Updated: May 12
Sounds crazy, I know. But let me explain! There is so much more to happiness and healing than positivity...
There’s something called spiritual bypassing, which is when we don’t deal with the negative, the hurt, the wounds, and what’s going on inside.
Spiritual bypassing typically happens when we begin our spiritual journey or personal growth path. It’s when we say things like “I’m only going to think positive!” or “I’m going to use affirmations!” or “Everything is great!” and we shut out everything that’s bad.
This was me about 12 years ago when I first started my spiritual journey.
Now that I’ve taken part in a spiritual training and allowed myself to experience a deeper healing I realized that we have to sit with the pain in the physical body. We need to become comfortable with the uncomfortable.
Everything that we do to distract us from pain… alcohol and drug addictions, sex addictions, overeating, love addictions, success addictions, workaholism, procrastination… makes us avoid what is happening in the physical body.
Jackson MacKenzie, author or Whole Again, explains that mental illness comes from the unwillingness and inability to experience the full extent of our suffering. I completely agree, and let me tell you why…
When we experience trauma, our bodies shut down. We walk around thinking everything is great. Sure, we may feel a little anxious or restless sometimes, but we tend to brush off our anger/sadness/etc.
The hard truth is, all the trauma that happened to us needs to actually be felt in order to be let go.
The best thing you can do for yourself is take 5 minutes each day to sit with your body and acknowledge what it is feeling. Close your eyes if you want to. Feel what’s happening in your body.
Does it feel like a hole in your body, a stabbing pain, a numbness, a tingly feeling? Give it your full attention.
If you can sit with that feeling for just 5 minutes each day, that is the most healing thing you can do. It might take a while to feel better, and you may feel worse before you actually heal, but underneath it all, you are doing so much for your soul. I promise you.
Once all of those feelings are felt, you will experience happiness, true love, joy, easiness, laughter, and purpose.
Here’s where positive thinking comes in…
Once all the feelings are felt, you can use the 3 Point Turn. It is my favorite method to use when things start to get a little crazy.
Step 1 is to say what’s happening right now and how you’re feeling about it. (ex. I am overwhelmed because my house is a mess.)
Step 2 is to say something that makes you feel a little bit better and is still real. (ex. I know that if I really need to clean my house, I will clean it.)
Step 3 is to say something that is your ultimate goal like “Something I like to think about is…” (ex. Something I like to think about is my house always being clean, so I don’t have to worry about it.)
Framing my emotions and actions in this way has been so powerful for me, and I hope it will help you heal too.
If you'd like to hear me explain my philosophy on why too much positivity is bad for you, you can watch me talk about it here!