Monday, November 23, 2009

Mythbusters: The Myth of Positive Thinking

As a coach and a trainer, I truly believe that a positive attitude is the key to success. It's the strong foundation to which sustainable success is built on. We have to be positive thinkers. But when we talk about positive thinking, I think it helps to clarify what is and isn't positive.

Delusional thinking is not positive thinking. Positive thinkers looks at the facts and the issues and take it all into account as they devise a plan for overcoming obstacles. Delusional thinking ignores the reality and the facts and insist on keeping everything rosy when it is not.

When a positive thinker encounters a major obstacle like cancer, they belief they will beat it. However, they also investigate traditional and experimental treatments. They look at the research, they get other professional opinions and they proceed accordingly.

A delusional thinker thinks that the cancer will just magically disappear. If they can believe enough, it just might work. After all, they are being positive!

Positive thinking will not prevent problems. It is not a guarantee for an effortless cake walk. A lot of people assume that if they are positive enough, things will just magically fall in the place. They visualize their positive thoughts going before them and make the rocky roads smooth, filling the potholes along the way. Not true.

Positive thinkers have problems. What is difference is the approach. They don't assume the position of helplessness, apathy or frustration. They respond proactively, looking for other options, possibilities and opportunities. Positive thinkers are human. They have bad days and bad moods. But they don't dwell in those moments. They are able to move on and up quickly. They rebound.

Finally, Positive thinking means absolutely nothing if it is not followed by positive action. You can think all you want about a yummy Chinese Chicken Salad but if you want to eat that salad, you will have to make it, go get it or get someone else to make it or go get it. You have to act. Thinking about it alone will not make it so and it doesn't matter how positive your thoughts are.

Positive Thinking - Proactive Action = Dreaming
Go ahead and be a Positive Thinker!
But be more than positive.
Be real!
Be proactive!
And take action!


Josten said...

As i've ventured further into my journey of positive thinking i've enjoyed it more and more. Taking action while thinking positive is golden.

Tanya Crane said...

Experiencing positive emotions, This is one of the basic components of a flourishing life. Being outside in fine weather has shown to improve people's mood.Like wise success coaches help in improving the mindset to a positive node which is essential to attain success in life and business.

Karyn Beach said...

Josten - I think taking action while thinking positive is essential.

Tanya - I agree that experiencing the positive is essential. As far as fine weather improving mood, there is actually a disorder called Seasonal Affective Disorder that shows that prolonged bad and gloomy weather actually has a negative affect on mood. I don't think it's a coincidence that the acryonm is SAD!