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Rebellion Can Be A Positive Thing

Rebellion Can Be A Positive Thing!

When you think about rebellion, stereotypical images may come to mind. The paths of self-destruction, or even violence, are associated with rebellion. Perhaps, you see leather jackets and motorcycles? Maybe you think about certain countercultures such as the beatniks, bohemians, hippies, punk rockers, Goths, or Emo kids? Yet, rebellion can be positive, when it comes to healing your spirit. Your spirit is that part of you that knows what is true in your heart. It’s where you feel connected to the universe, your version of the divine. Your spirit feels the connection with all living things.

Your ego is the opposite of your spirit. It tells you that you’re greater than or less than others. It makes you feel not good enough. It’s that voice telling you that you are damaged goods. The ego takes on the limiting beliefs that you’ve inherited from childhood or just living in society as reality. I myself allowed the voice of ego to hold me back for many years. It made me feel so worried about what others would think of me. In my spiritual studies, I tried to find a solution to silence and even destroy the ego. Nothing seemed to work when it came to quieting the ego until recently.

During a very trying time in my life a few years ago, my ego was in overdrive, making up all kinds of scenarios about possibly ending up divorced and homeless. At times, it felt impossible to stop the negative thoughts that recycled again…until I had a thought come out of the blue. It came during a time where I had slowed down my thoughts just long enough to meditate and connect with the divine. The thought came as: “Perhaps, the best thing one could rebel against would be the ego.”

That idea really grabbed me! I had considered myself to be a rebel during most of my life. I rebelled against all kinds of things, including authority figures, institutions, and popular culture. I realized that it was my rebellious nature which led me to pursue my own spiritual path, instead of following a traditional religion. An a-ha moment also came to me when I saw that I had been on a personal journey of healing for at least 20 years. My path had included a rejection of both internal and external types of negativity. I saw that my form of rebellion was positive, since I was working on loving myself more, living my authentic purpose, being my true self, healing past hurts, and creating happiness.

Positive rebellion’s main gift is that it can effectively disarm the ego. I found it to be empowering and fun when I renamed my self-healing efforts as positive rebellion. It became a bit easier to shift negative thoughts, feelings, and emotions into positive ones. It is sometimes difficult to change a negative thought into a positive one right away. First, I have to start with the rejection of the negative. I rebel against it. For example, if I hear myself say, “I feel fat,” it can feel like a huge stretch to go straight to the opposite thought of “I love and approve of my body.” Before getting to the positive, there has to be a rejection of the negative. Positive rebellion is like telling the ego, “Oh, thanks for sharing, but I’m not going to listen to you.”

Try it and see what you think. I’d love to hear your thoughts.


Lisa Marie Selow is the Hay House author of A Rebel Chick Mystic’s Guide (coming November 2012!). She is a life coach, motivational speaker, women’s empowerment expert, and modern mystic. Lisa lives in metro Detroit, Michigan with her husband, JT, along with several electric guitars and friendly outdoor squirrels. Her website is:



  1. Gilly Maddison Gilly Maddison November 1, 2015

    Hi Corinne – thanks for putting a link to this at the end of your 3 books post – I am so glad I clicked on it. Throughout life, as I have struggled to understand myself, life and my place in this world, I have come to realise the answers are all there in my head. However, the useful thoughts are so often scrambled with very unhelpful thoughts and they can be exhausting to untangle from each other. It often takes the words of someone else, who has done alot of their own untangling, to give your own positive thoughts the vehicle on which to ride out of the confusion and into clarity. This post is a fantastic example of that and I am grateful to Lisa for sharing what she has learnt. It seems like a simple concept once you read it – the separation of ego and spirit – but it is a pretty profound idea that will really help me on my own journey. Thanks so much to you and Lisa for this wonderfully enlightening post.

  2. rimly rimly May 21, 2012

    Hey I have been a rebellion all my life. doing things that did not conform and I am sure part of that was also positive. It has made me whom I am today, a survivor!

    • Lisa Lisa May 21, 2012

      Yay! 🙂 Thriving and surviving…yes! 🙂

  3. Irene Irene May 17, 2012

    I love this article! “Perhaps, the best thing one could rebel against would be the ego.” — and this statement is one of the most empowering I’ve ever read! Thank you so much for sharing, Lisa. And thank you, Corinne, for having Lisa here! God bless you both 🙂

    • Lisa Lisa May 19, 2012

      Irene, thanks so much and blessings to you as well 🙂 xoxo

  4. Diana Pinto Diana Pinto May 17, 2012

    I’ve learnt something interesting today.Thanks for sharing the lovely article Lisa nd Corinne 🙂

    • Lisa Lisa May 19, 2012

      Diana, thanks for stopping by to read and comment. Appreciate it very much 🙂 xo

  5. Belinda Belinda May 17, 2012

    Hello Lisa & Corinne, I’m stumbling here and happy to read a great post. There is more than enough message in society telling us to conform which can lead to us not liking ourselves so much when we realize we’ve veered too far off from our authentic selves. So I really appreciate this message of positive rebellion. The ego needs to be challenged. Most people are too polite to take on that role, but that rebellious side we all have is up to the task.

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues May 17, 2012

      Thanks for stopping by, Belinda. Yes, for too long we’ve been told to conform and how often we lose ourselves in the process.

    • Lisa Lisa May 19, 2012

      Thanks for stopping by and for taking the time to comment. Sending you blessings and love too. 🙂

  6. Gustavo Gustavo May 16, 2012

    Very sincere congrats for you book! I’m looking forward to read it.

    You are great with the big picture thing: Your spirit is that part of you that knows what is true in your heart… Your spirit feels the connection with all living things.

    Your ego is the opposite of your spirit. It tells you that you’re greater than or less than others.

    Your spirit tells you we are all the same. Your ego likes to separate things on categories.

    Well said!

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues May 17, 2012

      Thanks for stopping by to comment, Gustavo. I’m sure Lisa will respond to you directly.

    • Lisa Lisa May 19, 2012

      Thanks so much for stopping by to comment and for the kind well wishes on my book. Thank you 🙂

  7. Mary Mary May 16, 2012

    Your point about positive rebellion is indeed refreshing as Myrna mentioned. Rebelling against the ego (or the “human nature” as I understand it in the Biblical context) is very difficult to do. But you are right, even the apostle Paul said to refuse to listen to the ego, and instead focus on what is noble, good and pleasing to God, because this is who we truly are.

    Thank you very much for sharing your insights and wishing you all the best with your book!

    Best regards,

    • Lisa Lisa May 16, 2012

      Thanks so much for commenting. That is interesting that bit about the apostle Paul. I hadn’t read about that before. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  8. Janaki Nagaraj Janaki Nagaraj May 16, 2012

    Nice wisdom here….wonderful post.

  9. Me Me May 16, 2012

    Since my teenage days I have always been considered a rebel. even today I consider myself to be one but of a different type. Whenever someone comments negatively about me I take it so badly on my ego that I end up improving it. And I enjoy doing that because it helps me get rid of few annoying habits and most importantly it irritates the other person as they no longer have any reason to comment 😉

    I agree being rebellious is fun and is definately a +ve thing……!!

  10. Everyday Gyaan Everyday Gyaan May 16, 2012

    Thank you Lisa Marie. It is a fab post ♥

  11. Jodi Jodi May 16, 2012

    I also saw rebellion as a positive! No matter what the oppression there is always some sort of protest. As a therapist I’m trained to find it and bring it out. Make it visible, install it so people can be proud and realize their power. This gives me an idea for a post! I’ll be sure to visit Lisa, too! Thanks for the intro to her!

    • Lisa Lisa May 16, 2012

      I’d love to see your post…if you wouldn’t mind. 🙂 Thanks for commenting and stopping by 🙂

  12. Martha Giffen Martha Giffen May 16, 2012

    Oh my, what a wonderful way of thinking! I never thought of putting rebellion in a positive light and using it against my ego, can I just say, every time I read your words, I’m forced to improve my thinking? This is awesome!

    • Lisa Lisa May 16, 2012

      Your writing always makes me think too, especially about the mindset things with biz. 🙂 🙂 🙂 Thanks for always sharing your positive guidance in your blogs.

  13. Myrna Myrna May 16, 2012

    I enjoyed reading your post. Your perspective on a positive rebellious approach is refreshing and creative. Good luck on your book!

    • Lisa Lisa May 16, 2012

      Thanks so much 🙂

  14. Lisa Lisa May 16, 2012

    Thanks so much to everyone for taking the time to read and comment 🙂 Thanks so much 🙂

  15. Jeanette Stahl Jeanette Stahl May 16, 2012

    Love it Lisa! Thanks for posting on FB about being a guest blogger. Good blog, perfect resonance. Ah yes, the EGO, friend or foe? The little voice that says “you can’t, you musn’t, you’ll fail” Silence the nag and step out in your glorious perfection!

    Hugs to you, Lisa Very happy for your continuing successes ♥


    • Lisa Lisa May 16, 2012

      Thanks for stopping by. Thank you for the support. xoxo

  16. Dave M. Saha Dave M. Saha May 16, 2012

    Interesting idea. I think I will try to think that way — sometimes I feel like my ego is killing me from the inside! Seriously. There is nothing, I repeat, nothing, worse than being not confident of yourself. I’m usually confident, but when it comes to certain things, I’m the biggest coward ever, and considering that usually that certain things don’t pose any particular danger to me, that’s when it becomes illogical. And I hate it.

    Thank you for the article, Lisa, and Corinne for sharing it here.

    • Lisa Lisa May 16, 2012

      Hey there, Dave,
      I relate to what you’re saying very much. I think it’s part of why I created the idea of positive rebellion ’cause my ego was having way too much influence in my life in the past. I wanted to find a somewhat fun way or concept to quiet my ego that worked for me. Of course, it’s just the first step. I think that many, myself included, are works in progress. It’s all good.

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues May 17, 2012

      Oh we all have some very silly things in our head that hold us back, Dave. Here’s to all of us rebelling against these!

  17. Nikky44 Nikky44 May 15, 2012

    rebellion is necessary, sometimes it saves life. Ego can be destructive, but when we have no choice? It hurts

  18. Dangerous Linda Dangerous Linda May 15, 2012

    Hi, Lisa! ~

    Congratulations on the publication of your new book with Hay House — very admirable!

    I think many people consider me to be a ‘rebel’ but I see myself as more of an ‘innovator’ — my ideas sometimes conflict with the status quo, but it’s because I’m reaching for empowerment rather than rejecting some sort of victimization.

    I am intrigued by this: “It is sometimes difficult to change a negative thought into a positive one right away. First, I have to start with the rejection of the negative.” This is a very Unity-like principal, with which I’ve been challenged over the years. The words ‘rejection’ and ‘negative’ are actually synonyms of each other which creates a ‘double negative’, cancelling them both out, it seems to me.

    I read you as a sincere spiritual seeker, as I am, and in that ‘spirit’ you might be interested in the work of Daniel M. Wegner, ‘White Bears and Other Unwanted Thoughts: Suppression, Obsession, and the Psychology of Mental Control’

    PS I wonder if your website is really new because when I went there I got this message: “There is no content to display. Please enter a valid embed URL in the visual editor.”

    • Lisa Lisa May 15, 2012

      Hi there, Linda,

      That’s interesting about the Unity principles bit. I’m not super familiar with their approach. I’m also not as strict with my grammar. I’m just trying to be down-to-earth and touch hearts, necessary for quieting the ego. Thanks for the book recommendation. And, yes, my website is very new. It should be functional soon. My web person and I are working on it, so there have been messages like those you describe.

      • Dangerous Linda Dangerous Linda May 15, 2012

        Thank you for the prompt response. According to Dr. Wegner, our sub-conscious minds, which control our conscious thoughts and actions, are more sensitive to ‘grammar’ than most people realize. That’s why I made the point and thought you might be interested in his work. Good luck to you 😉

        • Lisa Lisa May 15, 2012

          Oh, absolutely.

          I totally dig and have studied the subconscious mind for many years. It’s great that you resonate with that particular teacher, Dr. Wegner. We all have teachers that we enjoy and resonate with, I believe.

          Luckily, there’s no one, right way when it comes to healing. It’s such a personal process.

          Best wishes,

          • Dangerous Linda Dangerous Linda May 16, 2012

            i am in pursuit of Truth, not teachers, because teachers get some things right and some things wrong, while Truth remains True regardless of our opinions about it.

            i’m surprised you haven’t come across the information i’m referring to in your many years of study of the subconscious mind since it is fairly common knowledge in psychological circles and a basic element used in hypnosis, etc. i referred to a particular author’s work to make it easy for you to access the information, if you choose, not because his work is particularly eccentric or unique.

            i notice that you’re more inclined to ‘defend’ your pov, or generic non-specified pov’s, than to genuinely consider or respond authentically to my pov, so i will be happy to take my ideas elsewhere.

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues May 16, 2012

      Linda, to clarify about Lisa’s site -the link she has given is to her new one. Lisa has been blogging for a while now and that’s how I connected with her.

      • Dangerous Linda Dangerous Linda May 16, 2012

        Hi, Corinne! ~

        There was no insinuation about her experience or lack thereof concerning her website. I was impressed by her affiliation with you and also her publication with Hay House and I wanted to learn more so I went to her website. I thought she might have been unaware of the disconnect so I wanted to inform her what I ran into. XOXOX

  19. Martha Orlando Martha Orlando May 15, 2012

    Marvelous idea! Replacing negative “ego” thoughts with positive spiritual ones is crucial if we wish to live fulfilled and meaningful lives. I’ve been rebelling for quite some time now and it sure feels great!
    Thanks for this wonderful post and good luck with the book!

    • Lisa Lisa May 15, 2012

      Thanks for commenting and for the kind well wishes xo

  20. Lisa Marie Selow Lisa Marie Selow May 15, 2012

    Thanks so much Corinne Rodrigues

  21. Everyday Gyaan Everyday Gyaan May 15, 2012

    Thank you ladies.

  22. melissa melissa May 15, 2012

    Perhaps I could equate positive rebellion to sincerity/ being true to oneself, that’s how it tramples the ego…because the ego covers itself with superficial things and attaches itself to them ~ but once light(ning) hits us, we begin to shake off everything that begins to envelope it again.

    Off to rebelling positively 😛

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues May 16, 2012

      Fantastic comment, Melissa. Yes, once we are hit by the light, it’s difficult to play in the shadows again. Happy positive rebelling to you!

  23. Elizabeth Young Elizabeth Young May 15, 2012

    In math, ever positive has a negative, and every negative has a positive. Thanks for showing us the negative with a positive here! Best Wishes.

    • Lisa Lisa May 15, 2012

      Ooh, thanks, loved that math bit 🙂 Thank you and blessings.

  24. My Inner Chick My Inner Chick May 15, 2012

    Love Love Love!
    & I agree.
    When I think of “”rebellion,”” it has ALWAYS been a Positive thing…
    because it’s al about changing the world or yourself.
    That’s good. No?
    hope you are well, C.

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues May 16, 2012

      Thank you, Kim. Yes, changing ourselves and the world is very good indeed – and you my dear lady are a star at that. I’m well, just been away on holiday. Have been thinking of you. Will mail you soon. ♥

  25. Sulekha Rawat Sulekha Rawat May 15, 2012

    I love the idea of positive rebellion. We must rebel against the ego and give it a piece of our mind 🙂 great post. Thanks for sharing, Corinne and Lisa…

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues May 16, 2012

      Giving our ego a piece of our mind, Sulekha? What a great way to put it 😉

  26. sangeeta khanna sangeeta khanna May 15, 2012

    Absolutely. Rebellion can be and should always be a positive thing.
    This post resonates a chord. Thank you Corinne for introducing us to Lisa.

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