It’s a funny thing…

Energy is a funny thing. I’m not talking about physical energy, I mean emotional energy. Each engagement we have with another person costs us some emotional energy. The trade off is an exchange of energy, hopefully one that will replenish the energy that you give away. There’s more to it than this, too. There’s positive energy, and negative energy. Harm can be done to others by giving off negative vibes that those around you pick up. Negative energy repels, positive energy attracts.

Then, of course, there is the type of relationship that you have with each person with whom you interact. Confusingly, the relationship that you might have with one person is not necessarily reflective of the relationship that they have with you. Sometimes, it is complimentary, such as the relationship between employer and employee, or service user and service provider. However, sometimes it is not.

Personal relationships are complex. It’s easy to fool oneself that the relationship that you have with a person is mirrored by their relationship with you. But people get different things from the same relationship, and sometimes one person can give a lot more than they receive. It’s often easy for the recipient to accept the energy that is being given to the relationship without returning the investment. That’s not to say that they are always intentionally using the other person. Sometimes, relationships are simply imbalanced, imperfect.

However, in these situations, I believe it is up to the person who is investing the most energy into a relationship to look after themselves first. Energy imbalances can exist in many types of relationships, and is not always negative. Where the energy imbalance needs to be most carefully balanced is when love is involved. Love can be such a powerfully positive energy, but when love is given but not returned, it can turn into an extremely negative source of energy, one which sucks energy away from the source.

I have been in love. Each time, I have made the mistake of not treading carefully. Sometimes, I have been drained of energy and left to pick up the pieces. That’s how unrequited love works, after all. Other times, I have been the one who has hurt those whom I love. These situations hurt just as much, but in a different way. I’m not a pessimist, and despite my experiences, I am not a cynic. But I am cautious, and each time I get hurt, another brick goes into the wall that I build around my emotions, around my energy source, around myself. And each time I make a mistake in letting that wall get knocked down, the harder it is to pick up the pieces and move on.

I don’t think that I am a particularly emotional person. But I am passionate, and I throw myself completely into my passions. And when I’m in love, I have a tendency to lose myself within that person. So when it all falls apart, I can literally fall to pieces. I invest all of my energy into the person that I love and when that energy isn’t returned, I collapse from exhaustion. And it can take years to replenish that energy. Other times, I can withdraw into myself, to run away from emotions that I am unable to handle. This happens usually when I decide to leave a relationship. I used to experience relief when I ended a relationship, but since I have become wiser in my choice of partners, the decision to leave is often exhausting and draining, because lack of love is not usually the reason – other factors can come into play.

At the moment, I don’t have many sources of positive energy in my life. This is partly my fault, as some positive energy has to be invested in others in order to receive positive energy back. Recently, I’ve only been engaging with people in a negative way, thus depleting my own energy source and theirs, which pushes people away from me. I seem incapable of stopping myself. I don’t know what is it that has put me so much on the back foot lately. I feel that each interaction I have has to be confrontational, but anger is a negative emotion that eats energy up from the inside. Yet I don’t know how to change my behaviour.

Something needs to give. I have an idea what it is, and it’s something that I’ve been unwilling to consider up to this point. The thing is that sometimes, even when positive energy is being returned, the reasons behind that energy that can turn it into a negative source. Guilt, shame, a sense of duty, obligation. All of these things can taint even the most positive sources of energy. Perhaps it requires the recipient’s knowledge of these reasons in order to perceive them. So it follows on that maybe it’s not the reasons behind the energy, but knowledge of the reasons behind it that makes all the difference.

I have some hard choices to make. But I need to move on, I need a clean slate. I need to change the energy around me from negative to positive, and I think that this is the only way forward. I would say wish me luck, but luck has nothing to do with it. We each create our own situations in life, to some degree. I just hope that next time, I make better decisions.

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