Beyond Gratitude: By Doing Just One Thing, We Can Improve Our Lives

If we really want to live our best lives, we’ve got to go beyond gratitude. By doing just one thing, we can open up new possibilities for our lives.  Here it is: We can release angry or hurtful energy by sending positive energy to those who have wronged us. By doing this, we can free ourselves from the past and move forward. I know, it sounds kind of “out there,” but please hang in there with me for a few minutes.

Consumed by Anger and Hurt

I will admit, I’ve carried a lot of hurt and anger over the years because of what I’ve perceived as wrongs. Whether it was an ex-husband who cheated on me, a boss who claimed my work as her own, or a parent who neglected me as a child, I have not forgotten the “injustices” that I’ve experienced. No doubt, we all carry our own feelings of injustice and wrongs done to us. The problem is that when we don’t let go of these wrongs, we hold onto the negative energy that we associate with these injustices.

We Generate Energy and are Surrounded by Energy

I’m basing my assertion on the belief that we all generate energy and are connected to the energy fields around us. I’ve done some reading in this area, but I’ve also had some practical experiences in this area.  One of my experiences involved a practice called Healing Touch. The practice of Healing Touch is a therapy that helps balance our energies and promote healing. A dear friend of mine is trained as a Healing Touch therapist.

After a shooting that killed nine people in a building where I teach, my friend offered her services to our campus. When she asked me if I wanted to experience healing touch, I admit, I was a bit skeptical. But since she was a friend, I figured I’d give it a try. What surprised me is that no touching was necessary to experience the release of energy and fear that I had been holding onto. Something had happened that I could not see or explain.

Quantum Physics and Interconnectedness

One book I recently read on the interconnectedness of all things is a 2002 book by investigative journalist, Lynne McTaggart called The Field: The Quest for the Secret Force of the Universe. McTaggart argues that quantum physics can help us understand the interrelatedness of all things and the energy that connects us.

To illustrate the interconnectedness we experience regardless of distance, McTaggart used astronaut Dr. Ed Mitchell’s experience involving mental images he communicated from space to colleagues on earth simply by generating mental energy.

Think about it for a moment — have you ever thought about someone who you haven’t heard from in a while and within a short time, that person gets in touch with you?  Perhaps this occurs because our energies connect when one person extends energy to the other.

Sending Positive Energy to Those Who Hurt Us Can Help Us

In a 2011 blog written by Dr. Wayne Dyer, he claims that when we hold onto anger or hatred, it will affect us by keeping our energy fields low. He says that when he has sent love to those who have wronged him, it has raised his spiritual awareness and has helped him move out of low energy areas of his life.

In his 2013 blog, spiritual coach Paul Crouse says we “cannot overcome a negative with a negative.” Rather, he suggests the only way we can overcome negative energy is with positive energy.

Crouse argues we all have life energy (known as chi) that is affected by our thoughts. If we have negative thoughts, then our energy becomes negative.  However, by replacing negative thoughts with positive ones, we can change our energy.  Crouse offers exercises that help direct positive energy to those who have hurt us.

Note: Crouse does caution that if we’ve been a victim of violence (and I would include sexual abuse), then we may want to seek the guidance of a trained professional.

My First Opportunity to Practice Positive Energy

My significant-other blew up at me this morning. From my perspective, the anger and criticism was unjustified and came from “left field.”  I left the house and went for a four-mile jog. While clearing my head, I thought about the opportunity to let go of the negative energy I was feeling.

I stopped at one of my favorite oak trees. I placed my hands on the trunk of the tree and visualized sending my significant-other love and healing. As I focused on sending positive thoughts, the negativity I had felt in my body was lifted.

I will admit that just because I feel free of anger right now, I am still not ready to forget some unkind words that were hurled in my direction. I simply feel at peace. When my significant-other is ready, we’ll likely move forward.

A New Discipline

I intend to practice focusing on positive energy this year. When people have done things I perceive as hurtful, I will attempt to send them positive, loving, energy. I’ll let you know how this goes over the next few months.


I am an associate professor of communication in Southern Oregon. I'm also an ancient spirit who has learned how to create positive changes in my own life and use unexpected changes to become more of the person I believe I am meant to be. My vision is to help empower others by sharing how to dream big and develop measurable action steps to achieve those dreams.

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