How to Heal Negative Thinking and Behaviours

Uproot by Dario Villanueva
Uprooted Tree pic by Dario Villanueva

So, after a month’s break in August, where the word was Illuminate, I am back with the Word of the Month for September: Eradicate.

It is spring here in Australia so it’s a good time for renewal and regrowth.

Cleaning out the mental and emotional closets is such a healthy (and necessary) practice for a good life. Life is a process of constant renewal, and in order to be present in the now, and be able to fully Express (the word for the year) we need to be constantly clearing out what is no longer necessary.

When we look at the etymology of ERADICATE – it comes down to roots.

Latin eradicat- ‘torn up by the roots’, from the verb eradicare, from e- (variant of ex- ) ‘out’ + radixradic- ‘root’.

To eradicate is to pull something up by the roots. This is particularly relevant to the rooting up of old beliefs that no longer serve us.

What I am noticing that is coming up for uprooting at the moment is my attachment to views and opinions and the need to be right. All of this is of the ego, and while the ego, per se, is not a bad thing, it definitely isn’t a good idea to let it guide out lives. Attachment to views and opinions and being right strengthens the identity and the sense of self. Letting go of views and opinions and the need to be right helps us to be more in the flow of life and less in a vibe of conflict (fighting with what is).

I always remember the great Krishnamurti quote that I love: ‘You want to know my secret, I will tell you my secret, I don’t mind what happens.’

Another thing he was famous for saying was that he didn’t know why people still kept coming to his speaking events over and over. If they had got the message, in theory he should be out of a job. If they kept on coming it meant that they still had not fully received / digested the teaching.

So, Krishnamurti is not in conflict with anything external, and most likely nothing internal either, because one is a mirror for the other. To not be in conflict with anything inside or outside of oneself means you are more likely to be living a life aligned with the will of the whole, a life of Surrender. I am so fascinated by the Surrender Experiment book that I am posting regular Surrender checkins in the Global Yogi Inner Sanctum group on facebook, each Friday more or less. I want to track what level of surrender I am living in each week and see if by tracking it I can deepen my surrender.

So, what am I going to uproot this month?

Attachment to views and opinions. The need to be ‘right’.

I choose to uproot or eradicate the need to be right. I choose to let go of my attachment to my own views and opinions. I recognise that in the letting go I am freeing up my energy for new life. For new experience, for new ness. For new ism.

Believing the voice of the Inner Critic

I have been monitoring my inner voice – particularly the critical voice (or monster of ‘Aaaarrrrgh, it’s all going to pieces’), and throughout the day I notice how often it is telling me negative things about myself.

Though I would love to completely uproot this inner voice, I know that it is a part of me – and so I must love and accept it as a part of my practice of radical self-acceptance. Essentially it wants only to protect me from harm. If I can be kind to this critical voice that wants to keep me safe, most likely it will become less afraid and less dramatic and have less to criticise. What I choose to do is lovingly notice this voice and the negative self-talk when it comes up, and let it go, or, question it using the Byron Katie method.

Inner Critic says: you know you are so ……. (criticism) and the evidence for this is in (all these incidents) in your past.

My loving response to Inner Critic: Is there something you are particularly concerned about right now? Is there something you are afraid of and need to protect me from?

Inner Critic: Maybe you shouldn’t / should do X, Y or Z.

Me: Thanks for the kind and considered advice, and I will take it into consideration. Rest assured though that I have GOT THIS and all is well. Thank you for caring about me.

Inner Critic: Oh, well then, er… you are welcome! Thanks for listening to me! 🙂

So – as we lovingly listen to the voice of the monster of ‘Aaaarrrrgh!’ and lovingly let them know that it’s all ok and there is nothing too huge to worry about but that we appreciate their concern, this monster can relax. And then we have disconnected or uprooted the belief that everything it says is true and needs to be paid attention to.

The Need for Certainty

I have been feeling a need for some kind of road map for life of late. I have been wanting to know that I am on the right path. Then I watched one of Alan Watt’s talks about life not being a journey, but more of an experience. He mentions particularly artistic expression; music, dance, painting, never has a destination. It is a great metaphor for the game of life.

We are here to experience it.

We are here to dance and to be danced.

We are here to enjoy the game.

And as my late brother said, we are here to relish the uncertainty. Rather than being afraid of it, be excited in anticipation of wonderful-ness just around the corner.

How exciting!  Anything can happen.

And this, indeed is the essence of being alive. Know that you are not in control, and have fun. Enjoy the game and rise to all of the challenges that playing the game entails, including the challenge of being a bit afraid to play because you might get it wrong. Don’t worry; you will get it wrong. You will fall over, but it’s a game, so you can dust yourself off and get up again. Start again. Play. Maybe sometimes I have a clear long term plan, and at other times that plan merges, morphs and changes, and sometimes dissolves of it’s own accord. That’s OK. Anything can happen and everything is possible.

Excess Baggage

I have been in a process of de-stuffocation for years now, and I am getting down to a very manageable level of possessions. I have only the things I need, and my storage cupboard at my flat is getting emptier and emptier. My apartment now is very zen, and I really enjoy lending out my zen space to my Airbnb guests. I guess that they resonate with this vibe and thus they choose my place to relax in. I choose to continue eradicating everything that I no longer use or need and that no longer brings me joy. I feel lighter with each and every letting go. Oh, the joy of a minimalist life. And yes – you can take it slightly too far, a la JP Spears. Check out his video on Minimalism, it’s hilarious. 🙂

What is essential in your life? What do you love to do? Can you go through a process of eliminating all the stuff in your house that is from your past? Like an old baseball bat from high school? Notice what happens to you energetically as you let go of your stuff.

Trying too hard

I want to eradicate the energy of trying too hard. If you are trying too hard in something: whether to create something, in business, in a relationship or friendship, in your planning so that you get it all right. it is probably an indication you are not in surrender. It means that you are swimming upstream, against the tide, and everything is therefore difficult for you.

Instead I choose to give up the energy of trying too hard, noticing that this efforting is most likely the result of paying too much attention to the inner critic (you are bad and need to do X or go Y or be faster, harder, stronger).

If you want to go deeper on this journey of self fluency (thank you, Havi Brooks), then join the Global Yogi members group on facebook, the Inner Sanctum.

What are you eradicating this month? What can you let go of in your mental, emotional, spiritual or material life that will lighten the load for you and put a spring in your step?

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