Good Vibes When Appropriate
Messages such as “good vibes only,” “everything happens for a reason,” and “just think happy thoughts” have become ubiquitous (especially if the algorithms identify you as having an interest in wellness practices). While it’s wonderful to feel positive emotions, suffering is part of the human experience. The truth of the matter is that we are all multi-faceted. We experience happiness, joy, contentment, fear, anger, guilt, sadness, and a whole range of emotions. When positivity is used in excess to silence or mask real emotions, it ends up becoming toxic and undermines authentic human emotional experience, paving the way for denial, resentment, and suppression of feelings. The Bhagavad Gita describes sattvic happiness that acknowledges the truth of the world; pain, suffering, injustice, as well as joy and beauty - an antidote to toxic positivity.
Embrace the good vibes when they come, but also know it's ok to feel the bad vibes when they come as well. You can simply acknowledge when a situation is difficult and that difficulty is part of life. It's something that you've experienced before and everyone around you has experienced before too. Remember that no matter how hard the situation is you can still be kind to yourself.
I recorded a short guided meditation with two journaling prompts at the end to help you find self-compassion in the midst of suffering. You'll find it in the on-demand library.
Wishing you peace,