If you look around you, you will find symmetry everywhere. Symmetry was thought by the Greeks to be the epitome of beauty. The entire universe is only understandable because of symmetry. We even think symmetrically; up/down, left/right, light/darkness, wet/dry, hot/cold and moving/still. Symmetry is another word for balance, and when we see people who have their emotions, actions or goals out of balance with the rest of society, we see those things as negative because they offend our sense of symmetry or order.
When it comes to our behavior, the difference between order and chaos is a matter of control. Uncontrolled emotions or actions are dangerous and harmful to you and those around you, while those same behaviors when controlled are beneficial and useful. So, how can you take negative behaviors and turn these liabilities to assets?
Here are 6 Ways to Turn Negative Behaviors Into Positive Ones
Turn Lust to Passion
Lust is the unrestrained desire for something, whether it is sex, money, power or something else. Lust leads to sexual predators, theft, and other horrible behaviors. If that desire can be controlled and channeled into something productive, it becomes passion. Passion can right wrongs, build impressive structures or send people to other worlds. Passion can be channeled into work, relationships and the community in order to make the world a better place.
Turn Glutton to Gastrophile
Gluttony is not just the act of eating too much, but also eating too soon, eating food that is overly costly or rare and eating with far too much pleasure and anticipation for the meal. It stems from a time when food could be incredibly scarce, and by eating too much you could starve someone else to death. But if you control that excessive desire to eat, you can become a great chef or winemaker. It is okay to enjoy the finer foods and drinks as long as it is in moderation. A fine meal can enrich conversation with your friends or partner. Not overdoing it and eating good food also leads to healthy bodies and fewer trips to the doctor.
Turn Lazy to Rest
Lazy is the lack of desire to act. Lazy people don’t want to do anything but lay in bed all day and let others take care of them. But, sometimes you need to be lazy, like when you are sick or injured. Your body needs time to rest and heal. You may feel that you don’t have time to lay around on the couch because you have stuff to do. If you keep pushing, you will make a minor physical ailment worse, so take some time and rest. People in the modern world also tend to over-schedule their lives and run from activity to activity and never give themselves a chance to recharge and refresh. Sometimes you need to take a day and just relax. Let your mind and body recover from the busy week.
Turn Rage to Anger
Rage is as uncontrolled as a wildfire and can cause just as much havoc in your life. When it is controlled it just becomes anger, and anger can be useful. Anger at injustice, mistreatment, or physical harm can spur people to action in order to protect others or rectify a bad situation. Anger can be a powerful force for change when controlled and directed into a cause. Anger spurs us to fight for what is right and to protect those that cannot protect themselves.
Turn Narcissism to Pride
Narcissism is excessive self-love or believing oneself better or superior to others. It is a form of extreme pride, so much pride and self-love that you put your own desires before the needs of others. But it is okay to be proud of achievements and accomplishments, just don’t let it go to your head. When it is controlled, you can be proud of others as well and not just yourself. Being proud of your kids for winning a competition or being proud of friends and family who achieve some noteworthy accomplishment can be good things as well. Just don’t be so proud that you denigrate the accomplishments of others. Be supportive and encouraging instead.
Turn Envy to Drive
Envy is a desire to have the traits or possessions of others, or to see someone else fail. It is one of the most destructive traits a person can exhibit, but if you turn a desire to see others fail into a desire to compete and succeed, then you will have harnessed a powerful force indeed. Drive can give you the strength to carry on even when you believe all is lost. It can propel you far beyond what you ever thought you could do. Take that desire and turn it into a drive to be the absolute best at what you do.