With the Thanksgiving Holiday quickly approaching, we start to think about gratitude: giving thanks and being thankful. Sometimes when we start to reflect on the good, we can get side-tracked to focusing on the bad or how we could be better. We tend to linger on what needs improvement. How can we be better people, better parents, better at our jobs, better at our relationships and just all around better? Instead of letting ourselves go to the “dark side,” it’s important to focus on how good we already are. When we start to think in terms of what’s really working and what have we accomplished, the positive thinking helps things to work better in and of itself. By putting attention on good things, good shows up more…mostly because you are making an effort to notice it.
This technique applies to the body as well. When a client comes in with chronic pain (the type of pain that they are convinced is never going to change no matter that they do) and starts to identify sensations in their body over the course of sessions that aren’t pain and they start to feel movements that don’t hurt them (movements they can do without triggering their chronic pain), over time the mental, emotional, and physical shift becomes that their body isn’t solely a “pain producer.” That then allows them to start looking and searching for movements that feel good instead and bring more good sensations into their body and their everyday experience. Positive produces positive!
This experience is not dissimilar to someone who feels generally out of shape. If you approach your body in a negative way, always feeding into the negative, berating yourself saying, “I’m fat. I’m weak, I can’t get into shape,” then you won’t do the things you desperately want to do. Negative produces negative. Instead, if you do exercises that make you feel good, that make your muscles feel like they are working and supporting you then you start to seek out more good movements and good sensations. The positive reinforcement will help you seek more positive reinforcements and before you know it, your body is in the “shape” you desire it to be! That’s how we work as human beings- we have to condition our minds to focus in on the good- the gratitude- the positive.
There’s so much good about each and everyone of us. The more that we acknowledge and honor that, the more it will show up. So as we move into these colder months and inch closer to the holidays, remember to take the time you need to be grateful and focus on the positive not because there aren’t things that are negative but because you deserve to feel good.