AND What Is Also Going Well

March 20th, 2016

If you turn on the news, lead stories are almost always about something not going well. Coverage of our political process seems to emphasize the sensational. The tone is negative. The pace is very fast, hooking us into fear and “ain’t it awful” kinds of scenarios. At the same time, workers report crazy levels of intensity, politics, and sheer pace required to keep up in their day-to-day work, feeling overwhelmed and exhausted.

In a climate of bombarding messages about all that is not going well, we still have a choice. We can pile on and join the negative, allowing the fear and anger to color our worlds. We can choose to resist it, fighting and defending an alternative point of view, denying that the anger and fear are present, while not realizing that we have become just as angry and fearful. AND we have another choice.

We can resist nothing. We can stop to acknowledge that all that is going on is actually happening, at least in the minds of those telling the stories and feeling the fear induced by the stories and scenarios they construct. AND after recognizing these voices, we can ask ourselves what is also going well. Because at the same time as the noise is attempting to distract us from seeing the whole picture with perspective, we can choose to find our center. We have the capacity to consciously look for what we can be grateful for and who we appreciate and then give our energy to what is working.

Until we intentionally commit to seeing the whole picture, looking for what is also working, we are out of balance. AND the fun is what happens when we begin to ask what is also going well. An atmosphere of appreciation, gratitude, and humility grows. We, and those we engage in looking for what is working begin to create a different kind of pile on. This one is filled with what else is true. AND in the face of all that light, fear looks different, often disappearing all together.

What today’s climate in this country offers us is the opportunity to choose who we want to be, how we want to feel, and what beliefs, people, and actions are worthy of our energy. What is going on is merely the context in which we choose to focus our attention, insights, and choices.

AND it matters because nothing grows without resources and attention. AND we are the ones responsible for deciding where we will invest our precious energy and gifts. AND every time we pause to simply acknowledge behavior and situations we don’t like AND ask what else is going well, we unplug our energy from the negative and shine a little light for others to find their voice as well. AND we can all feel better.

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