Is toxic positivity for real?
Do you remember Parker(Alec Baldwin) from F.R.I.E.N.D.S? The Phoebe's boyfriend for two episodes in season 8. The over-optimistic guy who is over-excited for everything(pretend to be).
This article is going to revolve around parker's behavior that is toxic positivity, the tendency of putting a good spin on everything.
Imagine being with a person like that in real or you being the one. Sounds weird? Subconsciously we do by having the mindset, "positive vibes only" or " If I can survive, so can you."
What is toxic positivity?
Being positive or optimistic in life is fruitful, but putting a good spin on every experience or every moment is not healthy. The tendency of being a more positive or happy person resulting in suppressed negative emotions is toxic positivity.
No emotion is build to last forever but trying to impose positive(happy) ones to last forever is not going to take you anywhere.
This article is going to give you an overview of toxic positivity.
- Denying your true feelings.
- Try to " go with the flow" by bottling up the emotions.
- Guilt for not feeling okay.
- Keeping down others' experiences with "positive" mentions.
- Giving someone outlook( " look for the silver lining") instead of legitimizing their experiences
- Shaming on expressing negative emotions.
I often heard people saying, brave people don't cry. It needs the courage to acknowledge and work on your emotional being. Identify these signs and put off toxic positivity to be a more healthy emotional being.
Impacts of toxic positivity:
Toxic positivity harms our mental and physical well being.
Shame is one of the reasons.
Shame for not being able to love life to the fullest or not being grateful enough. Negativity bias is the natural tendency of human behavior, yet feeling sorry for the same.
This same can results in isolation or other related stuff, causing more suffering for the victim.
How to deal with it?
Empathy and acceptance is the key to self and others. Next time instead of shaming and judging for what you feel(other feels) try to be kind and accept the emotion as they are.
We have never heard anyone calming down whenever we are over-enthusiastic or positive but do whenever we have negative emotions. Every emotion needs time to get processed that requires kindness, empathy, and acceptance.
To flourish in life, we need both positive and negative emotions. Our life is a sailboat where positive emotions work as mast while keeping the balance; negative emotions are the keel below the waterline.
So instead of using the mantra " Be positive", let's switch to " Be open."
Being open to every emotion will going to make you a better emotional being and this world a better place to live.