Forced positivity - Deepstash

deepstash

Beta

Get an account to save ideas & make your own & organize them how you wish.

deepstash

Beta

Time to ditch ‘toxic positivity,’ experts say: ‘It’s okay not to be okay’

Forced positivity

Forced positivity

"Look on the bright side." Amid a pandemic and widespread social unrest, experts caution us against phrases like these that are not only unhelpful but also toxic.

While cultivating a positive mindset is a good coping mechanism, putting a positive spin as the only way to cope is harmful. It's like forcing more ice cream than you can eat with the hope that you will feel even better.

270 SAVES


This is a professional note extracted from an online article.

Read more efficiently

Save what inspires you

Remember anything

IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

Time to ditch ‘toxic positivity,’ experts say: ‘It’s okay not to be okay’

Time to ditch ‘toxic positivity,’ experts say: ‘It’s okay not to be okay’

https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/wellness/toxic-positivity-mental-health-covid/2020/08/19/5dff8d16-e0c8-11ea-8181-606e603bb1c4_story.html

washingtonpost.com

4

Key Ideas

Forced positivity

"Look on the bright side." Amid a pandemic and widespread social unrest, experts caution us against phrases like these that are not only unhelpful but also toxic.

While cultivating a positive mindset is a good coping mechanism, putting a positive spin as the only way to cope is harmful. It's like forcing more ice cream than you can eat with the hope that you will feel even better.

Toxic positivity denies reality

Positivity makes people appear more well-adapted and popular with their peers.

The issue is not the people who are genuinely upbeat but when people are forced to appear positive in situations where it's not natural, like illness, homelessness, food insecurity, unemployment, or racial injustice.

Damaging effects of toxic positivity

Forcing positivity denies a very real sense of despair and hopelessness and alienates those who are struggling.

Internalizing these messages can also be damaging. We judge ourselves for feeling negative and then feel bad for feeling bad. It postpones any healing or move toward problem-solving.

Addressing negative emotions

Research shows that accepting negative emotions may be more beneficial. Recognize that how you feel is valid. It's okay not to feel okay. Don't feel pressured to attempt lofty tasks such as picking a new hobby.

Make the best of it by accepting the situation as it is and doing the best you can. If you want to support another person, ask them what kind of support they would like and ensure to validate their emotions.

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Susan David

“Being positive has become a new form of moral correctness.”

Susan David
Forced positivity

Suppressing or avoiding our difficult emotions is not healthy or helpful.

Doing this impairs our capacity to deal with the world as it is, not as we wish it to be. And this leads to lower levels of resilience, lower levels of wellbeing, and higher levels of depression and anxiety.

Labeling difficult emotions

An important way of dealing with a difficult emotion is to label it effectively.

Labeling your emotions more accurately helps you understand the cause of those emotions and triggers your ability to set goals and to make real concrete changes.

2 more ideas

A relentless focus on positivity is ineffective

When someone is going through a hard time, insisting they stay strong is ineffective.

Research suggests positivity often has the opposite effect: It makes them feel bad abo...

The shallow bonds of positivity

Seeking out people who draw out the positive side only can make you feel alone in your moments of vulnerability.

The relationship becomes a performance of happiness and creates a wedge between you.

The signs of misplaced positivity

Be aware of how your friends react to your sunny attitude. If it makes them perk up, you are doing good.

However, if your encouragement makes them withdraw, your positivity might be misplaced.

2 more ideas

False positivity

We are caught up in a rigid culture that values positivity.

However, when we put aside our difficult emotions in order to embrace dishonest positivity, we fail to discover skills that can hel...

Tough emotions are essential for living

How we deal with our emotions affects how we love, how we live, how we parent and how we lead.

We should not view our emotions as good or bad, positive or negative. We need our emotions for real resilience.

Moving Beyond Emotional Rigidity

When we go through tough situations, we cannot ignore our negative emotions with the hope that they don't matter.

Write down what you are truly feeling in a personal notebook. Move beyond the rigidity of denial.

3 more ideas

Emotions

They are basal responses that begin in the subcortical areas of the brain responsible for producing biochemical reactions to environmental stimuli that have a direct impact on our physical state.&n...

Feelings

Feelings are preceded by emotions and tend to be our reactions to them. Emotions are a more generalized experience across humans, but feelings are more subjective and influenced by our personal experiences and interpretations, thus they are harder to measure.

Negative Emotions

They can be defined as unpleasant or unhappy emotions evoked in individuals to express a negative effect towards something.

Although some are labeled negative, all emotions are normal to the human experience. And it’s important to understand when and why negative emotions might arise, and develop positive behaviors to address them.

6 more ideas

Forgiveness

Forgiveness is choosing to not let negative events of the past define how you feel.

Forgiveness can keep your emotional body healthy. It increases feelings of happiness and decreases ...

Forgiving is not the same as forgetting

You can forgive someone and still maintain a boundary. They may not even necessarily know you forgave them.

When you hold onto anger towards yourself or others, it weighs you down, drains your energy and increases your stress.

Living in the past

Resentment forces you to live in the past by fixing that person to that past moment.

Do not let yourself or the relationship be defined by anger. The ability to forgive and move on is critical for maintaining a healthy and happy relationship with the people you care about.

6 more ideas

Self-esteem to measure success
During the 1960s, psychologists started studying what made some people more successful than others. They believed the answer to be self-esteem.

Self-esteem was a measurement of ...

Promoting self-esteem

The theory is that if everyone has high self-esteem, then everyone will be successful and live a happy life. If a society was inoculated with high self-esteem, it would end poverty, crime, and violence.

But, one should take into account that high self-esteem could be the result of success, not necessarily the cause. Also, thinking that only one thing can explain how to be successful, is probably naive.

Self-esteem and success

There’s actually very little correlation between self-esteem and success.  Research on self-esteem strongly correlates with how good people feel, in general

Self-esteem is complex and can be a good or a bad thing, depending on what is measured. 

7 more ideas

Eating Distract from Emotions

We often associate eating with relief or even excitement, and it’s only natural that we’d reach for those same feelings when we’re worried or sad.

Why we choose comfort food

Comfort foods don’t tend to be healthy. We want cake or pasta or chips when we’re emotionally eating. We have emotional memories around certain foods, which are more likely to involve your grandma’s lasagna than a salad. 

But after we eat for emotional reasons, we’re replacing our original feelings with the emotions that arise out of eating.

Comfort food

We associate comfort food with positive memories.

Think about all the happy and comforting memories you have involving food. Maybe your family used to celebrate occasions with a trip to the ice cream shop, or maybe your mom or dad used to soften the blow of a bad day with macaroni and cheese. When you’re feeling rejected or anxious today, eating one of those foods is an instant connection to that soothing time.

one more idea

Positivity Could be Good for Us

Negative thinking can narrow our thinking and prevent us from moving forward. Positive encouragement can open our minds to alternatives. It fosters creative thinking and opens us up to take on risk...

Forcing positive thinking

Forcing positive thinking puts us under pressure and in an always-on-the-alert mode. We can never relax because a negative thought might pop into our heads when we least expect it.

It can make us feel more negative emotions and we may blame ourselves for not being happy enough.

We need some negative emotions

Emotions like fear and anxiety can help us to act in certain situations, for instance, alerting us to danger. Anxiety should not be avoided. It can point to an underlying issue that needs to be addressed.

Thinking negatively can also help us prepare for worst-case scenarios in advance. However, too much negative thinking is not good for us either.

2 more ideas

Reframe or divert

The first step in approaching a negative situation with an optimistic outlook is to accept what you can’t change.

Once you’ve done that, you have 2 options: reframe ( look ...

Savor the good

Noticing and savoring the pleasant moments and thinking, "Wow, this is really great "can strengthen positive emotions.

In general, we tend to dwell on the negative side and not notice the positive things we experience.

Set reminders

Write yourself a message on a sticky note and attach it to your computer screen at work (an inspirational quote, a reminder to smile, etc).

Small reminders like these help keep positivity front and center in your life.

3 more ideas

Conflict mistaken for passion

Arguments and disagreements in relationships are normal, but screaming matches and every day fighting isn’t.

People who seek out conflict in their relationship for the intens...

Keeping the peace

Ignoring problems in a relationship in order to avoid conflict will only mean that the problems pile up until they can no longer be ignored – and by then, it might be too hard to fix.

Keeping score

Keeping track of the things that you do, versus the things that they do is a way to create pressure and conflict where there should only be teamwork. 

Sit down together and work out a plan on things like chores or bills, and who does or pays what.

4 more ideas