The other day I walked into work in a really good mood. It hadn’t necessarily been a ridiculously productive day, I hadn’t gotten any great piece of news, there really wasn’t a reason for it, but I was just feeling really happy. I walked into the break room and started saying hi to everyone. I was putting out those encouraging vibes, like “hey y’all, we ready to have a great shift?!!”
Now, do you think everyone in that break room had that same exact energy? No. In fact, a lot of my coworkers were commenting on me being in such a good mood. After all, we were at work. That’s not necessarily everyone’s favorite activity. No matter how much you love your job, it's still a job, and there are definitely days where you don’t really want to be there.
There are days like that in life, too. Where you wake up groggy and already ready for the day to be done. I’ve definitely had some days, even at the end of this week, where the day to day grind has become a little disheartening. Life feels mundane and there isn’t a lot to be super excited about.
On these low days, I really start to wonder where positive Amanda who was so vocal on Tuesday wandered off to?
It’s easy to let that mundaneness of life get you down. It’s easy to turn on the TV and just feel overwhelmed with all the problems in the world. It’s easy to let the negativity take over your life because the rest of the world seems stuck in that same mindset.
Those things are all easy, but today I want to talk to you about something that is radical.
Positivity. Positivity is radical.
Our world today has been thrust into a resting state of negativity. We wake up expecting the worst rather than hoping for the best. The news reports tragedy much more often than triumph. And conversations often begin with a complaint rather than a compliment.
When the world operates one way, you have to be radical to go against the grain. Being the one person who refuses to complain when everyone else is, that takes bravery. To find the bright side in a particularly dark situation, that takes strength. And to choose positivity in a world that leans on apathy, that takes a special kind of person.
That special person can be you, but I’ll warn you, it won’t always be easy. Radical positivity is a long term commitment. And it's a commitment that many other people will try to talk you out of. Practicing radical positivity is a daily choice.
Think about the conversations you have every day, maybe at work or with your family. How many of those conversations start out with complaints? Or arguments? Or with casual jokes that can actually be hurtful? I don’t know about you guys, but throughout my life, I’ve interacted with a lot of groups that were based on this sort of negativity and judgement. I never fit in there. Because I would try to keep things light and positive, and that just didn’t fit in with the attitude in those rooms. So I left. And sometimes that’s what radical positivity is all about. It’s about having the strength and wherewithal to say “this room isn’t feeding my soul, so I need to find one that will.” Practicing radical positivity includes protecting yourself from incessant negativity.
People aren’t always going to accept your positive mindset. People are going to question why you’re happy all the time. They’re going to bring up problems just to try and prove to you that the world is a bad place. In my opinion, that's just jealousy talking. You have a power inside you to find light in every situation. You find a path to acceptance and love where others only see a path to judgement and hate. You are living a fulfilling life, because you made a choice to use your thoughts and actions to better the world rather than tear it down.
Maybe you already feel this way. Maybe you’re already the person who lights up every room you walk into and brings a vibrant energy to every situation. That’s incredible, please keep up that good work. Maybe you want to be this person. Maybe you’re tired of feeling tired and you’re done with being sad. Then come join the practice of radical positivity.
Everyone’s journey through positivity is different. You’re not always going to be perfect, believe me, I am far from it. I have days where I want to do nothing but complain and vent and yell and cry. I have those days where everything just sucks and I’m anxious and I just want it all to be over. I have those days, then I wake up the next day. And on that next day, I start my practice again. I find a reason to be thankful that I woke up this morning. Then I reach out to someone special in my life just to tell them I appreciate them. I get on my computer and write a blog post about pursuing joy. Then I go to work, and put a smile on my face and say “hey y’all we ready to have a great shift??”
Radical positivity starts with little decisions throughout your day. Little decisions to not complain or to reach for gratitude or to use your voice to preach positivity in every room.
Do I feel as happy and positive today as I did on Tuesday? Truthfully, not really. Will I try and take that same energy into work tonight? Yes. And that's my little decision to be more positive today. Because I’m a firm believer that what you put into the world is exactly what you get out of it. So I choose to be radical today and only exude positivity. And I honestly believe that is what the world will give back to me.
So, how are you planning to practice radical positivity today? You just may be overwhelmed by the greatness that happens in your life as a result.