I have been discussing the following concept with a number of people this week, so let’s visit it again: your rights. As you go through life, you learn that you have the right to be angry if something happens you do not like. You also are taught that you have the right to be frustrated, resentful, worrisome, fearful, stressful, anxious, unforgiving, critical, and self-critical. Today, I ask you to give up these old rights.
The reason I call all of these negative emotions “rights” is because that is how they are treated in your lives. Here is an example:
You are driving on the highway and somebody cuts you off. You slam on your brakes barely avoiding an accident, and the person who cut you off speeds away. You are angry…angry that you got cut off, angry and frustrated that he sped away, angry and frustrated and resentful that nothing bad will happen to this person to punish him for having cut you off and almost causing a serious accident.
And, when you tell your family and friends about it, with the anger spilling out of you, what does everybody say, “You have every right to be angry. I would be angry, too!” I understand this because this is how I was, pre-Parkinson’s.
Now, using the same scenario post-Parkinson’s, I would slam on the brakes avoiding the accident, catch my breath, and then I would give gratitude (lots of gratitude) for being safe and sound with no damage to the car or any of the occupants. And then, I would let it go. However, if I was to mention the situation, a response might be something to the effect of, “I am happy there was not an accident and nobody got hurt, but I do not know how you can be so calm about it. The other guy got away with it and you have every right to be angry; I know I would be angry if I was in your shoes.”
You are taught that these negative emotions are your rights, and you are rewarded by inclusion when you exercise them. Often, you are questioned like there is something wrong with you when you choose to not exercise your “rights.” I do not know about the rest of you, but nobody ever sat me down and said, “You have the right to be joyful, happy, fearless, compassionate, content, loving, accepting, forgiving, and grateful.”
So, if you are like me, and nobody ever told you these things, let me be the first to introduce you to your set of new rights:
YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE JOYFUL, HAPPY, FEARLESS, COMPASSIONATE, CONTENT, LOVING, ACCEPTING, FORGIVING, AND GRATEFUL!!!
The negative emotions are in your mind, and your mind runs rampant with negative ideas of what life is like with Parkinson’s and Parkinson’s symptoms. Your new rights come from your heart! Your mind is driven by Adrenaline. Your heart releases your dopamine.
It is time to make the transformations that will change your life. The Parkinson’s Recipe for Recovery® assists you in making this transformation. As the negative emotions surface, transform them into the positive emotions. The negative emotions are habitual…simply put, they are so strongly built into you throughout your life that they just surface in response to the events of life.
This is actually a gift of Parkinson’s symptoms. Your Parkinson’s symptoms get worse when you experience any of the negative emotions. These symptoms provide a built-in notification system that says, “My reaction to what was just said or done is an exacerbation of symptoms.” When you get the notification and have this kind of awareness, you are ready to exercise your new rights.
Using my car example above, transform anger over the situation into gratitude over the outcome. The mind is very tricky. The mind wants to pull out its parade of horribles and say, “If the other car would have hit you, think about all of the terrible things that would have occurred.” The mind pulls you out of the moment and it runs to all of the terrible outcomes that could have occurred. The mind pulls you out of reality and into supposition, illusion, and fear of what could have occurred.
The heart keeps you in the moment and says with heart-felt gratitude, “Look at what really happened here. You avoided an accident, there is no car damage, and nobody in the car got hurt. Feel gratitude.”
Bottom line is this:
Keeping your old rights is a choice. It keeps you in Adrenaline-driven mind mode and exacerbates your symptoms.
Giving up your old rights and transforming them into your new rights also is a choice. It puts you in your heart and releases your Dopamine, moving you closer to your cure.
As all of you know, when you choose your mind over your heart, you choose anger, frustration, resentment, stress, anxiety, worry, and fear.
Likewise, all of you know, when you choose your heart over your mind, you choose joy, happiness, fearlessness, compassion, contentment, love, acceptance, forgiveness, and gratitude…Dopamine, Dopamine, Dopamine!!!
You can give up your old rights by transforming them into your new rights. You will be able to view the world and participate in life from your heart. This is not an easy transformation to make, but I know this will change your life, and each and every one of you is worth it.
Keeping your old rights is a choice.
Giving up your old rights and transforming them into your new rights also is a choice.
The choice is yours. Let’s chant together and begin your transformation:
I have the right to be JOYFUL.
I have the right to be HAPPY.
I have the right to be FEARLESS.
I have the right to be COMPASSIONATE.
I have the right to be CONTENT.
I have the right to be LOVING.
I have the right to be ACCEPTING.
I have the right to be FORGIVING.
I have the right to be GRATEFUL.
I am choosing my new rights because I AM WORTH IT.”
Yes you are…
You are worth it!!!
All my best,
Right on, Howard@!
Perfect timing, wonderfully said.
Hi Howard and Warriors, fabulous reminder Howard!
Big Love to All. 🙂
Great session this week Howard
I’m gaining strength through reclaiming these basic rights.
Thanks. I needed this.
Awesome Real and True.
Hi Howard and Everyone,
I have not had internet for what seems a very long time……But I am very grateful to have it up and running better than ever before !! I have really enjoyed reading the posts that I have missed and all the lovely comments made by all of you beautiful people. Thanks so much! I am happily and gratefully choosing my new rights because….. I AM WORTH IT !
Love and Blessing to All
Oh hooray, you’re back Little Miss Sunshine! I’ve missed your ever joyful posts Debbie. All the old reliables posted last week ( cos I whinged I was missing you all 🙂 ) I thought of the ones I missed who still are not posting, and you were one of them. So happy your joyful soul is back Debbie. Hope you are nearly there! Big Love my friend.xx
Thanks so much Karen,
It is great to be back! Hope you are nearly there also. Love you my friend. Debbie
Love it, Howard!!
Well said, Howard! I feel the energy in your words. Thank you!!
I love the way you support me and us Dear Howard
Thank you Howard for the time you dedicate to us and for this appropriate blog. In my attempt to give up my right to be angry etc, I pray I do not give up my empathy to listen to others who may feel the need to share and express their emotions with me.l hope others can leave my company the happier for having done so. I believe we affect others whether we wish to or not by how we make them feel. We are bound by some kind of collective identity that in some sense we each bleed when the other is cut. We are all companions on the journey just trying to make some sense of the ups and downs of life. In the words of Mark Twain ” The two most important days in our life are the day we were born and the other when we find out why”.
Have you ever noticed when you walk towards the sun the shadow of your body is behind you. When you walk away from the sun the shadow is in front of you. If you put a plant in a dark room without any light it will perish. Parkinson Disease is like a shadow or darkness over our lives. But I believe we can transform this shadow by turning towards the Divine Light so the shadow is behind us and we eventually become absorbed by it and finally healed. One of my favourite meditations is to sit and focus on the Light flowing from the crown of my head to a point beyond my feet and allow It to fill my whole being and see myself healed. I hope this meditation is helpful to some of my Warrior friends. Love and peace. Veronica
A lovely and simple meditation, Veronica.
That’s beautiful Veronica, thank you for sharing. 🙂 xx
Very lovely and very helpful Veronica, thank you so much x
That sounds like a beautiful meditation Veronica. Thank you for sharing.
I have learned that getting angry and staying angry makes me sick.
Thank you for your insights!
Thank you Howard for great help. I am so grateful to you. I have recently started practising parkinson recipe for recovery. This month itself. I am going through lows in intervals as I am insecure about my marriage because of this disease. I know i cannot change or control other to be with me. I will practice to be happy always as my new right. Even faking a smile has better result than the opposite.
I am joyful. I will make this as my right. New right. Thank you. 🙂
Working through affirming my rights’ inventory, one right at a time, per day.
Remembering I am even worth having the right to have rights !
It’s freeing to realize we may begin to undo the years of spoken and unspoken negativities, leaving them behind.
Thank you all for your kindness. Dear Smita, my love goes out to you and with your permission I will include you in my prayers. We fear the unknown because we do not realise our own strength. Know you are stronger than fear. You will in time come to know your own greatness. Love is creative but fear is destructive. Much love to you . Go on unafraid. Peace and love.
Thank you so much Veronica. Lots of love. I am grateful. I don’t have words. Yes I was always dependent on others for happiness. My subconscious mind always said “I am not worthy”. I have started working on this pattern. My love to you and everyone here. Thank you for your kind words. 🙂