Counselor's Corner: Freedom from negativity

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Fred Cavaiani

It is easy to think negatively. Our minds often wander to resentments. Judging and condemning others can become more popular than thinking positively about other people. Eighty percent of our thoughts each day focus on negative thinking. This saps our emotional and physical energy. None of us escape childhood without some emotional wounds. Our protection from embracing these emotional wounds are often negative thinking about others or experiencing anger and resentments inside of us.

Become more observant of your thoughts throughout the day. You will discover how negative thinking can easily creep inside your head. It happens too often. When our minds are empty, negativity seems to barge through the door of our mind. It happens quickly.

This is an emotional state of mind that can be easily overcome when we make a conscious effort to remain positive and look for goodness in people, places and things. But this conscious effort to see the positive must be backed with an experience of divine positivity. This is why meditation is so important. It is also why associating with positive people is very necessary.

Social media is filled with negative and judgmental thinking. Then of course we have Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and whatever technical communication you might use. All of these can be very positive. But they can also be very negative. Stay positive. Make a conscious effort to say good things about others on whatever social media you use.

When I am making a conscious effort to be positive, I create a relaxed mode within my body. I can be free from negativity and negative thinking by consciously making the effort to be positive and look for goodness in everyone and everything. But this conscious and deliberate effort to be positive can be lost in a second. There is something about negativity that seems to grasp us quicker than positive experiences. We can often remember negative experiences and maximize them and forget or minimize positive experiences. This attitude of maximizing the negative and minimizing the positive affects every aspect of life: religion, politics, marriage, family relationships and friendships. When negativity becomes strong in our culture, misery and depression and anxiety become stronger. When people think and speak positively these psychological and spiritual limitations can be worked through and overcome.

The old saying of have “an attitude of gratitude” is filled with much positive meaning.

How do we maintain a positive attitude? Start each day with a conscious decision to look for goodness in everyone and in everything. Have an “attitude of gratitude” when your eyes first open up. Realize that this day can be positive and joyful if you decide to be positive and joyful. But to remain in this positive attitude find some silence at the beginning of the day to practice meditation. If this quiet time seems negative then it is not meditation, it is then obsession. Quiet time with God is always positive. There is no negativity in God.

Many years ago, Teilhard de Chardin wrote a book called “The Divine Milieu.” He was a Jesuit priest, a paleontologist and geologist who wrote about evolution. He maintained that the world and the universe is based on an energy of love. Everything is filled with the energy of love, which he felt was God’s love and God’s energy. His books were very scientific and very spiritual at the same time.

If you have ever noticed when you associate with loving people you will experience a positive energy around you and within you. Now think of the energy in a tree, a blade of grass, the sun and moon and sky, the birth of a child, the gentle embrace of a loved one, the loving words of someone who is kind. This energy is constantly present and constantly filling the world with positivity. We can be this energy and immerse ourselves in this energy of love by making a conscious decision to immerse ourselves in being loving and positive. Today, a famous author, Richard Rohr, concretizes the works of de Chardin in the many books Rohr has written.

In a world which seems encased in negativity, there are many positive attitudes and experiences that are all around us. Make a decision this day to become a part of this. It will relax you, energize you and bring you into a positive union with love and your life. All will be well, no matter what happens around you or with you. Life is all about love and love is all around us.

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Fred Cavaiani is a licensed marriage counselor and psychologist with a private practice in Troy. He is the founder of Marriage Growth Center, a consultant for the Detroit Medical Center, and conducts numerous programs for groups throughout Southeast Michigan. His column in the Legal News runs every other Tuesday. He can be reached at 248-362-3340. His e-mail address is: Fredcavi@yahoo.com and his website is fredthecounselor.com.