Positive thinking is ruining your life!
I finally said it because someone had to.
Positive Mental Attitude (or PMA to some) is often seen as the pinnacle of self-improvement.
There’s only one problem though: once it gets drawn out to an extreme level, which it often does, it quickly becomes one of the most toxic ways that you can think.
So, if you want to improve your life and confidence, you need to stop training your mind to be positive!
Why You Should Stop Training Your Mind To Be Positive
We all know that delusional thinking is bad.
For example, if I were to start telling everyone things like:
- “I’m going to be a millionaire in the next 6 weeks selling Herbalife supplements!” or
- “One day, I’ll be the President of the United States!” (unlikely since I’m a British citizen) or
- “Camila Cabello is eventually going to dump Shawn Mendes for me!”
Then everyone is going to call me out for being delusional, right?
But the same thing doesn’t apply for positive thinking.
We all go around everyday trying to use the power of positive thinking.
We say things like:
- “Everything is great!”
- “Prosperity flows to me at all times, in all ways!”
- “The universe will provide!”
- “I am filled with energy!”
- “I am happy all of the time!”
And we get applauded for staying positive, even when times are tough.
But how is this any different to my earlier delusions about becoming President?
How Positive Thinking Almost Ruined My Life
When I first started to get involved with self-improvement, I quickly discovered the foundation point of it all.
I had to learn how to think positive all of the time and never let negative thoughts or doubts creep in.
You’ve probably had some experience of this as well.
You may have even been told that dwelling on the negative will derail your progress towards your goals in life.
And, on the surface of it, that actually sounds pretty reasonable, right?
It sounds like it should work.
If you think positive then more positivity should come into your life.
There’s just one huge, gaping problem with that idea:
The world largely sucks!
The World Sucks and Positive Thinking Won’t Change That
At the time of writing this blog post, here’s what’s been going on in the world over the past few years:
- There is a worldwide pandemic that has killed over a million people
- Somehow, Nazis are back in the USA of all places
- World War 3 has almost started a few times
- And do I even need to mention the Game of Thrones series finale???
It took me a long time to figure out that positive thinking wasn’t going to change the world.
In fact, I was avoiding negativity so much that I completely distanced myself from my family.
After all, you have to stay away from negative “toxic” people, right?
I spent so long working on my positive mindset that I stopped taking action on my goals.
I was spending so much time reading, getting motivated, visualising, using affirmations, sleep hypnosis and so much more, all because I thought it was making me a better person.
And, maybe it did make me seem happier at the time but, under the surface, nothing was happening.
My life wasn’t changing.
And I wasn’t changing the world.
Why Positive Thinking Is So Popular
So there’s a pretty good reason why positive thinking is such an attractive self-improvement tool.
Positive thinking is easy!
In fact, positive thinking is ridiculously easy.
Especially when you compare it to the real action-based work you initially thought you had to do.
After all, it’s easier to visualise starting a successful business than it is to actually start one (trust me, I know!).
Positive thinking is so easy.
All you have to do is pretend that things are great and then great things will happen in your life.
You may have even been told that outright by self-help gurus telling you to “fake it ‘til you make it”.
Why go out there and practice confidence when you can just pretend to be confident instead?
And what’s wrong with that?
Well, it’s setting you up for a huge fall once the truth catches up with you.
Positive Mindset vs Positive Action
Positive thinking is made out to look like you’re shifting your mindset.
All you have to do is visualise, create some affirmations and thinking positive thoughts and you will shift your mindset.
All these things can probably be done in about 15 to 30 minutes a day.
But at a certain point, positive thinking falls away into it’s purest form:
Lying to yourself and lying to others.
And sure, lying to others is bad (sometimes).
But I would argue that it’s worse to lie to yourself.
Here’s the thing, in order to move forward with your goals in life, you have to be honest with yourself about a few things.
You have to know where you are in life, where you want to get to, what you have to do to get there and what you’re doing right now to attain that goal.
You have to be totally realistic with yourself.
And, I think if you’re being realistic, then you know that positive thinking is not getting you closer to your goals.
It doesn’t matter how positively you feel about getting a promotion at work. The chances are that if you don’t go out and ask for it, then you won’t get it.
Why Positive Thinking Is Disempowering
The most disempowering thing about positive thinking is that it takes you out of the equation.
Or rather, it takes your physical actions out of the equation.
Because if all you have to do is put positive energy out into the world, then what power do you actually have?
You’re really just leaving your success in the deciding hands of a cosmic force that will decide for you.
And, unfortunately, the world doesn’t seem to work that way.
The belief system of positive thinking takes away what should be the main emphasis of self-improvement: personal action.
You have to be working hard to strive towards your goals.
You can’t surrender your future to the possibility that if you just think positively enough, everything you want will come into your life.
If that was truly the case, then the world wouldn’t be the way that it is.
You Can’t Escape Negativity
Negativity is out there.
It’s also inside every single one of us.
We can’t hide fom it.
And that is a truth that all of us have to recognize in order to actually learn the rules to play the game at the end of the day.
Unfortunately, life is hard and there is negativity out there every single day.
But that does not necessarily mean that it's a bad thing.
I've spoken in the past about how powerful a negative mindset can be when it comes to planning out your goals.
For example, because you can forecast all the things that could go wrong when you can:
- Recognize where the pitfalls and obstacles are
- You can plan how you're going to get around those obstacles when you get to them
- Or you can figure out how to avoid them altogether
Expecting that bad things are going to happen will skyrocket your progress towards your goals.
Because you will be more prepared.
Negative events happen in our lives every single day.
You have to be as prepared as possible.
And that does mean forecasting negative things in your life.
Don’t Let Negative Thinking Become Your New Religion
Now, I’m not saying that you should spend the rest of your life wallowing in negativity.
In fact, that’s just as bad as trying to be positive all the time.
But, negativity can propel you towards your goals because you're seeing things that could potentially go wrong and figuring out ways to get around them.
On top of that, it’s making you more resilient.
Negative thinking can be empowering because it gives you a chance to take action.
Positive thinking takes that power away from you.
So, I would encourage you to start thinking about how positive thinking and negative thinking might not be as cut and dry as they seem on the surface.
It’s time to stop training your mind to be positive.
See the world as it is and then start taking action to become the person you’ve always know you could be.
Final Thoughts On Why You Should Stop Training Your Mind To Be Positive
If you want to know more about this concept, then I highly recommend Mark Manson’s book “Everything Is F*cked: A Book About Hope”.
He goes into a lot more detail about this entire concept and I know you’ll find it just as useful as I did.
But, in any case, learning to see things from a less positive and more realistic lens will serve you massively in life.
I hope you found this article useful and I look forward to having you back on LTUK very soon!
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- Take your life and confidence to the next level
- Achieve your goals faster than you ever thought was possible
- Finally overcome self-doubt and become the person you’ve always known you could become
Then Confidence Coaching is the way to do it!
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