For many situations, acceptance alone will eliminate negative thinking, but not all. You need another strategy for when your emotions are RAGING. And this is the discipline of SURRENDER.
Before you can understand this second discipline, you need a basic understanding of your emotions.
Emotions are information in the form of feelings. When you experience an emotion, your body will respond with the release of hormones. This process is completely beyond conscious control at the point of feeling. Thoughts, hormones and behaviours already programmed in to your subconscious will automatically arise as soon as the emotion is felt.
If you have undertaken no training, this response will be a default. This default will be based on past experiences, quite often from childhood. The response may therefore be completely inappropriate! The level of response is also dependent on your sensitivity.
Remember that external reaction may have nothing to do with internal reaction. Some people are capable of a poker-face calm exterior when inside they are seething. It’s your internal reactions, rather than your behaviour, that will determine both your wellbeing and your performance.
Once we feel severely vexed about our situation, we enter into a kind of trance, known as the “Red Mist”, and acceptance can no longer help us. The appropriate response will surprise you.
Raging emotion is actually empowered by resistance. It feeds off the part of our awareness that says “this is wrong”. Why? Because you feel in an impossible position. On one hand you want to do the right thing, yet the “right thing” is utterly unhelpful in resolving the issue. Utterly cornered by this conflict of overpowering negativity and the inability to square it with your conscience, you will only act like any cornered animal does.
So what’s the answer? Give up. Give in. Surrender. Imagine that for some great cause or loved one, in order to save something more precious than your own life, you decide to sacrifice yourself, drop all resistance, and prepare to die. Another picture is to imagine that an alien has been trying to take over your mind. Knowing it will only possess a loved one if you resist, you drop your guard, and allow the creature full access to your mind. Another picture is consenting to receive a general anaesthetic, and to allow yourself to slip into unconsciousness and lose all control, or to submit your will to that of a hypnotist, and his soothing voice, in the absence of all resistance, seems to fill your being.
Of course this is the last thing you would want or think of doing, but letting go in this way has a very surprising effect. Rather than be overwhelmed, you will find yourself calming right down. Depriving the emotion of resistance also deprives it of its power over you. Being you, vulnerable and weak, as in reality everyone is at some point, surrendering to this fact means you are no longer fear it, and fear is the fuel of all negative emotion.
ALL THE TOOLS IN PLACE
Apply all disciplines I have described and you will completely banish doubt from your mind. Keep your attention firmly on your intention in every waking moment, seize the opportunities in every moment, even if they are not what you’d prefer, and when your awareness is raided by the “Monsters From The ID”, instead of fighting them, completely surrender to them, and they will evaporate like fading memories.
You have everything necessary within your life to succeed, and you always did. What’s been holding you back is simply erroneous ideas handed down to you by others that you have unwittingly taken on and believed. You can override this conditioning rapidly and easily if you have a single burning passion. Harness your attention to this passion, practice emotional intelligence to ride straight through your own mental/emotional obstacles and nothing and no one can stop you. Every time you encounter a disappointment, a rejection, a wrong turn, it only makes you stronger.
…So, are you going to continue letting your attention and emotions wander undisciplined through your mind, sowing doubt and sabotaging all your efforts, or are you going to start doing what you love and loving what you do? An obvious choice perhaps, but to truly change, that choice must be recognised and consciously made.