Why do we seem so much better at expressing negativity than positivity?
This question has been on my mind for a while now, and is part of why I began my other weekly posts about Positivity.
Almost every Monday I’d open up Facebook or Twitter and the first thing I would see is complaints. Weekend’s over, here we go again, another toilsome workweek, fun’s over, and so on. Heaps of negativity, enough to undo any good the weekend might have done for rest and rejuvenation.
The world can be a dark and scary place, it appears. Terrorists bombing people, sex slaves being trafficked, political upheaval in the United States and abroad, fear of strangers and refugees and multiculturalism dominate news feeds across social media. People are constantly focusing on and spreading news of bad world happenings.
So much negativity. So much anger, fear, and outright hatred. The internet, a font of information and connectivity is being constantly used to perpetuate the bad feelings, and to make us angrier, more fearful and, frankly, sadder.
It is so easy to let negativity dominate our world view. I hate my job. That person really upsets me. Why are they running that person for public office? Why does my mouse keep getting lost and my computer freezing up? How come that person got a raise instead of me? I hate Mondays.
Everything we say carries weight, often far more than we realize. And it is really, really easy to get caught up in negativity due to its prevalence on social media.
I can’t avoid the news. I need to know what is going on out there. I agree, it is wise to be informed. However, there is no need to swim into the deepest depths of all the terrible news around the world. Informed is one thing, inundated and swept beneath the waves is quite another.
What can we do in the face of this? The first thing is both the simplest and the hardest at the same time. Mind what you think about. If you are all focused on that negative thing, if you are caught up in exploring how bad those people are or that situation is, consider what that is doing to you. Is it helping or hindering your path? Are your thoughts advancing your goals or holding them back?
The second thing is to mind what we are saying. Are you talking about your dislike of that person, place or thing? Are you complaining about something or someone? Are you discussing how horrid a thing is, how bad it is making you feel, how disempowered you are feeling? Are you using the phrase I hate?
This is important to not just Pathwalking, but to living a happy, fulfilling and enjoyable life. When your focus is on negative things, when you are constantly thinking about and talking about them, if consciousness creates reality, guess what you are creating?
My thinking and feeling more positive is not going to get me better Presidential candidates. It is not going to stop terrorists from murdering people. It is not going to make a difference. Actually, that’s where we are all mistaken. It can and will make a difference, but not in the manner we think is most important.
All that I can control is how I am thinking, how I am feeling, and how I am acting. I cannot control anyone else. I could have all the money and influence and power in the world, and I would still only be able to effect myself. Period.
Why does this matter? Because when you see and accept this fact, you empower yourself. You take back control, and you determine how you are going to think, to feel, and to act.
When we all click on those links to those horrid news stories, the people who control those particular media outlets determine that clearly they should put out more of the same. When we get into heated debates about things with our friends, we perpetuate the things we don’t want to give power to. When we talk about the things we hate and dislike and do not want, we empower them instead of the things we love, we enjoy, and that we DO want.
It seems selfish, and small. I recognize that. However, the truth is that it’s not. When we change the conversation, when we stop giving the attention to all the negativity and bad news, when we change our focus to positivity and good news we can and will create more of it. That empowers us, and when we feel empowered we in turn empower others. It may seem insignificant, it may seem too personal to have a wider range effect, but I believe that if consciousness creates reality, even the small ideas have the potential to become worldwide phenomena.
Here is my suggestion for a means to experiment with this premise. Consider what you are thinking about RIGHT NOW. Is it good or bad? Are you thinking about something you want, or something you don’t want? Are you feeling anxious, or excited? When you take this into account, take a moment and focus on something positive. Remember the power of the words I AM, and think of something good, not bad, to follow them with.
Before you post to G+, Twitter or Facebook, consider if you are contributing something good or something bad to the feeds.
Try these for a day, and see how much better a day focused on positives is over a day focused on negatives. I think you might be pleasantly surprised.
Do you feel empowered?
GOAL LOG – Week 26:
Diet: My extreme diet is partially over with the start of July. I am still eating well, still eating far less bread and pasta while keeping away from candy and other sugars of that sort.
Exercise: Fencing happened only 1 day last week, but I have been dog sitting. This means there have been several, daily long walks, plus I spent my weekend hiking, both in an urban and rock-scrambling setting. Much exercise, but no trips to the gym.
Writing: No writing but the blogs happened last week. I need to get back on track with this.
Meditation: Three days of meditation, at least 3 minutes each day. This, too, needs to be increased.
Gratitude: I wrote out 5 or 6 things to be grateful for every day last week.
This is the two-hundred thirty-sixth entry in my series. These weekly posts are ideas and my personal experiences in walking along the path of life. I share this journey as part of my desire to make a difference in this world along the way.
Thank you for joining me. Feel free to re-blog and share.
The first year of Pathwalking, including some expanded ideas, is available here.
If you enjoy Pathwalking, you may also want to read my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.