Positivity and creativity can reinforce each other and it is incredibly liberating to feel that momentum build. On the opposite side, doubt and negativity can drag you down, deep. So much of the my journey thus far has been battling my own dark side.
It used to be that I was unconsciously negative. I would complain and blame, criticize and make excuses without being aware of how much of a downer I was. As a teenager my sense of self was so low, I had no experience being positive at all. I felt that nothing I said or did mattered.
As I slowly began to realize I was negative I would defend my negativity – I was being realistic, I was being cynical, I was being pessimistic – really, I was being irrationally sort of proud of it. Looking back, this stage embarrasses me the most – I was being a know-it-all fashion student.
The next stage of awareness was when I started to notice the effects of my attitude. I never before noticed when people would be hurt or annoyed by things I said or did. It had never occurred to me before that my actions and attitude would actually be important to anyone else or affect people besides myself. This consciousness was painful, I felt really bad for things I said and did. The blog played a huge part in this process; before blogging I had never been able to see feedback to my own expressions in such a direct way.
Thus began the process of acquiring a positive attitude and trying to recover from years of ignorance and depression. It has been a huge challenge. I am not full of positivity all the time, I am sure no one is. Sometimes I feel discouraged and down, but the difference is now I know it – I can feel the negativity crash over me like a wave and identify the irrational feelings that stifle me.
Just recently I have been able to go beyond just awareness and develop an ability to control myself. When I notice the downward pressure I try to shut myself off and take a time out – the negativity can undo the things I have tried to build and oppress the people around me. So I avoid the internet and the phone and try to do things that comfort me and give me energy – talk to my family, make food, take naps with my cat, take a walk, read my favourite funny books, until I feel my best self resurfaces and I can recover and get on with the good stuff.
The whole LOA stuff doesn’t appeal to me – too mystical, evangelistic, and a little creepy – but I do really think that what you put into your world is what your world is. It just seems like common sense, I do not know why it took me so long to realize it. I try to be helpful and creative and I put a lot of effort into making the scene around me fun and exciting to be in – and bit by bit, the life I always wanted to live is becoming real.
So – I became aware, and then I took the responsibility for my environment and now I am learning to control my own actions. This must be what growing up is.