The choice to be positive or negative is not a singular choice. It’s a thousand choices — many of them to be made when we least feel like making a decision at all. The choice of how we feel is entirely up to us. It’s been written over and over again that when we want to surrender to negativity, if we will chose instead to ACT positively the process of acting can often get you actually feeling positive — just by the act of practicing positivity. Don’t fall for the nonsense. Be the attitude you want to see more of in this life.
I grew up on the Beach Boys, and Bubble Gum music and Rock and Roll. The lyrics of popular music would never win prizes for literature but those we positive outlook times. The 50’s, 60’s and 70’s as I remember them were ridiculously positive. We weren’t yet being inundated with messages about how we were killing the earth. Heck, all we had to worry about was the world blowing to pieces in nuclear holocaust!
Aside from growing up in a generally optimistic time, I am by nature a happy guy. I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about what can’t be; that’s because I’m lazy — I hate wasting my time and my energy. If I can’t fix it, I move on. I’m genetically impatient. But the need to keep moving has benefits. There’s no time to obsess about negative ideas, realities, facts. There’s always something else that I can concentrate on.
I know that doesn’t work for other people. I don’t pretend that it does, or would/could/should. However, that does not change the fact that we always have the choice of how we feel about … well… anything.
2017 will have many challenges for us all. I can focus on the challenges and obsess about them. I could ignore the challenges — but I don’t think that’s a very healthy thing to do either. Living under a rock does no one any good. Mostly I choose to confront challenges — acknowledge them, become aware of them — and move on. Whether it’s a national problem, or a global problem, if it’s something that affects how the world interacts with me I’m best off if I know how to adjust to the “problem.” But what good would it do if I fixated upon some singular problem and allowed my inability to negate the problem become an obsession? None whatsoever. Eventually I’d be no good to myself or anyone else.
No matter how I feel about anything I’ve found that something that helps me tremendously is remembering that other people react to the same stimuli at different paces, and in different ways. I sometimes feel impatient that someone else hasn’t “seen” the same thing I see. But they are looking through different glasses and with a different perspective. Often they started seeing at a different time than I did — and they have had a different amount of time to process what they observed. Just because I have reached a particular conclusion doesn’t mean anyone else has either, or that they are even ready to make a conclusion. This hasn’t made me more tolerant — I’m still impatient waiting for others to wake up and take action. But at least I understand what’s going on.
We each have our own coping mechanisms. That’s good. In the same way that’s it’s good that there’s room for all sorts of people in this world. We need diversity even when it’s hard dealing with that diversity. Letting others process the world in their own way is the only route to sanity. We can’t live someone else’s life; nor can we dictate the course of world events. We all are rather small bits in a big universe and we do well to remember our infinitesimalness. I’m not the boss of the world. Even when I’m convinced that the world would be much better off it I were. Laughing at myself had helped tremendously in learning to stay positive in a negative world.
Have a great day, my friends. Stop by tomorrow if you want, I’ll be here and we’ll have another heart to heart chat.