Life & Work

Don't Force Positivity! Here's Why

Don't Force Positivity! Here's Why, positivity, feelings, feeling good, forcing positive feelings

Growing up, when you were sad or angry, you were taught to overcome that feeling with happiness or positivity. As you got older, this worked well for you until it didn't, and you felt yourself get unhappy for long periods of time without knowing why.  We weren't taught to deep dive into our feelings, so we've felt the need to apologize or repress those especially negative ones. Ever wonder why things don't change no matter how hard you try to mask certain feelings with a forced positivity? Read on!

Don't Force Positivity! Here's Why

Don't Force Positivity! Here's Why, positivity, feelings, feeling good, forcing positive feelings

Here's the thing: the key to happiness isn't to pretend to be happy all the time. I get it, your attitude has a lot to do with what goes on in our lives. If we feel bad, then those bad feelings will continue. Many of us think that covering up our feelings with positivity is the way to go, but that isn't exactly the case.

In her new book, “Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change and Thrive in Work and Life,” Harvard Medical School professor and psychologist Susan David challenges ways of handling emotion. She writes that's that feelings of sadness, anger, or grief show us what's actually important to us. In an interview with Huffington Post, David claims "We don’t feel sad or guilty about stuff we don’t care about. If we push these emotions away, we are choosing not to learn about ourselves. We are choosing to ignore our values and what is important to us."

I can see David's point. When we push our emotions away, they come back no matter how hard you try, but when you deal with your problem head on you're able to analyze and understand why you're feeling the way that you do so you're better capable of dealing with your negative emotions in the long run. David believes in the concept of "showing up" to your emotions. It basically means that you face them head on rather than repress them with happier feelings.

Interested? Shop Susan David's book here:

Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change and Thrive in Work and Life, SHOP.COM, $20.31

Are you able to "show up" to your emotions? Don't force positivity, people! Let me know hat you think in the comments section or tweet me @lorenridinger.