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Over the past decade or so, positive thinking has become for many people interested in personal development an important tool to reach a successful and happy life. In attending classes, reading books and sitting in numerous sessions with life coaches, many have become masters of optimism and positive thinking. The art of positive thinking has led them into a life full of beautiful things and positive outcomes. Surely they must also live happy lives. For myself though the reality looks a little different, since positive thinking alone doesn’t necessarily lead to happiness. While it can be a great tool to move towards that dream life there is also a downside to positive thinking.
We might miss deeply moving conversations
In the past I often heard those around me saying that there is a hype about positive thinking. Back then I didn’t agree, neither did I. Instead I was optimistic that those people will find their own way around their thinking. Soon this became my mantra and I lost many opportunities to challenge other ways of thinking. With this I too missed out on deeply moving conversations that would have made me stronger and wiser.
We might oversee important facts
Over time I have learnt to look at everything from a positive point of view. I used to believe that at the end everything will work out just fine (and sometimes magically by itself). With this I occasionally have overseen important facts, that suggested a less positive outcome. I missed to tackle obstacles that were clearly laid out in front of me, instead I was still waiting for that positive outcome to appear.
We might silence our inner voice
Sometimes positive thinking doesn’t allow exploration and acceptance of negative thoughts or doubts. These however are powerful messages from the inner voice that are important to observe, best without judgement. Since I started to acknowledge doubt and negative thoughts I have been able to clear them up simply by using actual facts.
While positive thinking is a powerful tool when moving towards a better outlook in life, the downside could be silencing the inner voice, overseeing important facts and missing opportunities for deeply moving conversations. By allowing yourself to discuss with others your way of thinking, considering all facts available and understanding the nature of your negative thoughts and doubts along with using the tools of positive thinking you are mentally set up to reach a successful and happy life in no time.
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Sandy Seeber, July 2015