I've really been digging Steve Pavlina's website and think he's got lots of good things to say. I just went through this EXACT SAME question and lesson in my class tonight with Susan Gregg, so it's fascinating to see it turn up again, one hour later in my email inbox. Thanks for reinforcing a lesson I obviously am still learning...
Last night in my dream class I dreamed I was being chased and as I was running I realized it was my fat self trying to "catch" me...think there's some fear lurking about here?
It's all good! Shirley
"The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams." —Eleanor Roosevelt
i like your post but have to say that i believe that you can want to improve yourself for selfish reasons that are still "in the light". it is a subtle distiction, I know. But i believe it is there.
I want to lose weight for me because it is the right thing to do for my soul and I can achieve more of my souls (which are mine also) desires. I believe by aligning myself with my soul purpose I am in the light, however, to some, it may appear selfish.
oh, btw, i copied your picture of fat/muscle and put it on my spark page too. i then posted about it in about 1000 spots, give or take a few.
Edited by: BETHECHANGE at: 3/25/2007 (20:01)
"If you're going through hell, keep going"--Winston Churchill Be not afraid of going slowly, be afraid of standing still. --Chinese proverb Even the darkest hour only has 60 minutes--Morris Mandel Sometimes a door opens and a human being becomes a way for grace to come through. Rumi
Hi, I just read this on intentions and went WOW! Actually revised my spark page using some of the wording from this article. It talks about whether your intentions for weight loss are purely "selfish"/fear motivated or a bit more altruistic/love oriented. I had decided to be very honest on my blog and stuff here to inspire others and hope others also learn by what doesn't work for me so in the author's opinion I'm on the right track.
What role does polarity play in health-oriented intentions such as the desire to lose weight? Does polarity have a practical application to something like weight loss?
Let’s say you want to lose weight, so you form the following intention, where XXX represents your goal weight:
I weigh XXX pounds.
Now what is the polarity of this intention? Is this a love-based (outflowing) intention or a fear-based (inflowing) intention? See if you can figure out the polarity of this intention right now. Then I’ll share the answer with you.
If you guessed that this is a fear-polarized intention, I’m afraid you’re wrong. Unfortunately, you’re also wrong if you guessed that it’s a love-polarized intention. The correct answer is that it’s a trick question. Sorry if I tricked you, but please let me ’splain…
Remember that polarity applies only to a thought’s energy, not its content. So the mere text of a thought doesn’t dictate the thought’s polarity. Since I only gave you the thought’s content, I didn’t provide enough information for you to determine the polarity.
The specific words you use to phrase an intention do not matter much compared to the energy you put into the thought. An intention like “I weigh XXX pounds” can be either polarity or it can be neutral. It depends on why you want the weight loss.
Do you want to lose weight because you’ll gain more energy to serve others (love)? Or do you want to lose weight because you’ll gain more energy to pursue your self-centered goals (fear)?
Maybe you want to lose weight because it will help you attract a mate. But do you want to attract a mate because you want to express your love with someone on a very deep level (love/outflow)? Or are you mostly afraid of being alone (fear/inflow)?
Our true motivations for an intention can be very complex. You might have a dozen valid reasons for wanting to lose weight. But ultimately when you keep asking, “Why do I want this?” and trace each reason to its source, you’ll end up with a combination of love- and fear-based motives. Either you want something because of your desire to express love, or you want it because of your desire to assuage your fears.
Now this whole notion of polarization tells us that the more polarized your intention is (either pure love or pure fear but not both), the more easily it will manifest.
Fear and love are powerful motivators, but when you mix them together, they dilute each other. Intentions of mixed polarity are shoulds. Fully polarized intention are musts.
Suppose you are a lightworker, someone who is love-polarized. And you realize that you need to lose some weight. Your motivation to lose that weight will ultimately come from your commitment to serving the greater good. Since we all serve as role models for each other, you would want to serve as a positive role model for others. You would also want to have abundant energy available for fulfilling your purpose. You’d also want to feel good about your body, so you can help others feel good about their bodies too. The fitness level you achieve for yourself is driven by your desire to serve and inspire others. This is a very powerful motivator for someone who is truly love-polarized.
Now suppose you are a darkworker, someone who is fear-polarized. And you realize that you need to lose some weight. Your motivation to lose that weight will ultimately come from your commitment to serving your own self-interest. You could care less about being a role model for others, but this extra weight has to go because it’s getting in the way of your goals. You need energy to achieve the success you crave, and a better looking body will make it easier to attract a mate to satisfy your lust. Weight loss may also help you advance in your career. Also, it’s important to be more fit than those around you, since you’re always in competition with them, and extra fitness will give you an edge. The fitness you achieve for yourself is driven entirely by your desire to serve your own needs. How fit or fat other people are is irrelevant, except to the extent that you look better by comparison. This is a very powerful motivator for someone who is truly fear-polarized.
Now the interesting thing is that the lightworker and the darkworker may go on the same diet, adopt the same exercise program, and achieve a similar level of fitness. But they’ll each be doing it for very different reasons. Our lightworker is driven by the desire to serve and inspire others, while our darkworker is driven by the competitive desire to dominate others. So our lightworker would be more inclined to help others lose weight and encourage people to improve their diet and exercise habits. Our darkworker would only help others for personal gain.
How much emphasis our lightworker and darkworker place on health depends on their specific mission, how they are expressing their polarity. For some a high level of fitness will be very important. For others only a certain degree of functional fitness will be necessary.
Most likely you’re neither a lightworker or a darkworker, but you can still apply polarity to an intention to lose weight to make it easier to succeed. Here are a couple examples.
Losing weight with love
To lose weight in a love-polarized way, you might form a support group of people who also want to lose weight. You would commit yourself to their weight loss as well as your own, celebrating their milestones as your own personal victories. You might start a blog to share your weight loss insights with people around the world. You might even kick off something like the Million Dollar Experiment with an intention based around weight loss, and allow people to track their progress. You’d probably provide the service for free or for a very nomimal fee if you can reasonably do so, so you can help as many people as possible. This commitment to helping others is going to boost your own motivation for losing weight. It’s no longer a should — it’s a must. People are looking up to you as their role model. You’re not just doing this for yourself; you’re part of a team. Does this help you get an idea of how you’d approach weight loss from the standpoint of love polarization?
Losing weight with fear
Now how would you lose weight with fear polarization? Forget about helping others. This is all about you — your pleasure and your pain. In this case you’ll use fear to create more pressure, so you’re driven to succeed. Once you identify your goal weight, make a bet with someone you dislike that you’ll achieve your goal by a certain date, someone you know will just rub it in your face if you fail. If s/he doesn’t want to bet you, then just promise to pay them if you fail. Make sure there are witnesses. If you have a blog, post a before picture of yourself there, and promise your readers that you’ll reach your goal weight by a certain date and that you’ll post an after picture showing significant weight loss… and if you fail, you’ll post a video of yourself doing something extremely embarrassing. For good measure, promise yourself a vacation or some other reward when your goal is achieved. Think often of how hot you’ll look to members of the opposite sex (or same sex if that’s your preference), and how much better you’ll be at satisfying your lust. Does this help you understand how to use fear polarization to lose weight?
Plain text can’t do justice to polarized intentions, since we’re still reducing energy to content, but I think these examples will help you see the big picture. In each case we’re using polarized energy to make the intention very strong.
A blended approach?
What would happen if you tried to combine both approaches? What if you blended the love strategy with the fear strategy? If you try to do that, you’ll end up with a diluted why… one composed of two shoulds instead of a single must. The problem with mixing both of these polarities together is that they’ll dilute each other, so your motivation will be greatly reduced. A single polarity provides a level of clarity and focus that drives you with much greater intensity than an energetically mixed intention. How can you express love and fear at the same time?
You see… in order to use fear polarization, you have to hold a mindset that’s inconsistent with love polarization, and vice versa. While it might seem possible if you’ve never tried it, in practice it simply doesn’t work. You might be able to mix bits and pieces of both techniques, but you’ll get the best results if your underlying motivation is either service or selfishness, and the techniques you select arise from that singular motive. Nevertheless, if you still think a blended approach will work, go ahead and try it for yourself to see what happens. It’s probably an experience you need to have, and you’ll learn far more by making that attempt than you will by reading this text.
You can certainly extend the ideas in this article to apply to other areas like relationships, family, and finances. Using polarized intentions is about being effective. Having supportive relationships is better than having no help at all, so both polarities would want decent relationships. Having more resources is better than being broke or in debt, so again both polarities would aim to have sufficient resources. But in each case the underlying motivations would be different. A love-polarized person seeks leverage to increase his/her service. A fear-polarized person seeks leverage to increase his/her personal gain above all other considerations. Someone who aims to serve others while not being able to pay their bills wouldn’t be much of a lightworker, and someone who strives to dominate others while slogging around in a body that’s 100 pounds overweight wouldn’t be much of a darkworker.
~~~~~~~~~~ A cheerful heart does good like medicine, but a broken spirit makes one sick. Proverbs 17:22 (TLB)
SparkPeople, SparkCoach, SparkPages, SparkPoints, SparkDiet, SparkAmerica, SparkRecipes, DailySpark, and other marks are trademarks of SparkPeople, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
SPARKPEOPLE is a registered trademark of SparkPeople, Inc. in the United States, European Union, Canada, and Australia. All rights reserved.