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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Is There A Spiritual Solution For Every Negative Emotion?

At one time in my life, I would have thought that question was ridiculous. Of course not. I practiced contempt prior to investigation. Quite simply, I thought I knew everything. I meet lots of people like that now.

Today I realize I was wrong. Just because you don't currently know the solution to (y) doesn't mean that a solution does not exist.

One of the greatest tricks of the human brain is that it convinces us that things are permanent. That emotions are permanent, that an inability to find a solution is permanent, that death is permanent. Depressed people who commit suicide are people without an ability or who lack the capacity to understand that there is a spiritual solution to their emotional problems. Not that I think suicide is an eternal death sentence. I rejected that fear based dogma years ago.

Imagine a negative emotion. Let's use anger. Can we dis-assemble anger like a non functioning engine or a clock and look at the parts? Can we figure out how the parts came to be, how they inter-relate, and how they fit back together? Can we fix anger like a mechanic rebuilds a 350 ci engine or a watchmaker fixes a mantle clock?

Of course we can. In fact, I have a spiritual solution for every negative emotion in my life. In the case of anger, I realize it is always fear based. When I root out the cause, which in my life usually meant that someone didn't do something the way I wanted or expected, I became angry. I find that emotion to be quite rare today. I stripped anger bare years ago, I dissected and evaluated all my fears, and I rebuilt my emotional brain. I don't take things personally. Do I still get angry once in awhile? Sure, but it happens with great infrequency.

There are also situations that exist which by themselves are not negative in and of themselves but always seem to generate negative emotions. Unmet or unrealized expectations. It happens all the time.

Here is the process I use. I take nothing personally, ever. If someone says they will call and they don't- that has nothing to do with me. If I am relying on somebody for anything in my life and they fail to meet the agreed upon terms, I accept my role and responsibility for relying on the unreliable. I also accept that people are simply living their lives and that sometimes- they do not meet their obligations or expectations. That has nothing to do with me. Those situations no longer anger me or generate negative emotions because I have a spiritual solution that is applied long before some expectation goes unmet. I risk manage in advance.

Once your expectations are un met, all that is required is communication and an internal dialogue about whether you want to subject yourself to or endure the same potential outcome again. Usually I do. I don't beat myself up if I am wrong twice. There is no rule regarding that, just a cliche' here or there.

With regard to expectations, I make plans. I do my best. I do not plan the outcome. I am always satisfied with the outcome as long as I have fulfilled my agreed upon role and due diligence. I control my actions and words. I cannot control the actions and words of others therefore I feel no need to manipulate others or try to persuade them if things don't go the way I'd like them to. I agree to those terms in the workplace, in the family, at the coffee shop.

People will always fail you. That's what people do and that is ok.

Today, I have discovered a peace that I would never have thought possible. I don't allow negative emotions to get into my head nor do I allow them to expand which they have a habit of doing. I am risk managed to such a degree that only rarely and fleetingly do negative emotions pop up, perhaps a couple of times a week. In the old days, this happened multiple times- every day. Once they do pop up, negative emotions are processed and eliminated quickly without further damage to myself or others by applying spiritual principles.

I sure could have used that spiritual blueprint as a younger man, but things never got bad enough...well... until they did. Perhaps that's what it takes.