The other day I was speaking with a group of friends about the role of positivity in our perception of reality and something occurred to me. Now most of you reading this probably understand the role of gratefulness and how it can color your thoughts to become more positive but have you also considered the opposite? Well anyway this is what we were talking about. One of my friends was telling me about some of the techniques they use to start their day off in a positive manner and some of the tools they use throughout the day to maintain it. Most people will be familiar with a gratitude journal and how this simple tool can be effective in focusing your empathy on external things you’re grateful for. By doing this simple act in the morning you can reduce your thoughts of a negative nature and start your day off with a positive note. We all agreed in fact we all practice it.
Most people will be familiar with a gratitude journal and how this simple tool can be effective in focusing your empathy on external things you’re grateful for
So I ask the group how many of you are still being exposed to negative stimuli through social media, news, by internet marketing and entertainment? They all thought about it for a moment and one by one they shared their thoughts. Some limited there exposure to mainstream media news programs while others tried to cut back on their use of social media, and one even said they only watched films that aired on the Hallmark channel because they knew it would have a happy ending. So we all agreed we limited the external negative influences to some degree in an effort to maintain a positive outlook.
So we all agreed we limited the external negative influences to some degree in an effort to maintain a positive outlook.
So I made the following observations, now follow me with this because some of it’s going to require you to use your imagination. So picture yourself sitting in front of a large window, through that window you were able to observe the world, the trees, the grass, the people walking by. Depending on where you are maybe you’re looking at some water, or maybe you see a dog chasing a squirrel, or perhaps just the clouds rolling by in the sky. Suffice it to say outside that window lies all the relevant information that makes up your reality. On the side of the window are set of curtains that can be pulled in front of the window. These curtains are translucent so you can still see the world outside, but laid on top of them for you to see is all of the artificial, irrelevant and negative information you would come across in all of the media sources today. You would have the news about some shooting that took place half way across the world, or the negative campaign commercial that is shown before the video you want to watch on you tube. Perhaps it’s the argument two people that you knew from high school are having on Facebook, or the action film that has more killing then dialogue. All these things will be projected onto that curtain and through that you view the world.
All these things will be projected onto that curtain and through that you view the world.
The question I posed to the group was how do you think you’d feel about the world if you had to constantly look through that curtain at it. One by one we all agreed it’s not a preferable way to look at the world and certainly it could color your perception of it in fact how could it not. I made the further point that with time being a limiting factor and there being so many positive inputs why go out of our way to allow these negative imputs to color our perception of reality. I mean when you think about it media should really be viewed as junk food. We spent so much time working out, competing and making sure our nutrition is dialed into the essentials. We make sure we get enough sleep, breath correctly, and cut back on the negatives i.e. sugar, alcohol, tobacco. Yet we spent so little time analyzing what goes into one of the most important assets we have. When you really think about it the mind runs the whole machine and what are we feeding it, what are we fueling it on? What are you feeding your mind?