My 'Positive Journal' assignment for today was to think of a negative experience that happened to me, where there was a glimmer of hope that kept me going.
Once again, I was completely blank! And I thought to myself, "oh no! I am hopeless!"
The way the journal described the assignment laid it out in such a way where I was supposed to have this 'negative experience' with some glimmer of 'positive' 'hope' within it.
I was first stuck on the word 'hope', as it reminds me of sugar, in a way. It feels really good when you eat it, but once it wears off you get a sugar crash and that feels terrible. So I actually have a negative connotation when it comes to 'hope'. It's like a drug, essentially, 'hope' is like 'dope'. You use it to pick yourself up when you are down, without actually practically doing something constructive.
Hope, to me, has been the act of projecting into an imaginary desired future outcome, and then feeding that projection with positive energy to make myself 'feel good' inside myself when I call it up in my mind. Inevitably, things do not turn out exactly as I had imagined (shocker: I'm not psychic!), and so I would crash into a negative experience, where I'd feel some combination of disappointment, heartbreak, victimization and disempowerment.
In fact, it is more when I do not have 'hope' where I actually tend to move myself more, to take more responsibility in a situation, and to take physical steps to work towards the desired outcome.
This is the dictionary definition of 'hope':
"A feeling of expectation and desire for a particular thing to happen."
But then there's also the 'archaic' definition, which is pretty cool and I can align more with, and that is:
"A feeling of trust."
When I am going through a 'bad experience', knowing that the 'bad experience' is simply my reaction to a situation or event, even in my lowest of lows where it seems as though all is lost, there is something inside of me, like a void, blackness, where it is as if some part of me is untouchable, unwavering, unending. It is as if there is some pocket inside of myself where I can hold myself and know that, even if everything fails, falls, gets destroyed or whatever, that in this pocket where some important aspect of me can fit, tiny like a seed, I know that that seed will be okay, and that it may be tough, but that I can re-grow from just that one preserved part of me.
And it is a glimmer of this that has supported me through even the bleakest moments. Not a positive experience, but rather it is a trust that, so long as I keep deciding for it to be so, it will be so.
And so within all of this, 'hope' to me is not about being 'positive' or projecting wants and expectations, or desires for certain outcomes, but rather the Trust in Myself that I will continue deciding that no matter what, I will be ok. The Trust in Process, that no matter what happens or how long it takes, it is done. And the Trust in Life itself, that Life will never give me more than I can handle, even if the outcome was not at all what I expected or desired.
And so, my redefinition of living 'hope' is:
The trust that enough of me will be ok no matter what the outcome.