Why we've all gone crazy for "positive thinking"
I am jetlagged. That's nothing unusual really. I wake up in the middle of the night and can't get back to sleep and then eventually I get out of bed and go to work.
Usually before the sun rises.
That has become the norm as I fly internationally so often growing my business and exploring the world around me. During my travels, I pick up books from bookstores often on business or psychology. The more I can read someone, the better decisions I can make in life or in business. A few years back I was given a book on cold reading. I read it from front cover to back, and from that point on, I feel as though it has become much harder for people to pull the wool over my eyes.
Reading has educated me on things that give me power to make better decisions, and I take that very seriously.
I also read a lot on positive psychology and the power of thinking positively about everything in life. For me, it works and it doesn't.
As I lay in bed last night, awake for hours, I tried something. I thought only of positive things and positive experiences. I focused almost in meditation state on positivity and good. I eventually got out of bed and got ready for work, trying to keep that positive vibe going. It seems to have worked well so far, but things happen during your day and without realising it, your vibe might just go out the door.
You can train yourself to do anything. You can train yourself to think positively about almost anything. But is that real and is it what is in your best interests?
Don't get me wrong, my glass is half full. I am constantly inspired and excited by life. I pinch myself often at how much better my life turned out than even my wildest dreams. But things do go wrong. Things take up your headspace that perhaps shouldn't. If you see someone in an accident for instance, you can't think positively about that. It is sad and its unfortunate, and no matter which way you want to put it, I would never think positively about that.
Nor seeing a homeless person in the street. If they are homeless, then they can be helped. It's not a positive experience. It's not an experience they had to have.
I feel pressure to think positively about most things, but there are just some things you can't, and that is normal and more than ok. Society now is saying to us with this whole positive thinking movement that we should always think positively, but that is so unbalanced, and in some ways a denial of some realities.
People do things that will disappoint you. Do you think positively about that, or do you think that perhaps that person did that for a reason which goes back to their childhood or a bad experience they have had? Maybe it's because they are insecure or not happy with themselves? That in itself is ok and a lesson that both sides may learn from, but do you have to see the positive side of it straight away? Perhaps not.
We live in a world of contradictions and each one of us has to choose the road we want to go down and with whom. We can manifest our own destiny to a degree, but it cannot be guaranteed as other things come into play. We may not have taken the right steps to arrive where we hoped to be, or things may have happened along the way that were completely out of our control.
I personally believe that positive thinking is helpful and aids our ability to see things in a light that is favourable.
While I am no Oprah Winfrey and I am not going to tell you that positive thinking alone will help you obtain the sweet life - what I will say is that it is helpful to think positively as much as possible and to rationalise the negative and think about the why, not the what.
Putting ourselves in a state of make believe and always throwing out to the world how wonderful life is when in fact it may not be, can do more harm than good. If you find yourself doing this, then you may have taken this all a bit too far. Realism and reality checks are part of life and our experiences that we are meant to have.
Embracing this and being empowered by sometimes failing or not being dealt the right cards, is in itself positive.