We always hear so much about positivity and the power of positive thinking, but is it realistic to think we can be positive all the time? Do we need to have the balance of positive and negative? And is it ok to feel flat about things sometimes or should we always be choosing to see the positive?
Recently I was debriefing with my partner about a situation which I wasn’t happy with, as it wasn’t going in the direction I intended. He knows how passionate I am about working with children and the life skills I teach through yoga, so after chatting for a while about this he said to me, ‘why are you being negative about this? Why don’t you just use the techniques you talk about in your yoga classes to be positive about it?’ This surprised me and stopped me in my tracks, and I’ve found myself pondering over this question for the past few days.
After much consideration, I came to the realisation that we need to have that natural rise and fall of our emotions to make any progress in difficult situations. When we feel sad or down about something I think it’s our bodies’ way of saying ‘hey, this doesn’t feel right, something needs to be addressed in this situation.’ If we are extremely upset about something I think it’s incredibly powerful to express those emotions by venting with a friend or even crying, because only after we’ve let go of that reactivity to the situation can we clearly see a way forward.
This is also vital for children, imagine if we told our children they shouldn’t cry or show any negative emotions at all. They would hide them deep inside until one day they’d explode from all of that built up anger and frustration. We want our children to know that it’s ok to feel sadness, anger, frustration or whatever the ‘negative’ emotion is, but it’s the way we deal with this that matters. We can be the role model for them!
So, after acknowledging and then releasing the negative emotions, by talking or crying etc., this is the time we can be deliberate in our actions and say, ‘ok, now I’m going to use coping strategy X, Y or Z to help me get back on to a positive path.’ We teach a number of coping strategies at Little Stars Yoga & Wellness, to children as young as 3 years old up to adults, these include breathing techniques to remain calm or refocus, the power of positive affirmations and mantras and exercises to learn mindfulness. For more information on our classes and how yoga can be the ‘positive’ in your life head to www.littlestarsyoga.com.au