The Negonavirus

Class: Negativity Infection

Treatment: Hopium, mindfulness, meditation, satisfaction, authenticity

Prognosis: dependent on the length of exposure, degree of systemic infiltration, amount of individual resistance and content of support arsenal. All victims of Negonavirus have the right and the desire for treatment but many are unaware they even carry the infection. Children under age 8 are entirely naturally immune but become increasingly susceptible to infection as they mature and by age 17 often are fully compromised by Negonavirus effects.

Symptoms: vary dependent upon individual and situational characteristics. May include but are not limited to behaviours of manipulation and control, gaslighting, condescension, arrogance, chronic victimhood, passive aggression, outright aggression, impulsivity, substance abuse, self harm, emotional abuse, and many other toxic patterns of interaction. Clusters of symptoms can sometimes be given a name for ease of diagnosis, such as narcissist, anti-social personality, borderline personality, or Karen, but even individual symptoms are indicative of mild infection and should receive treatment.

Diagnosis: based on behaviours of sufferers but also the impact of those behaviours on those around the victim of Negonavirus. It is invisible to the naked eye but can be felt by the mood in a room when a sufferer enters, and from tone and subtext in communication. Non verbal signs are often present.

Innoculation: infection can be prevented using the treatment methodology, but also through early intervention with children so they develop immunity prior to adulthood.

Highly contagious and can be passed through both direct personal contact and indirect interactions such as emails, texts, and one sided communication such as blogs. It is energy-born thus all human interactions potentially can facilitate transmission.

Stay tuned for further expansion on the signs, symptoms, therapeutic interventions and other details surrounding the Negonavirus pandemic which has gripped the world for more than 40 years.

No Explanation Required

Stop justifying boundaries!

Sorry, I am washing my hair so can’t talk to you.

Our instinct when we say no, when we assert a boundary, is to give our reasons. This drive is so deeply ingrained that we will lie when we say no just to avoid judgement of our real reason for refusing something or someone. We feel the need to provide an excuse, information meant to ease their pain.

Rarely does it do that.

But worse, information is power. Power is control. Control is an opportunity for imbalance through judgement, exploitation and manipulation.

Our healthy boundaries are valid for us. And when we say no, our reasons are our own. To tell them to others is to hand them power over our boundary and invite them to debate our internal limits.

Synergy provides no explanation when she denies us what we think we want. She does not justify, argue or defend. She offers what she can, and it is not our place to question her. Since we know she won’t answer, we may try to fathom her reasons but we don’t attempt to change her mind.

Unlike our fellow humans.

We regularly engage in campaigns to get our way. Overt intimidation, covert manipulation, wheedling, cajoling, and bribing are all efforts to turn a no to a yes. And the more information we are armed with, the more effective our battle strategies. Admittedly it is satisfying to get our way and not taking no for an answer does have its place.

So long as that place does not steamroll the rights of another and violate their fair and reasonable boundaries. A no may feel unfair and unreasonable to us, and at times it is, given that inappropriate and unhealthy boundaries also involve the word no! Someone exploiting you is going to emphatically tell YOU no when you tell them to stop violating you!

If you are moving toward sincere joy and satisfaction, then examining a no with curiosity and openness should reveal Synergy’s reasons for the obstacle. Asking questions is part of the journey, as is accepting the answers.

When you assert a boundary and say no, you do not need to volunteer your rationale. You do not need to give the other person control of your boundary. Your sense of security is not up for debate.

But it is open to investigation, fair game for fair and appropriate action. Respectful curiosity is what Synergy wants from all of us, including pointing it at our own emotional mind. Do YOU know why you are saying no? Do you understand what aspect of the situation makes you uncomfortable thus prompting a rejection? Have you given intentionality to your boundary or is it just a knee jerk response from habit or training?

When someone probes your boundaries with gentle analysis, it can feel frightening and possibly invasive, which triggers a greater sense of discomfort. But if we don’t understand why we say no when we say no we are not only doing a possible disservice to ourselves, but perhaps losing the chance to serve the needs of others, a core imperative in our design.

There are times to explain yourself, when an opportunity for service is present and both you and the other party have sincere needs and authentic reasons for your positions. In those moments, intimacy can grow as you offer the vulnerability of an explanation, giving the power of information to the other party.

Sharing your reasons is an act of intimacy. Of surrender. It generates a Moment of connection. That is why we feel the need to explain ourselves. But to jump the gun and offer unsolicited information is to force intimacy. Allowing a give and take fosters more depth of connection. If you do all the giving and don’t allow reciprocal giving you have missed a moment. And if there are unhealthy motives, allowing give and take to flow naturally will shine the light on them.

Try it on WWF! The Scammy Sammys volunteer their life story – invariably a poor widowed father who doesn’t get on the game often so wants to meet on Google Hangouts. This disclosure of information is intended to generate a sense of reciprocity and intimacy yet comes uninvited! When you do not offer a similar level of disclosure, when you say no and enforce a healthy boundary, you will come under attack!

Some people will simply leave you alone when you say no, blocking you out of their life with no explanation once they realize you have clear boundaries. These are Scammy Sammys who like easy prey.

Others will attempt to shame you and make you question your boundaries. These Scammy Sammys enjoy the negativity where a no triggers contempt.

While yet others will try to find ways to circumnavigate your boundaries, testing your defenses from various angles until they find a weak spot in your armour. To them no means convince you, and they delight in a challenge. They use an arsenal of strategies to reach their goal. Your weak spots will be either insincere or unhealthy defenses. In your analysis of your boundaries you will recognize some areas needing work and reinforcement. Proactive reflection will keep you safer by preventing intrusions.

Fielding the constant attacks of these types gets exhausting and is the most dangerous to you core self. Every hit weakens your walls and if enough volleys hit home you eventually crumble and fall victim to a violation.

Boundaries form the walls protecting our wise mind and helping to keep our monsters subdued. Boundary violations trigger Moodasaurus and Logiticus to patrol our perimeter and unhealthy boundaries confuse those two lovely beasts as well as the targets of their defenses.

We do not need to justify our boundaries to others…so long as we have justified them to ourselves.

Contempt, Compassion, and Empathy

Empathy really is a buzz word nowadays. It’s held up by many as the standard of excellence in emotional functioning and the antidote to contempt. Empathy is seen as a higher level of awareness and the solution to social ills. But there is a problem with this ideal.

Empathy is feeling someone else’s emotions as if they are your own. Although on the surface this would seem a noble and compassionate thing, especially when held up in contrast of contempt which is judgement of someone else’s emotions, to feel someone’s emotions is…well…immature, selfish and in fact a form of contempt!

This is not to say understanding someone’s feelings is inappropriate, not in the least. That is the root of compassion, which is a healthy respect for and awareness of the emotions of others.

But in its truest form, empathy is an example of someone with poor boundaries who is unable to distinguish between themselves and others thus feels a strong need to fix the problems for others in order to find peace themselves. Many empaths talk of being overwhelmed and taken advantage of, which is a way of blaming others for their failure to protect themselves by establishing healthy boundaries. To act to change someone else’s circumstances can often be a form of contempt because the message is you know better then they, the victims, do.

Contempt and callous disregard for the feelings of others is an easy target to disparage and the narcissist easy to blame for society’s ills. The person exhibiting contempt is demonstrating rigid boundaries with complete distinction between themselves and others, which is viewed as toxic and dysfunctional. True, there is an imbalance present in this way of coping and to reach authenticity and enlightenment a shift needs to happen away from a focus on the judgemental coping mechanisms into wise and compassionate processes. Yet empathy is not the answer either.

The empath is also often toxic and dysfunctional yet in a way deemed acceptable to society because the appearance of helpfulness and caring, yet the drive is just as internally motivated as the actions of the narcissist. There is an imbalance present here, too, and a shift away from the emotional coping mechanisms into wise and compassionate processes needs to happen.

Compassion does not mean your are suffering with the people you feel compassionate towards. They are not you and you are not them, their emotions are not yours to feel. But compassion does elicit discomfort when imbalance, injustice, or negativity is witnessed. Compassion involves the desire to see balance restored, in whatever form the victim might feel it needs to take. As soon as you decide what form restitution or balance must take, you are no longer being compassionate, you are being contemptuous. To demand anything on anyone’s behalf except your very own, is to show contempt of that person’s or groups’ ability to determine their own needs. And unless they asked for your help, you disempower them by taking up their cause unless you yourself are directly affected by the imbalance.

Don’t mistake activism for compassion and empathy for support. Those without voices do need to be heard, but unless you are one of the voiceless, your sounds will drown out the meaning of their silence. Speaking from a place of experience is the only way to drive change, and listening from a place of compassion if you are not the victim, is the only way to support change.

Emotional Epilepsy

Epilepsy is a diagnosable condition with measurable symptoms, predictable triggers, and consistent patterns of behaviour. The condition arises from a systemic imbalance. Someone experiencing seizures loses control of themselves and can be dangerous to themselves and others. Treatments are available for many symptoms but the afflicted individual must choose to seek diagnostics, medical intervention, and support.

Emotional dysfunctions are diagnosable conditions with measurable symptoms, predictable triggers, and consistent patterns of behaviour. The condition arises from a systemic imbalance. Someone experiencing an emotional dysfunctional episode, an emotional seizure, loses control of themselves and can be dangerous to themselves and others. Treatments are available for many symptoms but the afflicted must choose to seek diagnostics, medical intervention, and support.

During a seizure, the person with epilepsy may involuntarily strike out at their surroundings, may become blind to dangers, may not be able to consciously safeguard themselves or others. If they were to injure a loved one during an uncontrolled seizure they would likely feel intense guilt and shame at the damage they did. Their loved one would not blame them for the behaviours whilst out of control of their body, yet would hold them accountable for seeking treatment, for creating effective coping strategies, for learning how to manage their outbursts in order to make the relationship safer for both of them. No expectations, only boundaries. If epilepsy goes unmanaged, the support person would be in constant risk.

During an emotional seizure, the person with emotional dysregulation may involuntarily strike out at their surroundings, may become blind to dangers, may not be able to consciously safeguard themselves or others. If they were to injure a loved one during an uncontrolled episode they would likely feel intense guilt and shame at the damage they did.

But that’s where the similarity tends to end, which is why mental illness so often grows, and passes on to another generation, accumulating shame, blame, and guilt with each new seizure.

Mental illness is painful for all who endure it as sufferers, victims, and witnesses. Just like epilepsy. But unlike epilepsy, it gets mistaken for a choice, judged as a lifestyle, and dismissed as unworthy of compassion or empathy. Yet like epilepsy, compassion, empathy and support constitute part of the treatment and are central to managing symptoms.

To support someone through epileptic seizures, you cannot pick and choose which symptoms are epileptic and which are not. You accept the whole and forgive what happens during a seizure, if you choose to interact with the person who is potentially unsafe for you because of their illness. To do otherwise is to judge and that puts imbalance between you. Better to keep boundaries between, not scales, and accept completely or let it be. Only you know if the relationship is worth the risk to your safety. No outsider can tell you that although they may try.

To support someone through emotional seizures, you cannot pick and choose which symptoms are choices and which are illness. You accept the whole and forgive what happens during a seizure, if you choose to interact with the person who is potentially unsafe for you because of their illness. To do otherwise is to judge and that puts imbalance between you. Better to keep boundaries between you, not scales, and accept completely or let it be. Only you will know if the relationship is worth the risk to your safety. No outsider can tell you although they might try.

Understanding epilepsy does not mean excusing the dangers of it or absolving people of the responsibility to manage it. But an informed perspective allows preparation for making a choice when a Moment of decision – stay or go – presents itself. Understanding is the foundation for compassion. Knowledge dispels fear and eases trauma. The wise mind guides decisions once the emotional and judgemental brains quiet down.

Understanding emotional dysfunctions does not mean excusing the dangers or absolving people of the responsibility to manage it. But an informed perspective allows preparation for making a choice when a Moment of decision- stay or go – presents itself. Understanding is the foundation for compassion. Knowledge dispels fear and eases trauma. The wise mind guides decisions once the emotional and judgemental brains quiet down.

Emotional abuse is not ok. But it is understandable. It has patterns, predictable triggers, and treatable behaviours. Hope for stability is what keeps people in abusive situations and hope is a precious, powerful force. To judge either party for having hope is to create greater imbalance while acceptance adds more hope and a sense of a safety net.

Almost in the Moment

Living in the moment is what we were designed to do but the short circuit in our brain coupled with our elemental personality can generate complications! Can make moments that are out of alignment with purpose but still based on the sensation of being in the Now.

Living in the moment with intentionality is the key to finding balance, stability, serenity and joy. Living in the moment but following impulses and urges without understanding where they originated – the judgemental mind or the feeling mind or the wise mind – creates dysfunction and dissatisfaction.

Our elemental personality type, with the need to either drop down an energy level or rise up in energy, feeds our feelings. When not satisfied, we get urges to interact with other people, to use them to meet our needs. That is absolutely fine, it is how we were designed to be, how we live in a society. If we didn’t have needs to be met, we wouldn’t be part of a community in the first place! We would live solitary, isolated lives.

For every person who needs to give away, there is a person who needs to receive. Soulmates who can be fulfilled while fulfilling because just like chemical bonds, pairings meet the objective of completing the unstable shell and bringing satisfaction. Equal and opposite forces bring balance, stability and lasting bonds.

The closer we feel we are to satisfaction, the greater the desire to experience it. The more intense the drive for fulfillment. The more volatile the response to the opportunity to jump up an energy level, or jump down. Because it’s right there, peace and serenity, just within reach, just a Moment away…thus in fact those whose behaviour seems to be the least peaceful are in fact the most ready to take that leap and find stability. But that very volatility gets in the way of making the right leap in the Moment, when fears and doubts cause the opposite to stability.

Need creates vulnerability. Vulnerability generates fear. Fear foments distrust. Distrust breeds resistance. Resistance crucifies Moments.

Trusting ourselves, Synergy, and others is critical to truly surrendering, to living intentionally in the Moment, and to finding satisfaction in personal relationships.

Spiteful Pleasure?

We’re told to feel guilt and shame for the thoughts in our head. We self-chastise for offenses we didn’t commit, merely imagined. But…really…it’s NOT the thought that counts.

Thoughts and feelings are mere shadows in the Mattersphere, somewhat perceptible but not able to take action on their own. You are your actions, not your thoughts, in the material world. Even in the Eternal world, you are not your thoughts because thoughts are data fragments floating around in our local hard drive brain, they were not supposed to take up residence! They will not follow us in the present moment or in death.

Ever taken spiteful malicious pleasure in someone else’s misfortune and then felt awful afterward? Even though you had nothing to do with their circumstances and did not bring about their pain, did you feel guilt and criticize yourself for not being a good person?

Why?

What did you DO to deserve your self-condemnation?

You had a thought.

That thought was satisfying to you. Remove judgement from it, because judgement is a construct better left to Eternity. The thought was not malicious or spiteful. It was simply a thought, and your satisfaction in it simply satisfaction. Accept both without guilt or shame.

Synergy created us to be curious and hopeful and to seek satisfaction. Feelings are supposed to be sensory responses to the social environment, not tied to our internal environment. Thoughts are meant to pre-process Datter, and then disappear, not get stuck in loops of thought – feeling – thought – feeling.

The short circuit of our self-awareness makes us judge ourselves about the sources of satisfaction and pleasure, whether a thought or an act, and then society perpetuates that judgement. Notice children have no shame or guilt? If you learn to live in the Moment and accept your thoughts as simply information triggered by the events and circumstances around you, and you let go of contempt and criticism of those thoughts, and even of past behaviours. Did you hurt someone? Let it go but don’t do it in another Moment. Did someone hurt you? Let it go but keep safe boundaries in another Moment.

When you occupy the Now, there is no wrong or right. There is acceptance, curiosity, hope, joy, growth and gratitude. No matter whether the Moment includes pain and strife or ease and comfort, acceptance and satisfaction can be found. Every one of us is trying to survive the best we can in each moment, and each moment is what it needs to be.

Pain and Suffering

Pain is part of the price of admission for living, for growing character and resilience. Suffering is voluntary and arises from resistance to the reality that people will disappoint your expectations, goals will fail to fulfill you, and you will let yourself down when you turn out not to be who you believed you were.

No expectations, only boundaries. Even for your own mind and body. Surrender your self-expectations, too, allowing instead discovery of your purpose. That is how to avoid suffering.

Physical and emotional pain only interfere with life if we allow them to. We hear stories about mind over matter and admire feats of courage where someone overcomes great discomfort in moments of crisis. Are those people different? Do they have a gift?

No, they were present in the Moment and received strength and tools to escape the situation using their own existing core emotional and physical structure. They were not distracted by doubts or fears of not being good enough or making mistakes.

Pain arises from imbalance. Physical imbalance comes from structural or chemical deviations from optimum. One person’s source of pain is not the same as another’s, a debilitating deficit for me is not a source of dysfunction for you. Addressing them requires the use of all the escape room tools and resources available in your situation. The process of healing the imbalance must start from inside yourself, from identifying what it feels like. Physical suffering sometimes comes from the uncertainty and fear of not being able to articulate the nature, quality and parameters of the pain, not necessarily the dysfunction itself.

Emotional imbalance comes from social and relationship deviations from optimum. One person’s source of emotional pain is not the same as another’s, a debilitating toxicity for me may not be a source of dysfunction for you. The process of healing the imbalance must start from inside yourself, from identifying what it feels like. Emotional suffering sometimes comes from the uncertainty and fear of not being able to articulate the nature, quality and parameters of the pain, not necessarily the dysfunction itself.

Each of us is individual and unique. Sometimes we suffer because we are told we should, because another person experienced pain in a similar situation. Pain is subjective, it is in the mind, and can be used for growth.

All pain has purpose. No suffering does. Giving meaning and reason to pain alleviates suffering. Spending a Moment to investigate the pain with curiosity and acceptance will reveal to you the purpose. Embrace the pain, because at the moment it is your reality and all that is, is as it must be.

And, if you have been suffering…forgive yourself. That moment is over and a new one just beginning.

Neutrality verses Stability

The Periodic Table of the Elements organizes all the types of atoms based on physical and chemical properties. Atoms behave in a predictable consistent manner in set conditions.

So too do most humans. Although we may subconsciously blind ourselves to the predictable patterns, they are there. Accepting they exist is the first step toward becoming curious about how to interact safely with all the elemental personality types and finding joy and satisfaction in safe interactions no matter how volatile the personalities involved. Every person we meet is a gift from Synergy and if we open it with grateful curiosity we will obtain the hidden treasure found within the most challenging of relationships.

We are what we are.

But we can become more through our interactions just like the elements become more through forming bonds with other elements.

All atoms on their own are electrically neutral. There is balance between the core nucleus of positively charged protons and the orbiting clouds of negatively charged electrons. If left isolated, no atom is in and of itself volatile. They only become reactive in the presence of other atoms, whether their same type or a different kind entirely.

Humans are like that too. Leave us alone, without outside influence, and we don’t react if there’s nothing to react to! We are neutral, balanced in our positives and negatives. That person, who exists independent of humanity, is our Eternal self, the best and most wonderful version of our core structure. Every single one of us is beautifully neutral and balanced on our own.

But humans, like atoms, do not exist in an empty vacuum. We must interact from the moment of birth until we either die or isolate ourselves in a safe space. Those interactions are driven by our core structure and the structure of the people we associate with.

In the presence of other atoms, elements may become reactive dependant on the core structures involved. The objective in chemical reactions is not electrical neutrality, but rather structural stability. This is achieved by the movement of negatively charged electrons because positive charges cannot be changed. So atoms need to either give negativity away, or receive negativity, to get satisfied. Some are more volatile than others in their effort to attain chemical stability.

Humans are like that too. We feel the drive to either generate negativity in others which, be honest, can be very satisfying in the moment, or we seek to alleviate negativity which is also satisfying. Some people are more volatile than others in their effort to attain emotional stability.

There are 18 families of core structures on the Periodic Table but 8 are the fundamental ones most involved in our lives. Only one of those groups is both chemically and electrically stable, the rest have varying degrees of reactivity.

Understanding human reactivity as the quest for emotional stability while respecting the underlying balanced core structure allows the formation of lasting, productive, stable bonds.

Macrocosm reflects microcosm…we are what we are composed of.

Hopeful Assumptions

We are constantly forced to make assumptions. We are in frequent interactions with others but don’t always receive all the information we need to understand their behaviour by which to choose an appropriate and effective response.

Every single one of us makes judgements, has a running commentary in the back of our minds, forming opinions about those influencing our lives at the moment. This is completely natural and necessary as a safety mechanism to prep us to respond to the moment. To cue us for action based on the circumstances since obviously our behaviour amongst hostile individuals will be drastically different than when surrounded by unknowns or by family.

And there’s where problems can arise.

No expectations, only boundaries. Don’t trust anyone so accept that they have the potential to hurt you. But hope for the best and love them anyway.

We assume familiar people are safe, unfamiliar people may not be, and hostile people are dangerous.

When it comes to emotional wounds, those closest to us have the greatest power to hurt us and our assumption of safety puts both sides in a position of expected behaviour which can set them up for failure. Especially if there is emotional dysfunction present making even common courtesy fly out the window in moments of distress.

No adult is responsible for another adult’s well being; as much as we’d all like to assume others will not intentionally hurt us we must accept that they will, given the right set of circumstances. Even the best of us has a breaking point. And no matter how well you think you know someone, no matter how close you think you are to them, you will likely never see how close they are to shattering.

We must have no expectations that anyone will be able to protect us from their sharp edges and broken pieces. But to be a part of society or an organization or a family, we must love them anyway and make ourselves safely vulnerable to them with our boundaries in place. Our trust in them gives them hope that they are trustworthy, a priceless gift which Synergy gives to us every day. Our boundaries give us hope and responsibility for our own safety.

Trust means having no expectations, only boundaries. A boundary is an escape plan if things go wrong. It is not an expectation of behaviour, it is a planned, intentional response to misbehaviour. ‘If she yells at me one more time, I am walking out the door.’ A boundary does not need to be announced, approved, or accepted by others, but advising the perpetrator of their violation and the consequence can be a part of a boundary before acting on the escape plan.

Forwarning is not recommended for emotional abusers because boundaries feel like control to them – boundaries are not control of an abuser, they are control of the victim and since abuse is frequently about control, to assert a boundary shifts control from abuser to abused thus does truly represent a loss of control, control they never should have taken. To notify them they are losing control can trigger worse behaviour.

Assume the worst in any situation, prepare your mind for the worst, accept that the worst might happen, and figure out exactly how trusting this person might harm you. No risk? Great. High risk? Then what are you willing to gamble? Every action you take, if purposeful and deliberate, will have minimal risk with maximum satisfaction, if you surrender to the reality that you alone – with Synergy’s support and guidance – are obligated to take care of yourself. You cannot trust anyone to have your back, but you can hope they do. Cover your back as much as you can, before you give them the gift of exposing it to them. Vulnerability is a treasure that, when shared, increases immeasurably.

Hopeful assumptions mean you respond to the best scenario by allowing situations to play out naturally, only acting if you must. Love them anyway, unless they actually DO trigger the boundary but since you prepared yourself for that you were not surprised.

And if the outcome IS the best, then you get to be pleasantly surprised that your trust and hope were rewarded. Either way, the outcome was meant to be.