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The Spiritual Path To Manage Emotions For Positive Outcomes – 5 Steps To A Better Life And World

Written by: Laurie Levin, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.


In a recent small gathering with author and spiritual leader, Marianne Williamson, she said there are three ways you can respond to today’s world.

  1. Through a material filter

  2. By developing a new filter

  3. Transforming the trauma of this time

In the first scenario, we only see the things that are not working, that are falling apart, and we are always at the effect of the chaos.

In the second scenario, we are beginning to realize that if you look beyond what you can see with your eyes, and understand the situation at a deeper level, you can in fact endure whatever comes your way because you know you will endure.

The first scenario can make the situation worse. The second scenario usually maintains the status quo.

In the third scenario, we begin to transform the challenge or trauma, along with our lives and the world.

Three different responses. Three different trajectories.

While our discussion with Marianne was about the challenges we face collectively; locally, nationally, and globally, we can expand the net to include how we, individually, respond to challenges and the circumstances of our lives.

Whether our challenges arise at home, at the job, with our health, or in relationships, our responses create the outcomes of our lives and that’s good news. In other words, the event does not equal your outcome. Your outcome equals the event plus your response which means you have much to say about the outcome!

It’s the challenges that come up in our lives that give us the greatest opportunity to learn and grow, transform the challenge into an opportunity, increase our resilience, and overcome hurdles that have tripped us up in the past; sometimes again and again and again. As we learn how to change the way we respond to the circumstances of our lives and our challenges, we rewire our neural circuitry, accordingly, and are more apt to respond positively to challenges and frustrations in the future.

In a stressful situation, we react to the circumstance or event negatively, piling more negativity into our lives and those around us. That’s because, in a stress state, all the brain can do is go to our prior response pattern. These patterns get hardwired into our neural circuity and it’s like a button is pressed and there we go—adding more negativity into the world, into our lives, and into the lives of those we love.

We can find all kinds of reasons to justify our reaction when someone insults, disappoints, or betrays us. How different life can be, however, when we take just a moment to ask ourselves one simple question: What outcome do I want?

Is it?

  • Peace within self and family

  • Love

  • Respect

  • Health

  • Happiness

  • Collaboration/partnership/team

  • Self-growth

If you answered yes to any of the above, then your responses must be:

  • Peaceful

  • Loving

  • Respectful

  • Health generating

  • Kind and caring

  • Collaborative

  • With a willingness to alter course

Let’s take a few examples:

You feel insulted, dismissed, or ignored.

You can decide that two can play this game and insult, dismiss, or ignore right back. OR you can excuse yourself from the conversation if you feel you are not able to respond positively at that moment. You can ask for greater understanding, or say “I’m sorry you feel that way,” or say to yourself this is an opportunity to grow—appreciate the opportunity and listen within for the best response—which might be no response at all.

Traffic is keeping you from getting to an important meeting on time.

You can allow anger (fear) to overcome you, begin yelling out the window, hitting the steering wheel, or honking the horn. OR you can take the opportunity for some deep breathing to optimize your health and prepare yourself for the meeting, taking note that you chose health, peace, and happiness. Yay, you!

Your child, after being told not to do something, does it anyway.

Will frustration and anger lead the way? Or, will you ask yourself, what outcome do I want? What do I value most? Perhaps the focus in that moment is your child’s safety so you hug them and tell them the lesson you want them to learn. Perhaps you want your child to understand there are consequences to each action they take and therefore with love in your heart you come up with a plan together to ensure it doesn’t happen again.

Your boss decides on someone else for the promotion you feel you deserve.

You can choose to confront the boss with anger, throw something, or pack up your things and quit. OR you can have a discussion with your boss on why they made the choice they did. You can appreciate the opportunity to reassess your work there or opportunities to improve and then take the time to make a well-thought-out and considered response.

If you react negatively to a challenge, circumstance, or event in your life, you create another event that you and oftentimes others will have to deal with. When you respond positively and in alignment with what you value most, you create a trajectory that is transformative—one that in many instances, improves circumstances for all concerned. Positive responses, in other words, yield positive outcomes.

What does a transformative filter through which we can live our lives look like? Here are five steps, no matter what the particulars of the event or circumstances are, you can create positive outcomes that will optimize your health, happiness, and performance.

1: Expand self-awareness ongoing

Know your core values—those things you most value in life such as family, peace, love, harmony, health, faith, learning, etc., so that you can choose your responses accordingly. Be able to rattle them off quickly.

Pursue an increasing AND loving awareness of your flaws. It is in the heightened awareness of our flaws, we can transform them, and accept them in others, increasing both resilience and compassion.

2: Reduce stress throughout the day

Unmanaged stress results in unmanaged emotions which hijack the brain and result in those negative reactions and patterns of the past. Remember, we’re talking about transformation and new more positive trajectories forward.

I recommend the HeartMath® techniques to reduce stress and anxiety in the moment it is occurring and when it is most damaging to your health, relationships, and performance. Most of the techniques take seconds to a few minutes.

3: Pause

When something occurs that is stressful in your life, pause. Take several breaths. Know that anything difficult, anything upsetting, anything that triggers you, is a golden opportunity to learn something, to grow, and become a better version of yourself. Welcome these opportunities. Appreciate them. Get skillful with the pause. Enjoy that moment of silence knowing you are managing your internal workings for your benefit and everyone else’s as well.

4: Listen

Now that you have quieted the noise in your head brain by pausing and appreciating the current situation, LISTEN. Listen to what your heart is telling you. The answers are there because your core values are there.

In a stressed state, all you will hear is a lot of noise that is coming from that hijacked brain. The answers are not there! The answers come when the heart and brain are working together. We call it heart coherence.

Heart coherence is the optimal state to live your life as you optimize your health, responses, and performance when you are in the state of heart coherence.

5: Respond In Alignment With Your Heart’s Desires to Create Life As You Want It

Now you are ready to respond in alignment with what matters most to you (your core values) and what you want more of in your life. Remember, that oftentimes the best response is no response at all.

The world can use a little less knee-jerk, head-brain, ego-driven, and incoherent reactions. More and more, it is becoming clear that lies, corruption, violence, anger, complaining, resentment, frustration, and angst anywhere is felt everywhere. We are all in this together. What you transform in your own life, we transform in the world.

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Laurie Levin, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Laurie Levin is an author (Call Me A Woman: On Our Way to Equality and Peace) and Transformation Coach. She specializes in optimal nutrition, healthy weight loss, and the leading HeartMath® stress reduction techniques. She has been a featured speaker on each of these topics. Laurie has an MBA, is a Certified Coach, and HeartMath® Certified Coach, supporting clients globally to achieve their health and well-being goals. Her new book, Call Me A Woman: On Our Way to Equality and Peace, provides real-life experiences, global studies, and insights, and the 7 Habits of Equality that will reshape the world into one where all children have equal opportunities, from the beginning to the end of their lives. Healthy happy equal: It takes all 3 to thrive!



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