If you listen to the news, you’ll know that there’s a lot of chatter about recession and what we should be doing and thinking about. I listen to the news regularly, and throughout the last three years, I’ve really come to see how even well-intentioned hosts can fixate on topics that feel dramatic. A lot of what is reported is designed to heighten our reactions. If we’re not decerning with what we consume, in terms of information, we can easily get pulled into a business model that’s designed to promote fear in us.
Although the word soul can sound mysterious, spiritual and esoteric, in this context, I’m using it to describe our emotional well-being. Using ‘soul’ as the one that governs our physical, emotional and existential being. The parts of us that are grounded on this earth and that influence how we experience ourselves and the world around us.
I hear a lot of fear being shared. It’s become a habit in our culture, the ‘sharing’ of what scares us. It’s easy to be a carrier of that fear, speaking about things that illicit concern. Our fear takes on our reality, and we pass it on to others simply by sharing it. Often, we do it thinking we’re well-intentioned, but it truly is just gossip or promoting scarcity. I hear it in the grocery store, gym, yoga studio, and among friends and family. I watch it like I would a car wreck, somewhat interested but mostly gripped with a tightness around my heart.
The thing about the economy that’s certain, it’s guaranteed to have major ups and downs. That’s a fact, just like everything else in life, and if you’re genuinely interested, it’s worth understanding what’s happening. What I find is that people aren’t truly interested in understanding it and are more interested in sharing what’s wrong and why we should be worried.
The downside of that, without educating ourselves properly — we use difficult seasons, whether it’s an economic, global or personal crisis — as another way to share our uneasiness and lack of positive outlook. Instead of finding ways to educate and uplift ourselves, which contributes to despair instead of progress.
In order to live a life that doesn’t feel confined or restricted by what’s happening in the world, we have to be intentional with what we think, what we say, and the actions we take. Our words, thoughts and actions directly impact our inner and outer world. Meaning what we focus on, we manifest.
For example, when taking a vacation, you start by thinking about going on vacation, then begin saving for it; you plan and eventually execute your fantasies. This all started with the thoughts you conjured up in your mind about what you wanted and creating your reality from there.
I know that example seems a bit trite, but we create our reality, and if we don’t understand that, then we create it without internality and can easily get trapped in other people’s despair. People who are not being intentional about what they’re focusing on.
When you think about the world, do you focus on things that feel stressful and alarming? Do you share those feelings with your world? Because what you focus on affects how you feel and how you feel affects your life in both positive and negative ways. It’s not that you can’t think about things that feel challenging or worrisome; it’s if you don’t choose what you’re focusing on and find ways to look for solutions; the impact makes you feel like a victim. It’s the emotions you carry behind your actions that are profoundly impactful to your life and others.
If you fixate on sensations and stories that don’t feel good, guess what, more of those emotions travel towards you because you’re focusing on that. Not because it’s some kind of ‘woo woo’ spiritual thing that’s transpiring. It’s because that’s where your focus is, and it impacts how you feel. It’s important to understand what’s happening in the world and not live with our heads below ground, but if we don’t pay attention to what we’re paying attention to, we’ve got runaway emotions that make us feel disempowered.
We can apply this concept to anything that happens in the world. We can either focus on the direction we’d like to move towards or focus on things that make us uncomfortable and scared. When we focus on the latter, we often become too agitated to make positive moves forward. We get absorbed by the drama – hence we create more drama which governs the direction of our lives.
We can’t stop taking care of ourselves; in fact, we should find the motivation to tend to practices that keep us healthy and take positive actions forward instead of focusing on doom and gloom. Be gentle with all things that you consume, whether that’s what you ingest, the people you’re around, or how you treat your body and mind. Invest in practices that have you moving, and combine them with a practice like yoga or meditation, things that support your mind and allow you to feel all the feelings without getting stuck in feeling the bad ones.
Things that also help you stay healthy and spend your money wisely during economic downturns include; being mindful of the debt you take on and choosing to spend your income on things that help care for your emotional wellness, such as;
• Staying active, some kind of routine that has you moving most days
• Mindful practices such as yoga, martial arts, meditation
• Healthy food
• Lots of fluids
• Consume what you need instead of trying to keep up with the latest trends.
• Give to others; time or donations.
• Develop practices that allow you to be more loving and kinder to yourself
• Appreciate what you have daily, and find joy in what you’ve already created in your life.
• Spend less than you earn
• Time outside, often.
• Share positive things share ideas that help instead of generating scarcity.
These are just some of the things that will help you feel content and possibly inspire more joy in your life. Choosing to share positive stories or solutions that help you will benefit the people in your life. If we all try and do this, even just a little bit, the impact will be huge.