My Butterfly Dream

Crazy thoughts and not so wild ideas

Category: Self discovery

Is there a point to positivity?

What’s the point of being positive and is it really a super power?

Are you just as tired as I am of hearing statements such as: “your thoughts create your reality”, “push away all negative thoughts and only think positive ones?”, “law of attraction…blah blah blah.”
No? Really?
It’s just me then?

I am constantly conflicted between believing that our lives are already pre-determined for us (we fool ourselves into thinking we have free will but in reality it doesn’t exist) or that we do have free will because our thoughts create our reality (one of the biggest debates I try and avoid with a certain friend who has upped his philosophy intake).

Let’s say hypothetically that both are true depending on what you believe. If you believe that your thoughts create your reality then it makes sense to think only positive thoughts. But this kind of thinking is only one sided and doesn’t take how you feel into account. It’s the chicken and egg scenario. No matter what you think, if you feel bad, thinking positively won’t help. Then there’s also the idea that if you have negative thoughts and you try force them away by thinking positively you end up feeling even worse from failing to be fully positive anyway. Thinking positively is only one aspect of a healthy mindset. There’s actions and feelings that also need to be taken into account. Because in reality, negative thoughts don’t just disappear. Negative reactions and feelings don’t just disappear. We need to understand why they’re there and deal with the issues that created them, whatever that is.
Talk about a conundrum.

Second scenario: If you believe our lives are pre-determined for us, then what’s the point of trying to be positive in a difficult situation? What will happen will happen anyway so I might as well go into victim mode, wallow in self pity and attract people who can feel sorry for me too.
Now this is where it gets interesting. If we don’t have free will and life will run its course regardless of what decision is made then why think positively? Because in this scenario it reinforces that it’s not only about the act of thinking that makes everything count but the positive behaviour you have on yourself and others. Because BEING positive makes you more resilient. How?
Example: I had an intense week; it was the beginning of the month and work was busier than usual, I was exhausted, wasn’t sleeping well and it felt like everyone wanted my time which was out of my control. There was a moment where I had had enough and felt like I couldn’t deal with anything anymore. But feeling sorry for myself only made me feel worse which seemed to make me notice only the bad things even more which of course made them feel bigger than they were. I had to get out of this funk. Because yes, everything may have been out of my control but not my reactions to the situations that arose.

The next morning, I woke up, appreciated how easy my commute to work is, appreciated the good weather and then got on with everything else. I wasn’t forcing myself to think positively. I was purposely being positive by focusing on small things that I was grateful for. I was choosing how to react to everything consciously. I chose to focus on action before thoughts – I chose to act positively first rather than think positively first. And for me, it definitely made my day that much easier. Dealing with my own time not being in my control seemed like something I could handle. Did it mean that I denied the negative thoughts I had when I had them? No. It meant I recognised them, felt them, determined if it was serious enough to wallow in (it usually isn’t), examined if there was anything I should be learning and then let it go. And then reminded myself of all the things I was grateful for.

Is there a point of being positive? The answer really is up to you. And it being a super power – up to how you use your powers. And what you do with it. It’s a holistic view where you need to consider your thoughts, actions, reactions and feelings. That’s what positivity is and only you can determine if there’s a point to it or not.