Week 7: Positivity Bias

My week started with a miracle, which I cannot yet explain: I guess that is what miracles are–unexplainable phenomena. I returned from spending a week in California, not only full of creativity and community and sacred ritual and visiting powerful sacred land, but also a week of glorious weather, eating outside, watching amazing fall colors infused with the brightest sunshine, and talking with the chickens every morning. I returned from all of this bliss into a blizzard dumping a foot and a half of snow making plane landing and car maneuvering a nightmare. I was plane sick, brain foggy, and opted to fall asleep sooner rather than later.

The next morning as I was barely awakening and instinctively beginning to grumble about the clutter all around me, and feeling the heart beat of anxiety about jumping in with both feet into the stream of everyday life, an inner voice said “I will look upon all things with love and I will be born again.” Immediately, my whole body melted into deep relaxation. I don’t know where the voice came from. I don’t know how I reacted so intensely and immediately. I do know that the peace was so profound and so multi-dimensional that I floated in this cocoon of positivity for four days. Negative thoughts never stood a chance. It was so unexpected that I began to wonder whether I was unaware and negative thoughts were probably happening but I was not being enough of an observer.

Then today at the chiropractor office, I asked for a two week extension on paying for my ten visit package and he said no. Wham! The resentment slammed into me. Now, truly, I had no true preference about waiting for two weeks for a ten visit package or paying for the single visit today. But the fact that he said no, sent me into a bundle of fury. Immediately I put on my fake face and acted as if everything was fine . Yet inside the resentment simmered for as long as two hours. I could not believe it.

I also could not believe how, even as I was working to shift out of resentment, it still engendered so many other negative thoughts. The neurons were definitely firing together. What a relief when the cloud finally lifted! The contrast definitely taught me the value of cultivating the positivity bias…and monitorng my thoughts and reactions.