How do you stay positive with so much negativity in the news? I have always been fascinated with elections. This election, not so much! I am torn between wanting to be involved in the conversation and feeling overwhelmed by the daily verbal and visual assault. Words Create Worlds. How do we teach this to our children when those who want to represent us don’t understand the value of their words?
The candidates may believe that it is political rhetoric and fitting for their cause, but so many people are just fed up with the sound of election season. Housing, jobs, and healthcare all vital to people, and should not be sound-bites to upset people and cause fear. A good, lively discussion or debate where we hear messages of what is possible would be such a relief. The anger that is being fueled about these important issues is so opposite of what we practice in our daily lives. How does a good citizen vote when they are turning away from the message. This is my first election year in Nevada and the race for the Senate is pretty messy. In Nevada, you can vote none of the above. What happens if the majority of people voting vote that way? No need to send me a note telling me how important my civic responsibility is – I learned that early from my parents.
So, how do you stay positive? First, how do we reframe the information? How do we select the messages we hear? Barbara Frederickson from the University of North Carolina has research to support that our positive emotions can lead to better health and increase our resilience to adversity. This research is that a 3 to 1 ratio of positive to negative thoughts is the healthy balance that we need to see possibilities and to achieve more. This practice of Appreciative Inquiry, while not about the positive, helps me keep myself on that balance, at that healthy tipping point of positive to negative emotions. But, it sometimes takes more effort to maintain that balance. I turn on music, read a book, talk to people who are doing terrific work, some of whom are newly certified AI Facilitators like those listed below. Please read on to find out more about their stories of success.