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If you’ve been following me for a while then you’ll probably know by now that I am a big fan of positive thinking. Everyday I say “Today is going to be a good day” in order to intentionally cultivate a mindset that is focused on gratitude. It helps me appreciate the full gift of life and I notice small joys throughout my day because of this.
A positive mindset carries so much power as you reach your goals and one of these days, I’ll have to write a blog post about why this is. Hint: there is scientific evidence that positive thinking will improve your chances for success! Stay tuned for a future blog post on that topic!
Today though, I want to talk about some of the side effects of common sayings that seem to generate positivity but could actually be hurtful to your relationships.
Simply put, life is hard and people struggle. We all experience ups and downs and we need friend who can be there for us when we’re going through a tough time, not someone who will tell us we’re being silly.
Sometimes a simple “Good Vibes Only” bandaid just can’t fix the problem, and if you say that to someone when they’re in the middle of a divorce or losing a child or being laid off, you could lose a friend.
Instead, there are things you can say and do to support people who are struggling to offer hope without losing your positive side.
Let’s explore what this looks like.
Letting people know that you understand their need to heal from a painful situation doesn’t remove your ability to be positive, but it does show that you are a loyal friend who will be there no matter what. Empathize with people, knowing that you have likely experienced healing at one time or another and had a friend with you during that time too.
Negativity is easy to fall into. When a friend is talking negatively it can become an old habit we slip into with them. Sometimes people just need someone to listen and then the negativity goes away. They might even be more open to listen to your positive perspective if you took the time to listen to them. We all need support from time to time. Continue to be positive while listening and hearing others.
Sometimes from an outside perspective we may wonder why someone is still struggling after so long. It may feel like a long time for us but may not feel that way for them. Be patient and share your hope that the future will provide answers that might not be visible right now.
Positivity is a great thing. I look to see the good in everything while also being sensitive to those who might not be able to see the positive at a particular moment. If you’ve got a friend who is struggling, you could even try saying, “I’ll carry the positivity for both of us” as a way to support them when they can’t support themselves.
PLEASE share your triumphs and your joys with the world. Don’t hide those things, we need more positivity in the world! But don’t be afraid to tell others when you have a bad day too. Being vulnerable is part of living authentically and it’s inevitable that even the positive people will have a bad day. Share your honest journey and people will feel like they can relate to you more because of it.
Ultimately, it’s about being there for people when they need it most in order to give them hope to keep going.
There are ways to share positivity in a way that provides hope without sounding insensitive or dismissive of the pain. We all go through tough times.
Instead of seeing positivity just as a feel-good, happy-go-lucky approach to life, view it as a deeper awareness of the goodness and meaning in life that isn’t affected by changing circumstances.
Positivity is HOPE, and while that doesn’t mean we run away from pain, it does mean we can still look for a rainbow waiting on the other side of the storm clouds.
That hope for a rainbow can give you the strength. There is meaning to our lives and when you find something meaningful to hold on to, you can ride out any storm. Find meaning in something outside of you that makes you think about the bigger picture, even in those moments of struggle.
Did any of these unhelpful comments resonate with you? Have you heard any other ones in your life? Write and tell me about it in the comments below, I would love to hear from you.
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