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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Inner-Strength, Happiness, and The Varieties of Negative Outlook

There is a very common mindset, that if one brings up a topic that is unpleasant, they are being negative, or if they do it too frequently, they are a negative person.  And, in some respects, this can be true.  Some people continue to drag others down, bringing up negative topic after negative topic, and never coming up with real solutions.  These people have a sense of hopelessness that can be contagious and debilitating for the people around them.  They carry an anger or a real sense of unjust with them.  They can frustrate other people and cause some to shut them out, because their attitude towards life is so unpleasant to be around.  They seem to lack appreciation for the good things, only focusing on the bad.  This lack of appreciation can often cause this type of person to stop trying to work for things that would earn them rewards, because they feel that they are hopeless, that the reward will never come.  We have ALL felt like this person from time to time.  And yet, a lot of us still hold disdain for people who are currently in this mindset.  However, nothing is black and white.

There is also another breed of person.  One that believes by talking and creating awareness, they actually can do something.  Whether that is changing one person's vote on a representative, in support of a cause they've decided to value.  Or maybe one who speaks to a manager at work to help them shift their mindset on some unpleasant things that have been happening in the workplace.  And you have a choice to partake in these conversations, and have beneficial discussions, or you can leave.  But the fact of the matter is, life is NOT perfect.  Life is NOT great all of the time.  We have to have some sort of awareness of bad situations, bad people, bad events, bad choices, because nothing ever got fixed until someone KNEW about it.  We do not put a bandaid over a broken bone.  It's still there until we go to the person (in this case, a doctor) who has the right tools to help us repair it.  We do not hide and pretend that the negative things are not there.  Until you address a serious problem, it's only going to get worse.  As responsible people, it's our duty to be aware of things that are unpleasant.

This is all about your OUTLOOK.  By ignoring the negative, you are BEING just as negative as the person in the first paragraph.  You either feel helpless to put a stop to bad situations, and therefore you ignore them.  Or, you are simply not strong enough to stay happy, while having the knowledge of the things in the second paragraph.  That is mental weakness.  Staying that way, is a form of giving up.  It is a form of negativity in it's own right.  By ignoring the negative because you can't handle it, you are being negative about yourself.  You are endorsing the belief that you are not strong enough to stay happy while knowing about negative events.  You have given up on yourself.  And by only focusing on the positive things in life, you have given up on other people, because you have given up any real attempt to help them.

We must teach ourselves to know about negative things and act on fixing them, while also having a positive outlook.  That is the difference between being a truly strong, motivated person, and someone who drags others down.  There are MANY varieties of both.  Who do you choose to be?

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