A Diet For Wolves

A Diet For Wolves

There is an old story about a Cherokee grandfather teaching his grandson about life through a metaphor of two wolves who are fighting. One wolf represents the positive and the other, the negative.  A common misconception is that if you feed the positive wolf, he will become stronger and kill the negative wolf.

This is how we look at positivity a lot of the time. We think that by thinking positively, somehow all the negative things will just disappear. We think we’ll just be happy and optimistic and only feed the positive wolf. And then we wind up feeling irritable and impatient, and realize we’re feeding the negative wolf (How did that happen?!) It becomes a vicious cycle and we become discouraged. Which of course, we see as we’re feeding the negative wolf again (dang it!).

What if we put both of those wolves on a diet? They’re both getting way too much attention at this point anyway.

I’ve struggled with this for years. I came to a conclusion though. I became sick and tired of being grouchy and not being able to maintain a positive mindset and I had an idea. I decided to stop trying to starve out the negative and overfeed the positive. Instead, I would focus on what I’m physically doing throughout the day and choose not to pay attention to the things that cause me to feel irritated. And I gave myself permission to be human and be sensible to the fact that I’m going to mess up. When I do, it’s ok. I’ll just take a timeout and try again.

The big thing I noticed was that when I ignored my triggers, I stopped noticing them as much.

I’m one of those people who can’t stand bad drivers. I was always getting irritated with people on the road. I practiced some defensive driving (always a good idea!) and chose not to give energy to criticizing my fellow motorists. Within the first day, I realized I was calmer and I wasn’t paying nearly as much attention to bad drivers. I wasn’t even seeing them, it was like there were less of them on the road. Plus I was singing along with the stereo and feeling just a little happier than normal.

This is just one example, but it works for anything that vexes you.

This whole experiment became very natural. I didn’t have to think about any of it. It seems to me, that we spend a lot of energy and give a lot of attention to the idea of being mindful and positive.

My advice: Don’t think about it, just do it. This opens our awareness and raises our vibrational frequency.

Give it a try. Put those wolves on a diet.

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