There is no neutral point in life. It is either positive or negative. If we fail to choose positivity automatically, we become negative and gradually lose all the positive energy. However, if we choose the positive, we will win everything. The choice is ours.
Since 1999, I have been working as an appreciative inquiry practitioner and applying this approach and various strengths-based approaches in my personal and professional lives. So, I firmly believe in positivity. My practice and learnings have taught me that positivity can be discovered in any adverse situation if we learn to inquire about it. I have experienced lots of ups and downs in my life and appreciative inquiry and other strengths-based approaches have become my charioteer during my pain and problems.
Sociologically, we can say there are several worlds in a universe. The world of the poor is entirely different from the world of the rich. The world of artists is completely different from the world of porters and farmers. We all share our experiences and desires based on our own world. However, there is one common world of a pandemic for all after the COVID-19. This has united us to search for a way out of this terrible unrest. All the media and governments, students and teachers, doctors/nurses and patients and even common people are talking about COVID-19 and its preventive and curative methods.
While many are addressing this scenario in a positive way, some are spreading negativity and creating a state of panic. Especially, media headlines and news are terribly explaining its negative aspects only and informing the whole world only about the devastation it has caused. Along with the global pandemic, global infodemic is at play. Many media houses are misrepresenting and misportraying this COVID scenario. As it is the negative news that generally sells, the media houses and online portals are using this opportunity to earn a lot of money by sharing headlines and negative news alone. The media has been intentionally hiding the positive aspects of the world. All the positive activities going on every day are either shadowed or ignored. The media users are bound to listen, watch or read the most negative and devastating aspects of COVID-19.
Due to the exaggeration of negative aspects and ignorance, instead of many positive aspects in our daily life, frustration, hopelessness, irritation, annoyance, dysfunction etc have been growing in our society. And this can be minimized and retaliated by focusing on the most positive aspect of the corona-created consequences, treatment, recovery ratio and preventive methods and other natural phenomena like daily sunrise, environment freshness, emerging new health behavior, social connectedness, political accountability etc. In times of crises like this, positivity, love and support need to be spread among the people. People need to stand with those who are infected and create a homely and caring environment for those people. It is through combined efforts like these that we can ultimately win this pandemic. If misinformation persists then hatred will grow, people will grow skeptical and then society will start to boycott the infected and frontline workers. The power of positivity and support will help us tackle any kind of crisis.
We have a special mechanism of thinking. To change the thinking paradigm, we must understand the thought formation process. The function of the conscious and subconscious mind needs to be understood. The conscious mind is the gateway and it considers the direct events. However, the subconscious mind is the powerhouse and stores all the information and sends it through the conscious mind. Whatever we store in the subconscious mind eventually becomes our habit. If we are constantly exposed to negative things, negative ideas and images are ultimately stored in our subconscious mind and our personality eventually becomes negative.
But if we talk about creative and positive stuff, positive images and positive stories are stored in our subconscious mind and our behavior and life become positive. The positive personality always talks about the connection, collaboration, cooperation, confidence and we need all these things to fight against this terrible pandemic. Rather than searching for the solution from the outside, it is far better to initiate to transform the internal focuses that can help us to search for positivity in this adversity. One needs to understand that positive thinking always follows the positive energy and makes people healthy and happy. However, negative thinking always follows the negative energy and makes people hopeless, broken, mistrusting, worthless and frustrated. Here the choice is ours. The kind of words we choose in our daily lives shape our realities. What do you want? Positive realities or negative realities? The choice is yours. I strongly recommend choosing positive realities by choosing positive words and actions. This is simple and easy. Just A change in our focus and priorities can result in miracles in our daily lives. Don’t you want to get such miracles and an easy life?
Remember, according to Albert Einstein, “We can easily forget a child who is afraid of light but the real tragedy is that when a man is afraid of light.” No doctors, nurses, mentors and leaders can save us from being negative. It is within us to decide and implement what we want. If we focus on positivity, positivity will grow otherwise vice versa. There is no neutral point in life. It is either positive or negative. If we fail to choose positivity automatically, we become negative and gradually lose all the positive energy. However, if we choose the positive, we will win everything. The choice is ours. So, we need to learn to appreciate ourselves rather than blaming others.
(The author is Vice-chairperson of the City Planning Commission, Pokhara Metropolitan City.)