We may meet that occasional human being with that Pollyanna attitude, always positive; always looking on the bright side; always pouring light and love over any dark or dire situation; but Pollyanna is not whole. Pollyanna is missing half of who she is. But is there a negative side to positive thinking
Unfortunately this is what some personal development paths are encouraging – being ‘positive’ pretty much all of the time. However, being human is not all one-sided, we are a mixture of both ‘positive’ and ‘negative’ characteristics.
Somebody once told me when I criticised my old behaviour (of partying, drinking and socialising a lot) “Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater” because that was exactly what I was trying to do. I thought back then, peace, joy, love and spirituality would rid me of my ‘bad’ behaviour. I was very wrong.
A Balanced Attitude Does Not Exclude
During my obsessive days (working with the law of attraction/creating my reality), my Pollyanna attitude dismissed anyone having a hard time and anyone expressing what I perceived to be negative. The ‘then’ teachers that I followed (Abraham Hicks), talked about staying away from people of a ‘lower vibration’. My ego loved the ‘chosen one’ experience of being on the ‘leading edge of thought’ that they talked about. So I kept phone-calls with dramatic members of my family to a minimum; I kept moving my conversations with friends who were having a hard time away from their ‘problems’ and I put a ‘positive’ slant on everything. In essence I was not there for my friends or family, I did everything to avoid ‘negativity’.
What a ridiculous way to live.
Don’t Lose Your Humanity To Your Spiritual Vanity
After I posted my rather outspoken video on YouTube to help people who were addicted to the teachings of Abraham Hicks I received hundreds of attacks and criticism in the comments section (so much so I had to stop comments altogether); some were attacking my personality, some were misunderstanding me totally and most simply expressed ‘You don’t get it!’
But I did get it, I had walked the Pollyanna path, many of the later teachings were very much ‘positive, positive, positive‘ and less of embracing feelings. I had stayed ‘vibrationally positive’, but in the process I gave up my humanity to my spiritual vanity.
Looking back it was a great learning curve because many people (like me) see messages about the Law of Attraction and Creating Reality as being positive and as a result may lose their heart connection with the rest of humanity. If a philosophy or belief system does not have compassion and love at its heart, it’s empty.
This can happen in many spiritual traditions from the Church, Buddhism to other religions, with people aiming to get rid of the ‘bad’ aspects of their human nature.
So a balanced attitude is essential.
No more excluding a whole side of who you are.
Time to be fully human.
How Can I Experience Balance?
- Don’t avoid difficult conversations if a friend genuinely needs a listening ear.
- Listen without offering insights or an opinion.
- Start to look at the ‘negative’ – sadness, anger, rage, frustration as something to embrace not erase.
- When a friend or family member is complaining about something, accept that they may not be going around in circles, but processing some deeper level self-reflection at a different level – a spiral – not a circle.
- Don’t use over-working, eating, TV, computer games to avoid feeling challenging emotions, see them for what they are – a treasure chest where real peace can be found.
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