A Negativity Loop is one that keeps repeating but leaves us feeling powerless to act, flailing about internally, or in a negative state of mind; angry, frustrated, empty, hopeless, disappointed, jealous, or suspicious. A Negativity Loop may even deceive us into believing that certain negative conversations and communications are empowering acts but these conversations are merely extensions of the Negativity Loop, reinforcing the Negativity Loop and can even spread the Negativity Loop like a mind virus. This is how Negativity Loops are used to manipulate individuals and the masses.
Negativity Loops (NLs) block healthy behavior. Negativity Loops inhibit clear thinking and inhibit positive action. Negative loops have a tendency to paralyze us. Negativity Loops paralyze us first internally; then, with our actual freedom of movement and concentration.
One of the most impressive attributes of Negativity Loops is that they have the power to deceive us into believing that we are being productive, thinking critically and analytically, but what is actually going on is nothing more than a rehashing of the same internal scripts that we have rehearsed over and over to make ourselves feel better, self-sooth; this is ironic because the negative spiral only further distances us from our creative, open and positively energized self.
When we understand and recognize our Negativity Loops we can adjust them, intervene and disrupt them, but when we don’t recognize NLs, when we don’t understand NLs, we not only fall victim to them but we wind up knocked off balance. Negativity Loops can be and are intentionally created and exploited by others to manipulate us, control our thinking and by extension of throughput affect our behaviors. The use of Negativity Loops are used by individuals, organizations, and agencies.
Sometimes we are powerless to act, unable to prevent them from being initiated, other times we are able to take direct action by cutting them off, or being preventative by knowing how we respond to certain people, situations, and other influences.
Negativity Loops don’t need to be ruminative, although they frequently are, negative thoughts going around and around on their own dark carousel. NLs can be occasional, just sort of pop up now and then, seemingly to appear on their own, but they are often triggered, or cued.
What’s important to realize is that NLs are occurring, recurring and holding us up, distracting us from what is important in our lives, and distracting us from what we can take direct action on, or keeping us in situations we should remove ourselves from. It’s also helpful to understand what might initiate or cue a Negativity Loop. Every moment we spend in the grasp of NLs is another moment of joy, inner peace or creative thinking we have lost.
Some common catalysts for NLs are
- Various fears and phobias (which are their own NLs)
- Exposure to negative thoughts and images via social media, YouTube, print or other media
- Social circles, family, friends, acquaintances, professional relationships
Negativity Loops are not only thoughts that are preoccupied with animosity, anger and contempt, but also with fantasy relationships (the princess and the prince, celebrities, elected officials, sport figures), obsession with others who are close to us, or those who we grant access to through social media, messaging or other social interactions, as well as craving approval or acceptance, which is an extension of a malformed desire to love and be loved in return, a natural and positive thought pattern.
This is by no means an exhaustive list or complete run down of what and how Negativity Loops are or how to deal with them. I will continue to expand on this area of cognition and consciousness, as well as introduce tactics to help navigate away, or learn to use NLs in genuinely self-empowering ways, harvesting NLs at will for our use rather than being acted upon and controlled by them.
Finding peace in our lives may not be for everyone, it may not even be for you at this time in your life. Many people enjoy the inner chaos they live in and the outer chaos it creates. They might not know why they embrace the chaos, why they enjoy it, and why they have become dependent upon the chaos, but they do, maybe you?
There are many who don’t have the slightest understanding how our inner and outer worlds are connected. We tend to only see how life unfolds before us as “how the world works”, not a reflection of who we are, the choices we make and the consequences of those choices.
There are countless folks who are constantly finding themselves arguing with other people, fighting a nonstop battle against the world, upset, angry, frustrated, disappointed and perplexed as to why their lives don’t move forward. When looking at these people’s situations it appears on the surface that they don’t like this constant conflict. They don’t like how others are treat and respond to them. After all, if they liked it, they wouldn’t be angry, and upset right?
It may even be you who is out there looking for a fight in public, social media, in your family, with friends, then living in a state of aggravation, and allowing those negative experiences to govern your life. It takes a massive amount of self-honesty to acknowledge the fact that you actually like the agitation, the frustration, the fighting, the never-ending conflict. I’ve definitely been there.
There are countless ways we justify and rationalize this lifestyle, if we ever take the time to do so. These people (and I am/have been one) also have ways to find each other outside of their awareness, almost like a secret encrypted message that is picked up and responded to. These signals are not like signs held up by limo drivers at an airport saying “Conflict here!”, it’s more like a collection of signals that all work together to guide us in the direction that we consciously and unconsciously want to go. We may travel down that path sometimes for a few days, other times on a major life detour like years, until it all inevitably BLOWS UP…AGAIN! Which, as it turns out, is just fine, until it isn’t.
At some point it we might look inside & outside yourself and say “this isn’t working for me, I need a change. I need to change.”
You may have already said or thought things like “I want to lose weight”, “I’m sick of fighting with people”, “I am sick of being angry at the world”; or, you have been giving yourself signals, like “Why are there so many negative people?”, “Everyone is always disappoints.”
There are plenty of legitimate things to be frustrated & angry about but allowing those things to live inside your head and continue to govern your behavior without any direct control over their outcome or influence is a sure fire formula for frustration and disappointment and stagnation.
If you are genuinely sick and tired of frustration, anger, and disappointment it’s time to look at your choices, and your habitual thinking patterns. The good news is that there is a way out, the challenging news is that it will take time, dedication and may initially look and feel like sacrifice. However, after the initial period of sacrifice, a paradigm shift will occur, a new way of seeing the world will come into focus, and what once felt like a sacrifice will feel like a gift. It will feel like freedom.
Living in Congruence
Living in Congruence means that we align our thinking and beliefs with our behaviors. When we live in congruence we make choices that make sense with our beliefs and principles. When we don’t live in congruence with ourselves we are pulled apart internally, and it happens all the time.
Some classic examples of how people live outside of congruence.
- We think we want to lose weight, but we keep eating and drinking foods that make us fat.
- We think we want to quit smoking, but we keep smoking.
- We say we love our kids, but we find ourselves yelling at them, some even hitting them.
- We are members of a religion that teaches love and care for humanity, but we support leaders who pursue destructive, selfish, violent and oppressive policies.
- We maintain destructive relationships with people who leave us feeling drained, marginalized, deceived or taken advantage of.
- We see ourselves as kind but we freely insult others.
Change, real change, starts with personal insight, self-awareness and a willingness to be honest with oneself. There may be a period of letting go of a part we have attached ourselves to. A period of self-forgiveness, a release of behaviors; often the most difficult shift is in our relationships.
You get one chance at today, how are you going to live it?