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Tools/Apps

Struggling with Negative Emotions? There is a Path to Joy

Do you feel you suffer from depression, jealousy, anger, hatred, overwhelm, or even just boredom? Maybe not all the time, but from time to time?

We all do. It’s normal. But you can raise your spirits and get out of the doldrums. Here’s how.

Abraham-Hicks Emotional Scale

I have been reading Super Attractor by Gabrielle Bernstein and chapter four discussed the Abraham-Hicks Emotional Guidance Scale in depth. It is an elegant tool which maps out a path from depression at the lowest end of the scale to joy at the highest end. Here is that scale:

  1. Joy / Appreciation / Empowered / Freedom / Love
  2. Passion
  3. Enthusiasm / Eagerness / Happiness
  4. Positive Expectation / Belief
  5. Optimism
  6. Hopefulness
  7. Satisfaction – Contentment
  8. Boredom
  9. Pessimism
  10. Frustration / Irritation / Impatience
  11. Overwhelmed
  12. Disappointment
  13. Doubt
  14. Worry
  15. Blame
  16. Discouragement
  17. Anger
  18. Revenge
  19. Hatred / Rage
  20. Jealousy
  21. Insecurity / Guilt / Unworthiness
  22. Fear / Grief / Depression / Despair / Powerlessness

The essence is that if you find yourself in, for example, a state of anger you should try to find other related thoughts or emotions that are higher up the scale. Gabby also says that distraction can be a great helper in some cases but here’s a couple of examples.

You’re angry (17) about something. But why? Well, turns out your friend’s habit of tapping their umbrella to knock off the excess water after they come in really irritates (10) you. OK, that’s progress (yes, really). Why won’t they stop doing it? Maybe they just need a gentle reminder that your carpet’s not designed for rain (6) so you could mention it next time (4) and you will be happy again (3). We’ve moved up from anger (17) to happiness (3) in a few steps.

In terms of distraction, Gabby gives the example of a little boy who wasn’t picked to move up from Little League. After working through some of the steps to climb the scale they got the boy talking about cars (a topic he absolutely loves) on the way home. It wasn’t long before his mood was uplifted and his joy and passion shone through once more.

These might be simple examples, but you get the idea. For more complex issues you may need to work a little harder to work your way up the scale, or even work with a professional who understands this more deeply. Remember also that avoidance does not classify as “distraction.”

Personally, I found the discovery of this scale enlightening and will be referring to it (often) when I’m feeling down. As an objective tool, it can help you rethink your situation and ask why you’re feeling like you are and, as Gabby says, choose Joy instead (or at least a better alternative).

For more insight into the scale as well as techniques to help you apply it to your own life, buy Gabby’s Super Attractor Book or search for the Abraham-Hicks Emotional Guidance Scale online. I hope you find it as useful as I do.

Fear is the Mindkiller

“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”

— Frank Herbert, Dune

When you read any personal development book or take a course you will always come across fear being referenced as the most limiting belief. A lot of the books give sage advice like “powering through fear is the only way to the other side” because a lot of the fear you have is only manufactured by your mind (we’re not talking about the fear of facing a lion on the savannah here).

Your mind is designed and wired to keep you safe, so fear is a natural instinct geared for this purpose. However, the mind has got a bit confused between real, external threats (like the lion) and drawn in other figureoutable things like fear of rejection, fear of failure, fear of debt, fear of the fall of man-made satellites (it does exist), fear of embarrassment, fear of success, et al, to the point that you can become paralysed into inaction through all these fears.

As you can see from the Emotional Scale, fear is right down there at the bottom. While you might think you can rationalise the feelings you are having and that it’s OK to stay in a state of fear, when you see the relative impact of fear (any fear) on how it affects your emotional well-being you have to find a way to face the fear and get it out in the open. The result is often not as bad as you think. And even if it doesn’t go well, you are free of the self-limiting emotion that holds you back from your path to joy.

You can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs.

— François de Charette, 1742 (from French)

Bonus Manifestation Technique

You may find yourself stuck in one of the lower levels of the emotional scale and can’t seem to figure out how to move up. Well, a follow-on technique called the Abraham-Hicks Emotional Grid could help here.

The tool is designed to look at the problem from another angle so you are not focusing on the negative emotion but looking for the positive. It’s a little bit like using a distraction to flip the script. Here’s how it works.

Draw a 10×6 grid on a sheet of A4 paper. In the centre of the grid write your desire or goal. Think about why you want it and how you would feel when you attain it. Write these positive feeling words in the boxes around the central desire. You don’t have to complete all of the boxes but write as many feelings as you can think of that instinctively feel right. You could also draw it as a mind map if you prefer or get creative and make some (more important) words bigger, bolder or more colourful. Really put your heart into it! You would use separate pieces of paper for each desire.

If you are familiar with the law of attraction, you will know that Feeling is the Secret (as Neville Goddard wrote) and this is a great tool to help you capture these feelings and subconsciously program them into yourself so they become natural.

According to the discussions around this technique, you need to spend at least 17 seconds focusing on the grid/map to help embed it into your psyche and allow the universe to start to work its magic. A minute is better but you can come back to your desire cards periodically (or even daily) as a gentle reminder to yourself of where you want to be and how it will make you feel.

How will you find joy today?

This site is my journey of discovery through various tools, books and general life lessons. These are the things that are helping me become a better human and I hope that they inspire you to find your path, whatever it may be, and to become your own better human too. If there is anything you want me to write about or cover on this site, let me know on the contact page.