend to some stressful situation. We just do not know and cannot always ascertain, the inner worlds and lives of others. Refrain from critical or judging statements. You may think it, but try not to allow for verbalization. Modeling this for others, our children being of high priority, is a powerful methods to facilitate kindness and temperance.
- Connect. Hug your loved ones. Especially kids. Look someone in the eye when you talk with them. Set down the electronics to show you care about what that person is saying. Smile upon seeing someone, familiar or unknown. This acknowledgement of another’s presence is invaluable and greatly lacking in our daily lives.
- Acknowledge a Person’s Struggle: Offer help when you can. Do not fear if the need extends beyond your capability. Many people assume someone’s needs may be more than what they can provide and do not even engage. Offer help. Verbalize that you see someone struggling (eg “I am sensing you are having a difficult time today…”). If you cannot provide the help, admit that. Understand that the offering of help was in of itself, healing and comforting. Someone struggling and feeling IGNORED and passed by others is a heart wrenching experience.
This list could be infinite in length but the goal is to provide examples that cultivate an understanding and generate ideas of your own. As we all recognize, life can prove to be challenging and discouraging. You can use your being to serve as a light and a reminder of hope during the darker times. Just being willing to emotionally engage, listen, and offer a hug can provide another the strength and resolve to push forward. I invite you to be this source of love, compassion, and understanding during times of negativity for others.
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