I made more money in April than any other month in my life.
I’ve gained more laughs and approval.
I’ve also continued to write after a 10-hour workday, eat healthily, do yoga, and meditate.
More importantly, I’ve felt more peaceful, content, and purposeful.
. . .
Good is Not Great
Systems, routines, life, and people are constantly evolving. What has worked in the past may not work or be the most efficient in the future.
Starbucks changed its barista responsibilities repeatedly to become the fasted fast-food company in the world.
Steve Jobs changed the appearance of Apple’s computers from the Macintosh to the iMac and now the MacBook.
Morning or evening routines change. Workout and exercise routines change. Diets and supplements change.
My techniques to increase my charisma, motivation, and success have changed.
I used to alter my body language, vocal tonality, eye contact, and verbage to control people’s perception of me. From the many many books I’ve read and videos I’ve watched, I believed I could get people to think I was confident, funny, and charming, and that would get them to like me.
And it worked, temporarily. Eventually, incongruencies in my thoughts, feelings, actions would be exposed. Or some wouldn’t believe my facade. But the most harm my previous tactics caused was to myself.
I knew I was lying. I knew I was “faking it to make it.” The pressure to uphold a facade and image was depleting for my mind, body, and soul.
I used to reframe and construct every “negative” thought and feeling I had to increase my motivation to work harder and longer.
I’d fight my tiredness after working at Starbucks to go to the gym. I’d fight my tiredness to get homework done after the gym. I’d fight my tiredness the next morning at work.
I’d fight every urge to eat a donut instead of a salad. I’d fight every urge to relax instead of writing an article a day.
I performed well at work. My friends and family marveled at my discipline and work ethic. But I was exhausted. And like my previous strategies, I couldn’t maintain them.
I’d cheat on my diet in secrecy. I’d take long breaks from writing. I’d quit every endeavor because I didn’t have the motivation to keep going.
Shame is scarier than failure, so I’d make excuses to rationalize my actions.
My previous tips, tricks, techniques, and strategies were drenched in control and force. Control and force are two dense energies.
. . .
Feel Then Act
Everything is composed of energy.
Water, food, cells, humans, smartphones, houses, stores, cities, etc., are composed of atoms or energy.
And energy is felt. We can feel the sun warming our skin. We can feel the vibration of grass or sand if we’re barefoot. I can feel when my best friend is upset without his disclosure. And my best friend can feel when I’m anxious without my disclosure.
Feeling precedes action. Anger comes before the scream. Joy is the foundation of a laugh or smile. And purpose inspires long hours.
Again, control and force cause tension and anxiety, and these feelings are unconsciously subcommunicated and dictate our actions.
My hyperfocus on my body language and vocal tonality caused an overarching feeling of tension that many of my coworkers noticed.
One of my coworkers would always comment on how stressed I looked even though I was attempting to appear relaxed and chill.
The pressure to speak louder to subcommunicate confidence and certainty backfired when people would often say, “wait, what you’d say? I couldn’t hear you.” Or, “stop mumbling.”
Obsessing over my thoughts and feelings created a stressful relationship within me.
Positive and negative are words with many associations. For example, to most, positive means good, and negative means bad. Let’s not get into definitions, but I will be using these words moving forward, so let’s give them contextual labels.
Positive emotions = resourceful and productive energy.
Negative emotions = less resourceful and productive energy.
Our aim to achieve success or improve ourselves should be to align with positive emotions because emotions are the link between thought and action.
View yourself as a ball of energy. And this ball has a dominant aura or feeling texture. Aim to align this ball to emotions and energies of peace, contentment, sharing, giving, abundance, and love.
To transform or guide your energy, do whatever you authentically feel will work best for you. Breathwork, meditation, yoga, whole foods, essential oils, positive thinking, affirmations, and visualizations are common practices.
But remember, a practice can become a prison based on your dependency and relationship to it.
Energy can be manifested without an external practice, but a practice can help us reconnect to feelings that we haven’t felt in a while.
I primarily like to use breathwork, meditation, yoga, and a gentle inner dialogue as I feel these practices are most applicable off the mat, out of the poses, and in the real world. But any practice can work if your intention is to align with positive emotions.
I was at a friend’s house yesterday, and I felt tension in my body because I still have the habit of attempting to control others’ perceptions of me. Once I noticed this tension, I breathed, relaxed, felt more peaceful, and said something witty and funny.
I also noticed the less tense I was, the more my voice naturally projected without effort.
I’ve worked every day this month and have felt tired at many moments. But instead of trying to suppress my exhaustion, I just breathed, relaxed, and reminded myself of my goals. The joy and purpose I feel throughout my body inspires me to work longer and harder without depletion, anger, or resentment.
I have yet to cheat on my diet this month, have lost 50 pounds since New Years’, and continue to write in my free time.
. . .
Results create an upward spiral and momentum. The fact energy work has produced such excellent results inspires me to continue to release and let go of negative emotions when they arise or align with positive ones.
Without the negative, only the positive can remain.
Perhaps my perspective on energy work will change, and I’ll shed its skin as a caterpillar does to become a butterfly.
Until then, I will continue to view myself as a ball of energy and guide its feeling texture.
But I digress.
. . .
Dream Chasers is my email list for those who imagine a future different than their present.
This post was previously published on Change Becomes You.
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