The Healing Power Of Being A Contrarian

The Healing Power Of Being A Contrarian
Sarcastically she thought as she stretched in bed during those first wakeful moments, "Let's see what the day brings." Then as she brushed her teeth, looking out the window, she self-corrected: "Let's see what you bring to the day." This simple shift in perspective holds a deep secret to happiness: The power of going in the opposite direction to reach center. Understanding the inherent energy in a duality creates a sense of personal empowerment. And personal empowerment enables you to see greater possibility to realize the potential for improvement.

Opposites are held together by tension, a strong, eager energy similar to a well-balanced game of tug of war. When you feel stuck, mired in sadness, depleted and alone, you can move out of this darkness by going the opposite route like a swimmer caught in a riptide, thrashing about in the same spot to stay alive; so instead of being pulled under, you can swim sideways to safety and light.

Here are some scenarios where opposites work to generate personal empowerment:
  • Stressed and anxious, too upset to do anything- this is the time to move. Stress hormones are most efficiently released from the body through movement. Exercise will free you from negativity by replacing those feelings with a can-do philosophy. Don't want to work out? Just walk out the door.
  • Feeling grief-stricken about a personal loss, put something back in the world to regain your balance. This includes a creative project, learning something new, or volunteering to help others, so as to feel grateful for what you still have. Focus will inevitably shift from what you don't have to what you do or can have.
  • Plugged into everyone as you are the go-to person? Unplug daily for personal time. Practice delegating. You will get more done and come back better when you pursue quiet time for self-care.
  • Can't forget and let go of a loss, conflict, failure or old hurt? Make an effort to remember it, but with the following qualification: Reframe the original story with a kinder interpretation using the universal knowledge that everyone makes a mistake, suffers misfortune, insult and injury, or a breakup. You can release the pain when you realize that human beings are flawed and might lash out because of their own insecurities, jealousies and personal hurt. You can grow from this experience by realizing you are not defined or limited by past failure.
  • Don't know who you are? Get lost in your multiple selves to find the inner self. Try on other identities to discover what feels good. You can become what you imagine.
The next time you find yourself smiling and saying yes to what doesn't resonate for you, just say no. The next time you can't sleep, force yourself to stay awake. The next time you feel like lashing out at an insult, don't - offer up a compliment instead. See how this strategy works for you. If it doesn't, then do the opposite of what I have suggested.
For more information on managing your stress and reclaiming your life read my book, Addicted to Stress: A Woman's 7 Step Program to Reclaim Joy and Spontaneity in Life. To listen to archived radio shows with guest experts visit Turn On Your Inner Light Radio Show

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This content was written by Debbie Mandel. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Debbie Mandel for details.