The C Word, Respect, Toxic Positivity And Shame

The C Word, Shame, respect and Toxicity

 In Entrepreneur, Fear, Mindset, Podcast, Positivity

The C Word, Shame, respect and Toxicity

  The C word is taking over every feed imaginable still, for obvious reasons!   It’s bringing out the best in some people, the worst in others.  There have definitely been a few other ‘side effects’ in society (for positive and negative) and in the business world for sure.   I very much don’t want to contribute to a problem so i’ll talk to you about how i’m handling it and my take on it and from next week i’ll be re-releasing some key episodes that I know are going to help and remind you of all the tools you already have at your disposal…without turning everything into a C word frenzy that I believe is perpetuating the problem.     Now is a time to apply and use what you already know!  Especially when trying to juggle it with partners and kids around too!   People are looking for NEW solutions everywhere and are forgetting all the tools and resources they already have.     This is certainly not about denying what’s going on in any way because it’s very real and very devastating for a lot of people.     I choose to look at things a certain way and you may look at them another but I wanted to offer up a potentially different perspective.   I was talking to my husband about why I feel so strongly about what I’m going to talk you through and have been racking my brains thinking ‘am I completely missing something here, am I wrong in what I believe right now’ and I came to the conclusion that a huge amount of how I feel is because i’ve been there, done it and got the t-shirt on losing everything before.     6 years ago when we lost our business, our home, our relationship was tested to the limit, we had to move in with my mother in law and had absolutely no money so we did nothing but stay indoors and worry and panic and get a bit depressed.     BUT, It’s what sent me on the path to here with the dream house, the dream dog, the businesses and qualifications that I have where I get to help people think differently, overcome their unconscious programming and not be ruled by their emotions.     In essence everything is SO much better now than it ever would have been had it not happened, and I trust that that will happen again.     I know what mistakes I made last time, what helped and what didn’t.     I lived it and it was very painful and I’m very grateful for it.  I’m wired for resilience. I’m wired to accept the bad and look for the good in it.     So as much as there has been a big financial loss so far and we have NO idea how all this is going to go…i’m actually totally ok with it.     The more special content that gets created, specifically around the worry or anxiety element of what’s going on, the more I believe people WILL worry and feel anxious because it’s repeating the message that the majority ARE worrying and anxious. The more people see these messages the more the underlying tone is that they SHOULD feel that way.     As humans we have a need to ‘fit in’.  Our basic needs are being challenged right now.  Our need for safety is being hugely challenged, but one up from that is the need for belonging, we’re looking to be the same as others.  To feel part of a community right now.     When you look at Maslow’s hierarchy of needs you can see why this is having such a profound effect on everyone.     First it’s our basic needs such as food, water, shelter…toilet roll has very obviously become one of our core basic needs but you can see where the selfish stockpiling is coming from!    Next on the hierarchy is safety. Personal, employment, health. Massively challenged right now in every way.   Then we have love and belonging.  Friends, family and a sense of connection.  So when we’re self isolating it’s no wonder people are seeking this online.   Then you have esteem.  Feeling respected, your status in the world and a sense of accomplishment.  You can see this in a lot of business owners right now.     Worrying about their business ‘failing’ OR going way above and beyond to do extra for their audiences.   And at the top you have self actualisation and the desire to be the best person you can be, morality is a big piece of this.  So it’s no wonder people are getting so judgy and opinionated.   On all levels our core basic needs are being threatened and tested.   We’re all being ruled by our egos right now…big time!   In these crazy times a little more compassion and a little less judgement will go a long way.     I don’t want to make anyone ‘wrong’ and that’s not my intention at all, I appreciate we all have different takes and opinions and beliefs around this, this is just my take on things, you will have your own.   Online the hysteria is being added to on a continual basis.  There’s added pressure on business owners in SO many ways.   There’s the revenue for starters!   There’s potential relationship strains and kids running round feet.    There’s the VERY loud opinions, judgements and SHOULDS all over the show.   There’s the feeling that you need to ‘follow suit’ and if they’re doing X, Y and Z then you should be too.   There’s a lot of very well meaning business owners showing up for their audiences for free in a VERY big way….which is lovely, and comes from a really good place.     And some of it is genuinely helpful, absolutely spot on for what people genuinely need right now and helps them KEEP focus and keep their eyes on their goals for once we’re out the other side of this, because we will, the rest is just extra noise and potentially causing a bit of a problem.     What do I mean by that?  It’s perpetuating the anxiety, in many cases creating it when it may not have been there before.     It’s creating lots of extra ‘things to do’ in a time where there could be some real focus and opportunity if you choose to look at it that way.   It’s causing people to keep looking for the next free thing that they ‘need’ right now.  It’s freebie shiny object syndrome on steroids.   So there’s a fine line and for me some of it is really adding to the problem in many ways.  I absolutely see the merit in it all don’t get me wrong, like I said, it’s coming from a good place mostly.     But when everyone else is following suit it’s becoming overwhelming for people to consume and also feel like they need to create to keep up.     It’s also keeping the focus on what’s going on, rather than just carrying on as best we can, focusing on what we CAN do rather than what we can’t and taking advantage of the time to do all the things we convince ourselves we don’t have time for.   So what i’m saying is, take a step back and consider what you REALLY need right now vs feeling like you need EVERYTHING on offer right now purely because it’s been linked in the messaging to Coronavirus somehow, and staying off the endless scroll looking for it.     I bet if you have a look back you already have a tonne of things that you’ve already bought and paid for that you can finally use that perhaps wasn’t a priority before, even if it’s just a case of asking someone else to brainstorm with you.  The answers are already out there for you.   The biggest thing that I see as a problem is all the shaming that’s going on.   People are shaming people for selling, they’re shaming people for not selling.     They’re shaming people for being negative and now for being positive!  The trolls are out in force and they’re ANGRY!   STOP THE INTERNET I WANT TO GET OFF!   What’s with all the judgement?!     I get that people are angry and scared and there’s some very real, REAL stuff going on right now but we have not lost all our faculties and ability to be good humans.    The phrase ‘toxic positivity’ is being bandied around a fair amount that i’ve seen.  And i’ve been limiting my social media intake big time because that’s what i’m choosing to do at this time.  I’m loving Instagram so head over there and follow me @imfranexcell and come play. Facey B i’m taking some time off.   I know it helps me keep a level head to only read reputable sources to make sure I’m informed and I choose to stay out of the madness, hysteria and away from people jumping on various bandwagons.   People are addicted to it. I wholeheartedly understand that, but it is also a choice.   When it comes to the posts i’m seeing it’s now veering towards the ‘It’s ok however you’re feeling you don’t have to be positive if you don’t feel it, it’s ok to feel stressed and anxious and down if that’s what you feel’   While I do completely understand the sentiment but I don’t completely agree, for good reason.    Physiologically it is NOT good to stay in fear.  In fight or flight mode with cortisol and adrenaline running through your system lowering your immune system and impeding your ability to think clearly.     Of COURSE you’re going to be feeling negative emotions at times right now, we all are and that IS ok.  Just please don’t dwell there for longer than you need to.     Moments of stress, tears and wobbles are one thing, having it validated to you by people that you trust that it’s ok to LIVE there, and essentially unconsciously being given ‘permission’ to live there right now is not going to help.   On top of the physiological effects it’s also going to allow you to make excuses to yourself to stay there.   You’re also creating new neural pathways in your brain for anxiety and fear to become the path of least resistance.  You’re creating new habitual ways of thinking.   You’re also essentially training your brain to show you MORE of it.     I’ve talked to you about the reticular activating system before, it’s your brain’s spam filter.  When you stay in fear, anxiety and worry you’re essentially training it to show you and filter out all the evidence that that’s right.     So when you see more and more of it and unconsciously ignore any positives, that fear and anxiety is inevitably going to grow and get worse.   We’re all looking to validate our own stories and opinions all the time.  It’s how we tick. We want people to tell us it’s ok to be however we are and feel whatever we feel.     While that’s true, everyone is perfect as they are….what’s NOT true is that it’s healthy to stay in fear and anxiety.  What’s NOT true is it’s ok for people to be in a state they don’t actually want to be in.   I’ve talked before about how negative emotions can be helpful and are not to be ignored, suppressed or paid attention to.  They ARE incredibly helpful and a big part in being positive.   It’s not about victim shaming but there is something to be said for making sure you’re not encouraging people to stay in that place.    It’s a fine line and we can have so many secondary gains from being in a negative headspace so we don’t need to make it even easier for people to stay there.     For me it’s just about having a really good, solid self awareness and curiosity.     Misery also loves company so if you’re too far the other way then it’s almost as if the negativity starts being encouraged.     Positivity isn’t about FALSE positivity…FAKING it.     It’s about increasing your resilience, it’s about faith that even if it’s a bit rubbish now that it WILL be ok.     It’s being able to bounce back quickly and think on your feet, it’s behavioural flexibility.     It’s emotional intelligence and being able to regulate your emotions and not be consumed by them.   It’s about asking for help when you feel you can’t do it alone.   It is NOT about pretending things aren’t happening, or faking positivity when you don’t feel it.     It’s about CHOOSING to look for any potential positives and understanding that you do have that choice.   It’s about being able to be calm and level headed in chaos, even if you have plenty to be concerned about.   It’s being able to zoom out from your emotions or a situation and look at it rationally.     It’s acceptance of and surrender to what you can’t control.     It’s about being able to see the positive IN the negative.  Not DENYING it!   Denying negative emotions makes them GROW.     So feel what you need to feel, wobble, rant, cry…but USE the tools to change your state when you want to or know you need to.     You WILL feel the full spectrum of emotions during such uncertainty.  Our brains are in overdrive, they crave safety and certainty and we can’t give that right now.    It’s about not making you or your emotions wrong OR forcing it.   We’ve been Catapulted out of our habitual thinking, which I actually think is going to be AMAZING for us all in the long run, individually and globally!  No more doing things just because it’s the way they’ve always been done.     So let’s not start being negative about positivity!    People are all going to handle this how they feel they need to so even if you think something judgemental and mean….just think before you share it!   You don’t have to take MY opinion either, but you’re listening to my podcast so I thought i’d share it ha!   I’m all about trying to help people think differently and get out of their stories and i’m not going to stop doing that now.   I’m also not going to be offering special Coronavirus content (other than this) or offers.  I’m not saying there is anything ‘wrong’ with that, it’s just not what I’M going to do right now.     The content and offers I would put out for or during Coronavirus is EXACTLY the same as I would for any other issue around mindset and productivity.  (Bet you’re all really figuring out right now why I do both together ha! Inextricably linked!)     I want you guys to apply it ALL the time, not just now.  This is the PERFECT time to put into practice what i’ve been teaching for years!   So I cultivated around 18 previous episodes that can and WILL help right now.     All around boundaries with family at home, how to maintain focus, how to change your state, the power of habits and routine, why managing your energy is important, letting go of ‘shoulds’, remembering to do the basics and use the resources you’ve already got, listening to your gut, not getting caught in worry loops, how to stop overthinking, self discipline, how to overcome your stories, secondary gains, taking responsibility, why your thoughts are so important, perspective, the power of language, how not to fear haters….there’s TONNES!    Hopefully you can see how it’s all relevant right now.   It’s all already there for you to binge in around 10-15 minutes each!   You can find them over on my insta stories highlights and on my facebook page and my personal facebook profile.    Over the next few weeks i’m going to be re-releasing some of them with a little snippet at the beginning for how you can apply it and make it relevant for right now but it’s important to me that you learn these tools for use WHENEVER you need them.    One of the things I’m doing right now, in my way, on my terms, is to really limit my social media.     One so I don’t have to see any scare mongering or false facts and two to stay clear of any comparison.    I’m taking advantage of the gift of this extra time.    I’m listening to the government guidelines and staying at home, staying sane and sensible.    I’m revisiting courses I didn’t complete.   I’m reading SO much.     I’m dancing round the kitchen.     I’ve been making things in the kitchen with Tobyn.     I’ve been singing Disney and show tunes at the top of my lungs.     I’ve been standing outside in the sunshine and now I’m up and about after my surgery I will be taking Milo for walks.     I’ve bought a flower press and we’re going foraging for plants and flowers and we’re going to put them up on the wall.     I’m finding I’m going back to lots of things I loved doing as a kid.   We’re going to do all the DIY and clearing that we ‘never have time for’.   I’ve been on zoom calls and facetime with clients, friends and loved ones.   I’ve been playing some of my favourite silly games like Dobble.     I’ve been cuddling Milo.   I’ve been SO grateful for our position and that we still have our health, as do my loved ones.   I’ve been angry at people continuing to not take it seriously and putting others in danger, I’ve been angry at the selfish behaviour that’s been displayed.   I’ve been joyful at all the good news I fill my instagram feed with (if you want to see some follow me @imfranexcell)   I’ve been using all the tools in my toolkit, meditation, mindfulness, NLP, Anchors, Journaling etc.   I’ve had moments of realisation about the amount of money I’ve lost, then I’ve put things into perspective and got back to gratitude.   I’ve accepted that things I was SO excited about are now not happening.   I’ve accepted that what I thought 2020 was going to look like isn’t going to turn out that way and stayed open to it bringing positive change somehow.     I don’t need to know what that looks like just yet, I’m just open to it.   I’ve surrendered.  I’m accepting of what I am and am not in control of in this situation and I’m grounded in doing what I need to do for me, regardless of what other people are doing.   I’m still offering all my same services including 1:1, my mastermind, power hours and my SOS service.  If you want more information just DM me on @imfranexcell or drop me an email on   I’m not putting any additional pressure on myself, or allowing anyone else to put pressure on me.   I’m being there for my clients who will and do feel all the feels but know they don’t want to stay there and are using all their resources to make sure they are where they want to be.   I’ve been helping people pivot, think differently, reframe.  The whole 9 yards.   I’ve let go of expectation.   I’m choosing to look for the good.   Yes there are a huge amount of negatives about what’s happening for a lot of people.     BUT, there is potential for SO much good.     As I mentioned, we’ve ALL been catapulted out of habitual thinking.  I can only see this as a good thing.     We’re all getting to use parts of our brains that have been running on autopilot for however long.     We’re being forced to slow down (a good thing for me as a perpetual ‘achiever’ with a superwoman complex)     We’ve been given a gift of time to ‘catch up’ with ourselves.     We’ve been given an opportunity to reassess everything and really think about what we want from life.  It’s given us an opportunity to not take things for granted and be grateful for what we have and where we are.   There’s no denying this is catastrophic for some people.  People are losing loved ones, it’s financially devastating to many, people are having to navigate schedule upheavals and bored kids (I’ve been SO impressed with some of the boundary setting i’ve been seeing from my mum friends!).   It’s not about undermining anyones experience in this.  It sucks. It truly sucks.      It’s not about feeling bad for feeling sad, or feeling bad for choosing to look at the positives.  It’s all judgement in one way or another.     But there is a LOT of good around if you choose to look for it.  We will come out of this stronger. We don’t need to know how right now.     It’s going to require a deep breath and a lot of trust.   This is just how I’m choosing to see it.     It’s my opinion and it doesn’t have to be yours.     You don’t have to agree, or judge, but you can respect it’s my opinion and respect the choices I make and I hope you will all do the same for each other.   If things are triggering you, zoom out and ask yourself why.  Where are you sweating the small stuff in the grand scheme of things that are going on right now?   My Instagram is going to be a force for positivity (the honest, genuine kind, not the toxic kind).     I’m not going to be on facebook too much.  I’m DEFINITELY going to be in the DMs so please do message me!  I’m continuing to offer my services.     Do what you’ve got to do, for yourself, in your business, it’s totally up to you.  You don’t have to ‘follow suit’ just because you think you ‘should’.    Everyone is going to do what they need to do and (as long as you’re taking government advice and trying not to be a d**k in the supermarkets) they should not be judged for handling it the way they feel they need to.   No guilt, no shame.    Keep your sense of humour.   Look at the NHS frontliners risking their lives and do what you can in terms of staying at home.   Perhaps when this is over we’ll have more respect for others, complain less, give more.  Who knows! We don’t know what’s going to happen…but we never did!   We’re globally in it together!    The only thing we ever have control over is ourselves and how we respond to things and that’s always been the case.   Stay strong, stay safe, stay sane, use your common sense and reach out for help when you need it.   If you got value from this and you know in your gut that now is the time to step up and start rewiring your thinking and changing things for yourself then book in a free discovery call so we can work out what needs to happen to get you from where you’re at right now, to the action taking success you know you can be!! If you want my eyes and ears on YOUR problems I work with people 1:1, through the Proactive Pants Programme and 1:1 full day intensives, stop waiting for if and when and decide to change things now! Fx Fran Excell, Subconscious Success Mentor & Host Of The Positive Pants Podcast – Helping Business Owners Overcome Self Sabotage & Get More Done In Less Time at RESOURCES: Check out The Positive Pants Podcast here Download your FREE Stressed To Success Meditation here Shop Printables & Meditations here Grab your 365 day ‘Attitude Of Gratitude’ Journal here Grab Your ‘Positive Pants Firmly On’ Notebook here Book In a Free 20 Minute Discovery Call here   Sign up for The Positive Pants Planner Waitlist here  
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