Choosing hope over cynicism, like many choices we are faced with, is much easier said than done. Yes, we believe in mindset, positive attitudes, and positive choices. But when it comes to actual action, cynicism offers the easier path. We all also know that easy isn’t often the correct path, so how do we make today the day to make the hard choice? The day to choose hope instead of cynicism?
“I always find us humans so interesting, changing is considered to be so hard to do. The pain must outweigh the effort to change. Why are we ok with allowing the pain to become overwhelming rather than believing that easing our own suffering is well within our power and a lot less work than hurting all the time.”Theresa Macy, Founder, Integrated Natural Health
Today is really no different than any other day. The sun shone brilliantly through our windows; the birds were constant with their early morning chatter. Our bodies responded to our stretches, either with eagerness to move and create the energetic blood flow of feeling alive or with the dread of sore muscles knowing that more aches and pains await our rugged movement.
The coffee is brewing, blenders are blending, eggs are sizzling. Maybe the forecast is for continued sunshine, maybe a bit of showers, and as we part our curtains to invite in the outdoors, we are greeted with what we want to see.
The view from your window
Although you may have the same view from your window every morning, it is always quite different based on your lens for the day. The cloudy sky could be dark and ominous or it could be offering blessed shade from the heat of the sun. The sunshine could be sweltering heat melting your brain before you even set a toe outside, or it could be glorious warmth energizing your soul during morning yoga. The roses could be points of pain when caring for them or they could be heavenly scents of floral beauty connecting you to Mother Nature and its energetic fuel.
What will you choose to see as you part your curtains for the day? Will you see a day full of darkness and stress? One that will continue to deplete your beliefs in wellness? One that will continue your spiral downwards and give you the feeling of no way out?
Or will you choose to see a day full of light and abundance. One that will enhance your beliefs in wellness? One that will spiral you up and away from the feeling of no way out. One that energizes you to do more, to create more, to be more.
I imagine you have spiraled downward a bit in the past couple of months. Our world definitely has. You want to create change and make things better. But, really what can you do? You’re just one person. How does one person fix the world? Maybe you’re questioning life choices, maybe wondering what the future holds, maybe you don’t care at all. Your bed has made the decision for you. The blankets come up so easily over your head to block everything out.
The Cycle of Cynicism
We’ve all experienced this one way or another and at one time or another. It even has a name: The Cycle of Cynicism. In fact, it takes the Cycle of Cynicism for us to find the Cycle of Hope. It’s not something that comes without work. Just like a healthy relationship or a healthy body or a healthy mind and soul, we have to nurture all of these, every day with conscious effort to keep them thriving. And when a disaster hits, with today meaning a pandemic, increased racism, rioting – not tiny things – we have to work even harder to not fall down that Cycle of Cynicism.
So how do we do that? How do we tear ourselves away from the news? Away from the statistics that paint such a grim future for our world. Away from the social media that feeds our fears? Away from the nay-sayers and Negative Nancies? How do we get out of our slumps that make it so much easier to stay in this cycle? Our world is now paying us more to sit on our ass than move it. And how do we reach our clients to inspire them when we are not in the least bit inspired ourselves?
It all goes back to the power of choice.
During the Cycle of Cynicism, notice that we can still identify problems and we still want to help to solve the problem. The biggest difference here is that we can’t get past the idea that we, as one person cannot make a difference in this problem, so it is much easier to shut down, shut off, and shut out everything.
If it hasn’t been done by you, it hasn’t been done.
Believe it or not the world needs you. Yes, itty bitty little ole’ you. A good friend of mine once said, “If it hasn’t been done by you, it hasn’t been done.” You even have an impact on strangers with your actions, and the really, cool mysterious part is that you more often than not will never know how you had an impact on their lives.
How you may have been the one person that day that gave them the one smile they needed to continue on and to wake up the next day. How you may have been the one person they saw holding a door for a stranger, giving them faith in humanity. How you may have been the one person they heard singing quietly to yourself as you walked obliviously down the street, giving them the encouragement to press the send button on their college application. Or the one person that day that was vulnerable enough to cry outside the grocery store, giving them the strength and courage to cry, too.
It’s a beginning. You’ve heard this mantra thousands of times; you’re in the wellness business. It is your business to create wellness in others. But it is also your business to recognize that your sadness, your spiral downwards, your inability to see the way out…is a part of gaining that wellness. It’s what you have to give to your clients, your perspective…you!
The Cycle of Hope
It is time to recognize that the Cycle of Hope inside you starts from climbing out of the Cycle of Cynicism.
Taking personal responsibility for being a good person.
The first stage of breaking out of the Cycle of Cynicism is to stop blaming others and recognize that you are a good person, even when you aren’t acting like one. We all get frustrated and slam on our horns or yell at a customer service rep, or bitch and moan about our current situation. The thing about us though, when we do this, we see it pretty quickly, and we acknowledge our stressors, we address them, and we come back to being the good people that we are. We climb out of the hole, never giving it much space to hold us in the first place.
Creating a vision of a better world based on your values
Your lens has a profound impact on the world around you. And the world needs your lens. You signed up to be a wellness professional knowing that you wanted to help others feel energized, invigorated, healthy, and vibrant. Those are the values that you give. Those are the values that are needed. Those are how you create a better world.
Seeking out quality information about the world’s problems.
While you may want to find a nice soft pile of sand to sink your inner ostrich head into, you know you cannot do this for long, if at all. So instead of devouring the mainstream news and drowning in social media paraphernalia, you seek out unbiased news, information that helps you and others around you transform and learn from the problems today.
Discovering practical options for action.
No matter how much you want to do everything for everyone, you understand the reality of the situation, and even though you’re a dreamer and believe anything is possible for everyone, your practical side jumps in and does what your heart cannot, the practice of body wellness for each individual.
Acting in line with your values.
There is a reason we are unique and not one-size-fits-all. The world needs each and every one of us to offer their values. You see this and act appropriately. Your strengths are in helping others be well, and that is how you solve problems, by knowing your true self and helping others to do the same.
Recognizing you can’t do everything.
This is the key component. Once you have come to the realization that you cannot and should not do everything, your body and mind react. Your adrenaline flows, your breathing gets a bit quicker, your brain is ignited with ideas, your energy rises up and bubbles over. You are ready. Ready to create. Ready to move forward. Ready to serve. Ready to pivot.
“Leaders lead, teachers teach, healers heal and life-long learners excel because they get creative and design the normal, unveil the new world. They do not sit around waiting. They identify and serve a new need.”Theresa Macy, Founder, Integrated Natural Health
How do I pivot my practice to better serve my clients?
Here at Integrated Natural Health, we will walk you through all the stages of both cycles. Together we will struggle, breathe, listen, talk, meditate, move, create, act, and pivot.
You are a trained wellness professional, and you are excited to connect again with your clients.
We are trained wellness professionals excited to help you connect again with your clients. What you don’t have, we do. Together, we will co-create a plan for you to pivot your practice to better reach your clients today and into the future. This is not a one stop shop. When you work with INH, you get a team of professionals that are as committed to you as you are to your clients and your practice.
Let’s get started.
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To read more about the Cycle of Cynicism and the Cycle of Hope, click here for the full book, The Better World Handbook written by Ellis Jones Ross Haenfler and Brett Johnson.