Agitation - a Sure Sign You're Relinquishing Your Power
For me, this year is all about finding more ways to harvest abundance. Reap the rewards available to me when I am comfortable in my skin and expressing who I am in the world. Fully. Regardless of the situation I’m in. I have some compelling personal evidence that an abundance of good things come my way when I stay the course of steering towards what gives me joy and away from anything that doesn’t. (Like, for example, when I do this, I experience…… more joy.)
Naturally, it’s sometimes a significant challenge to stay true to myself and unapologetic, particularly when I am up against my perceived shortcomings. I have a strong commitment to exploring ways I can grow and develop, so I can’t just dismiss feelings because they are not joyful or they “bring me down.” I have come to understand that those feelings are actually flags, calling attention to outdated ways I protect myself and they need to be examined. They are actually pure gold in terms of getting to know myself better. Nothing like a good bout of insecurity, unpleasant stress or agitation to point out a place where I believe being me in the world isn’t safe.
This past week I listened to an audio book about how a whole food, plant based diet can prevent, suspend, or, often, reverse virtually every disease killing modern man. OK, truthfully I listened to most of the book, until I recognized that the book itself was having a detrimental effect on my health.
’m a sucker for this particular form of information. The book is written by a doctor so he already knows more than me, plus he’s trained in the scientific method, so it would go against his nature to mislead me. The work he does is for a nonprofit (that he created) so he must not be in it for the money. He’s one of the good guys and I can put my health in his hands. He promises to steer me in the right direction, toward evidence based health recommendations. I can relax, stay open to the message, suspend my own judgements and opinions.
The book opens with a story about his grandmother and how she was told she was terminal but lived another 20 years in vibrant health because she did what he is recommending I now do. This alone should have been a warning sign not to leave myself open to this man’s influence. It’s a classic snake oil salesman strategy. Generate empathy, demonstrate that you have skin in the game.
Still, I listened to 12 or 14 hours of this fellow going on and on about studies that, though inconclusive, seemed to indicate this or that. While he certainly cited a number of properly designed studies, he failed to differentiate between correlation and causation and spoke in terms of how eating certain nutrients may help to ward off or reverse this or that chronic or fatal condition.
When there was no scientific evidence to support a suggestion, he would acknowledge this, but suggest I take his advice anyway as there was little to no risk involved.
He unequivocally supported a whole food, plant based diet, painting all animal foods including dairy as, basically, poisonous to humans. He even got into the risk of salmonella poisoning from improperly cooked animal products, completely failing to acknowledge the risk of the same poison from improperly washed plant based foods. Without seriously considering things like emotional well being and fitness level, he insisted that, beyond any reasonable doubt, eating a whole food plant based diet was the answer to what ails the western world.
I could go on and on, pointing out all the ways this guy turned science on its ear to further his own agenda but I need to remember that isn’t the point I’m trying to make here. It’s just that I get so damn agitated……!!!!!
Why am I agitated??? Because I was hoping to use the information in the book as a magic bullet that would hurtle me towards weight loss and health! I was hoping to just adopt his answers and not have to do the hard work of connecting with myself and resolving whatever is going on for me around my food choices. I wanted an easy answer but the solutions he offered just didn’t sit well. I couldn’t accept them. They went against some things I know for sure. And it pissed me off.
It’s human nature to wish for our problems to be solved by external forces. We want someone else to solve every issue, from world peace to keeping the house clean. And when they don’t, when people inevitably fall short of our expectations (as people will do, because they are only humans like ourselves) we may find ourselves feeling agitated.
Do you see the connection? Agitation is a sign that we are wishing for someone to solve the problem for us and they aren’t doing it. Meaning we have a problem in the first place, something we are unhappy about and are not yet addressing. We need to do something about it! True power is found in identifying and resolving our own problems, because these problems are actually sign posts pointing to areas of potential growth.
True power is discovering, establishing, knowing we are able to resolve our own problems and that doing so is the path forward. Developing and using our internal resources to resolve agitation, insecurity or stress allows us to grow, become full of personal power, become powerful. Allowing or adopting answers from outside ourselves is giving that power away.