Positivity, a help or hinderance?
Positivity seems to be a bit of a buzz word at the moment, many people would have you maintain a positive mindset as the antidote to all ills, just think positive and all will be well!
As much as I am an advocate for being positive I do think that it is hard, unproductive and even unrealistic, to maintain that all of the time. I personally have often found myself beating myself up because I have tried and failed to be positive, adding to my upset and low mood. Being positive all the time can mean that you are ignoring and forcing down you more negative, and just as valid, emotions. The problem with this is they need to be acknowledged and dealt with as much as the positive ones so they will burst free at some point, they WILL have their say, and quite often, if they have been ignored and forced down, they will come out in unexpected ways and at the most inconvenient times.
Maybe, as ever it is about balance and recognising when its ok not to be 100% positive? Maybe it is ok to say I feel rubbish/overwhelmed/sad right now and that’s ok? My opinion is that the more we ignore and push aside our feelings the more they will come up and push at us, much like an annoying child wanting attention. If we recognise these feelings, name them and let them have a bit of space, maybe it will lessen the intensity and length they stay with us?
Now don’t get me wrong it isn’t about wallowing in the feelings and digging yourself deeper and deeper into them but just about sitting with what you have in that moment, being curious about what you are feeling and why, then maybe examining and asking yourself what do I need right now? Feelings, I think, are often an indication of a need in us and if we can work out that need and a safe way of filling that need maybe, just maybe it will alleviate the feeling. So how do you feel right now? What do you need?