Each week when I am tasked with coming up with one or two opinion article topics, most of the topics that comes to mind are — not necessarily negative — but can revolve around negative things going on in the world. While I sat at my desk trying to think of a positive article topic, or one that at least didn’t revolve around the struggles of being a student — let’s just say it took a really long time and I came up with nothing. I’m not saying there isn’t anything positive to talk about in regards to the world we’re living in, or that there is nothing good to point out, but it does appear that we lack a lot of positivity in our day to day lives.
When I run into people in the halls at the university who I haven’t seen for a while, a lot of times their happiness comes off as fake. That is nothing against their personalities or who they are, it just sounds like they’re putting on a good attitude when really they couldn’t be more stressed out. Positivity and happiness feels extremely unusual when you hear it or see it, because we aren’t used to it anymore.
So, let’s talk about the power of positivity.
I am someone who loves to use metaphors to get my point across. Let’s say you have a brand new car, and you get warned that making that investment is a huge commitment, because with it comes the possibility of having to pay repair costs, getting in an accident and the car not being able to run anymore, and so on. Now let’s pretend that car is a human being, a friend, family member, anything.
When it comes to caring for people, the less we care for them when things are good, the more we run the risk of something going terribly wrong. In my own life, I coach youth hockey, and oftentimes I have players who lack confidence in not just the sport but in other aspects of life. Confidence isn’t naturally low, I don’t think. Confidence has to be shattered first — so why do we shatter people’s confidence? Why don’t we work on building people up rather than down and then being tasked or tasking someone else with trying to rebuild something so vital to day to day success.
The way I see it, there are two stems of positivity. There’s the natural optimism and cheerfulness for the sake of being happy and, well, positive. Those people who everytime you see them are greeting you with a smile, genuinely care how your day is going, and who sincerely want good things for other people in their life.
Then there’s the reactionary positivity which steers from negativity. No one’s life will ever be blissful all the way through, and it is important for us to learn that when negative things do go on in our lives and in others, we have to find the silver lining and positive outlook to help us get through those situations.
For your friends who may need a little more than positive talk to brighten up their days, a funny video on Facebook or Twitter usually does the trick. Today I was scrolling through my feed (not while writing this article, of course) and found a video of a little girl who was trying to get her Alexa Speaker to play the “Baby Shark” song. It was classic. It was hilarious. I am still laughing at it. It’s a small gesture to send a funny video to your friends, but gratitude, and giving kindness to other people, boosts your quality of life as well. It’s a rewarding feeling to brighten someone’s day. Remember that there is immense power in positivity.