Life begets life. Energy creates energy. It is by spending oneself that one becomes rich. – Sarah Bernhart
What an interesting concept, energy creates energy and by sharing ourselves with others all are enriched. Okay, yes, scientifically I know there is a finite amount of energy in this world. BUT that does not change the fact that when I am around folks who are positively energized- jazzed up about what they are working on professionally, or some new hobby, or an upcoming vacation, or just about anything positive- then suddenly I feel more energized too. Somehow there is a wonderful compounding of “this feels good, right, exciting…” and instantly we both feel more energized. I think this momentum can continue to build with each additional person we interact with the rest of the day. When it does, those are superb days for all parties involved and I want as many of them as possible.
Unfortunately the same principle seems to hold true when I am around people who are negatively energized. Heck, they can drain your energy like a vampire or impart a toxic atmosphere where they go. These are the types of folks you find yourself wondering why you are spending your precious time with them, or avoid in the office like the plague, or dread seeing at the family reunion. As a strategy to help me live as happily, sanely and as healthily as possible, I strive to limit or eliminate from my life people who have this effect on me. Sometimes interacting with them is unavoidable, and so in those times, I work to see the individual as a complete person who is flawed like me- as much as I dislike admitting that- and create a visual barrier in my mind, much like my client Rosie did with her Thundercloud, so that I don’t get swept up in the negative energy. What tricks do you use?
I work to keep the ratio of personality energies in my life skewed to the positive. That does not mean that I am never a pill or have a downer mood, or that occasionally I don’t get swept up into the negative energy. The same holds true for all of the positively energized people in my life. But more often then not we are positive, even in the midst of chaos. And when I am not, or they are not, we find away to let it go. It is not a pattern of negativity, and when it does occur the reason is usually pretty good. When an apology is needed it is made then we move on. We are human, not happy robots.
Want to get a sense of the ratio of positively energized to negatively energized people in your life? Go get yourself a piece of paper or two and something to write with. Got it? Okay make two headings, “Positively Energizing” and “Negatively Energizing”. Now take a few minutes to think about the people who come to mind when you reflect on “Positively Energizing” and start writing the folks down. Write until you are done. Then repeat this when reflecting on “Negatively Energizing”. Once you are done making the second list count the number of people under each heading. Where does the balance tip, positively or negatively?
Whether you like the direction the ratio is weighted or not, take a minute or two to think about the person who would positively energize you now. Once you know who that is, find a way to reach out to them.