This is one of the places where I always get tangled with things like optimism, positive thinking, law of attraction, visualization etc.
Don’t get me wrong – I’ve based much of my life on the concept that being able to separate yourself from your thoughts and emotions can help you thrive in life.
And though I reject the idea that positive thinking is some kind of magic that can bootstrap people in survival mode out of poverty? And other theories that claim that people born into a marginalized group are somehow attracting their oppression to themselves?
It has served me well.
As I’ve said before, you have to make out of survival or trauma mode before you can even focus your thoughts enough to thrive and prosper.
Even if that particular claim of the law of attraction is accurate, I hardly think that blaming people for unwittingly worsening their prospects is an effective method of getting them to change their habits.
When you are in turmoil or survival mode, it’s nearly impossible to break free of a cycle of negativity, unless you’ve already been taught how to control your emotions and thoughts.
Still. Even as a highly sensitive personality who has two chronic illnesses and cancer, if I’m not in survival mode, the only things that have consistently worked to prosper in my life are:
- believing in myself,
- focusing on my desired outcome,
- putting all my energy into one goal at a time, and,
- meditating daily to dump out bad energy.
Then something like this election happens. And I’m thrown completely off my game, as well as caught up in the wave of the fear around me.
And everything derails.
It’s in finding my way back that I find myself lost and buried in the aforementioned confusion.
On the one hand, whatever you resist tends to persist.
So of course, I focus on joy as much as I can.
However, there is absolutely no way I will simply be quiet and keep my head down, and focus only on my own well being, in the face of a rising potentially-fascist regime taking over a democracy I live in.
I don’t care whose rights are being trampled on and whether or not the outcome will affect me personally.
How can you not resist oppression?
Maybe it’s from seeing much more of the world than my peers as a child (thank you parental units!) but I can’t envision a successful future of humankind without a change in global consciousness.
We cannot survive without each other. Prejudice, sexism, classism, racism- the more we clash, the less likely we are to survive as a species.
So for our own good as well as the good of all humanity, we cannot allow oppression to expand.
But if energetically, the observation, resistance and struggle against oppression is what gives it life, what to do?
The thing I’ll be experimenting with is the thing that helped me survive chemo and cancer.
90% of the time I focused on being and having joy, healing and resting.
10% of the time I allowed myself a good venting session. But I bookended it with things that make me feel good. This was so serious to me that I would actually schedule it on my calendar like an appointment.
Why would I volunteer for a negative experience?
Most of my art, including the ability to use my writing to help others heal, comes from my pain. My physical pain never goes completely away. Ignoring it is a type of resistance.
Resistance does not work.
Better that I sit with it for a while, allow the appropriate frustration and experiences to wash over me, then release and practice joy. Letting them fester isn’t a good plan- and that’s what ignoring the problem really does.
Is there a positive way to focus resistance energy?
The outcome of the recent presidential election has my soul in turmoil.
I was in bed almost as much as I would be if I was back in chemo the first week. At least two other family members of mine were in as much pain, emotionally.
I actually started having heart palpitations and a racing pulse every time I tried to talk about the results of the election or the current president-elect. It’s only been in the last few days that I can finally talk about it without my stress levels spiking.
It isn’t just sour grapes. I wish it was.
I’ve been registered as an independent for most of my life. So this isn’t a Democrat/Republican thing for me.
It’s a social justice matter- not only for the people like me who will suffer under his rule in several areas. But the fact that there are already plans in motion for him to betray even the people who put him in power.
I think this is what is most misunderstood about activists.
We aren’t just people who march in the streets when things don’t go our way.
We want justice for Everyone. Just because we’re fighting for equal rights for women, doesn’t mean we want inequality for men.
It’s not just about starting hashtags, writing about ideas, sharing articles we agree with via social media.
There are several stages and levels to activism, and most people only see the short-term actions that get news coverage.
It’s also volunteering to do grunt work for organizations and charities we believe in.
It’s coming up with, organizing and executing plans to overcome injustices.
It’s working a full day, then spending time away from loved ones to ensure that they have a bright future.
We’re not just doing it for ourselves (some people are but I wouldn’t call those people activists).
A true activist knows there’s no such thing as justice for some of us. That’s the definition of injustice for an activist.
Is it possible to energetically re-channel resistance energy?
It’s my opinion that it’s always a smoother road to be for a positive thing than against a negative thing.
Instead of being against the president-elect, I choose to be for constitutional, economic, racial and gender justice.
Does that mean I won’t fight and push back against injustice?
No. It’s just a reframe.
In my case it’s an important one. In my life, it has been so much harder, and has taken so much more energy, to be against things rather than for their opposites.
Maybe it’s a Jedi mind trick and there’s nothing to it at all on the quantum level.
All I know is it works for me.