Avoiding Negativity on the Path of Healing
You may have heard it a thousand times already — avoid negativity in your life. In order to keep your vibration high, to stay in your power, to grow spiritually, you need to get rid of negative people, avoid negative environments, and weed out negative thoughts.
But is this true? And is this helpful?
Do We Need to Avoid Negativity?
It may sound inconsistent, but my answer is — yes and no.
Let me start by saying that we are definitely affected by the environment we are in. There is no doubt about that whatsoever.
Whatever you sow, you will reap. If you plant carrots, this is what you will get. You will not have apple trees growing magically out of carrot seeds. In the same way, whatever you put into yourself, into your body, your mind, your energy field, will take root and will start defining who you are. Whatever information, whatever learning, whatever spiritual experiences you choose to devote your time and energy to, will gradually start shaping your perception of the world, of reality, and of the people around you. And it will get reflected in your life.
If you are constantly surrounded by negativity, anger, greed, and any low-vibrational emotions, it will affect you. No doubt about that.
We are all affected by our environments — the cultures we grew up in, the people we work with, the neighborhood we live in. There is no way of avoiding that. Sometimes, we can change our lives quite dramatically by merely changing our environment, such as by moving to a different city or attending a different school.
Remember the tale of the ugly duckling who in reality turned out to be a beautiful swan? There is a quote attributed to Einstein, “if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” The “duckling” was only ugly until he found his own tribe.
I don’t believe it is always possible to grow where we’re planted. Just like the ugly duckling, we may need to search for our own people, our own bliss, our own soul tribe, which may be very different from the one we were born into.
But What is Negativity?
The above does not mean hiding from the truth or avoiding our own healing. Avoiding negativity at all costs may be a sign of spiritual blindness, rather than a high vibration. What makes us think that growth and healing always have to be effortless and painless? Are we really so enlightened that we don’t need purification and learning?
Very often, especially in the healing profession, we attract people who work on the exact same issues that we are working on. Sometimes, these would be things that we healed, or are working on healing, but sometimes our encounters will point out stuff that we have been denying about ourselves.
Persistent negativity or running into the same issues over and over again (“why is this happening to me again?”) is sometimes a perfect indicator of the issues that our soul has been trying to heal for lifetimes. Each encounter is a mirror to an extent, even an encounter with an enemy or someone who seeks to harm us. In kabbalistic writings, enemies are defined as unrectified sparks of our own soul root that are seeking redemption and healing.
Often, we will accuse another of exactly the things we are most needing to work on ourselves.
Often, we will accuse another of exactly the things we are most needing to work on ourselves. It’s simply easier to see the issues in others than in ourselves. Think of it as a mirror that suddenly reveals blemishes and flaws in our complexion. But make no mistake — our own soul leads us to those specific people, those specific circumstances, those seeming disasters, to heal. To heal, not to punish. To heal wounds and trauma that may have remained unhealed for lifetimes.
What are you projecting onto people that you hate the most? What kind of negativity are you running away from? What is it you don’t want to face about yourself?
My Own Story
A little more than a year ago, a friend of mine became a part of a group that was very cultic in nature. I was upset with him, and for him, but I was also angry with him and the group. I felt betrayed in my belief in him as a smart person. I was angry that I couldn’t look up to him anymore. How dare he suddenly do something that stupid? How could he possibly be so needy, so desperate, that he fell for this love-bombing and brainwashing?! Every time he approached me with cliches and standard phrases, I would get so furious, because I saw where this was coming from.
I didn’t want to have anything to do with him anymore. And at the time, and under the circumstances, this may have even been the right decision.
But what was this situation mirroring to me that I didn’t want to see about myself?
Anger is a secondary emotion that points to a deeper, hidden and unhealed wound. What was it that was really making me angry?
Was I truly standing in my own power at that time, or was I giving my power away? Did I want my happiness to depend on my friend? Did I want him to lead me, to be my teacher, to be my inspiration? And was I ready to stand in my own power, or was I myself trying to give it away to spiritual teachers and religious authorities, to a set of rules, that, if followed, would let me feel comfortable with myself, would let me feel accepted, and allow me to tick off the good deeds on my checklist?
In truth, it is the same thing — to give away the power of decisions away to someone, to let the “guru” decide for you, or to give away the power of happiness, feelings and joy. “It is because of you I am feeling this way!”
I was afraid of making my own spiritual decisions, and this was what upset me the most with my friend. Seeing him being “led astray” hurt so much because it reflected the pain of my own soul. Ultimately, how could we control the choices of another? His experience, and my frustration with it only mirrored my own issues onto me, the issues that I didn’t want to, or was unable to see.
“Negativity” as a Healing Tool
Negativity around you is only there to show you the parts of yourself that you need to heal. You don’t have to protect yourself against negativity at all costs. Believe it or not, it’s normal, and human to get upset, sad, or confused. It is not about never falling — it is about rising every time. You don’t have to always be positive. Negativity is there to trigger you, to force you to be mercilessly honest with yourself, to seek healing and guidance.
No matter how much affirmations or gratitude we have done, we have to get in touch with our anger, pain and frustration. Negative experiences are not gong away, nor do we have to be afraid of them, or let them take our focus away from the light. Sometimes, they will simply be there to remind us of what we used to be like, and how much we have grown.
Let us express gratitude and show love to the unhealed world around us and within us! And gradually, we will learn to dance with negativity as our greatest, even though unwelcome, teacher.