I shared a post earlier (https://os.me/short-stories/fooling-the-mind-to-positivity/) on how one could manage to assert positivity in one’s mind. Here is another method that’s worked out for me.

It starts, of course, with the basic need again for people to be happy and not sad. A friend recently shared with me his learning that happiness is the normal state of one’s mind and sadness is an aberration. This is a beautiful learning – one that could change a person’s outlook to life entirely. I intend to share some thoughts on this later. But for now, considering that all humans have an essential need and drive to be happy and positive; it’s strange, yet common that this generally does not happen and people are driven into a web of sadness, a negative outlook towards situations, people and life in general.

While my earlier post was on giving oneself reasons to be positive, this method is about telling oneself – “It could be worse”. It’s a simple mind game again.

When faced with a situation which is not as expected, one could think of manners in which the situation could be worse. In fact, when you look at it, there is nothing called the worst possible situation – there are always possibilities when things could be worse.

For example, if one has been in an accident and his or her car is all mauled up, the worse thing could be that he or she could also have been injured badly and laid up. If there is a serious injury, the worse possibility could be that the injury is permanent and incurable, in case the injury has caused permanent damage to one organ, a worse scenario would be multiple organ damage and so on.

On a professional front, say some organizational politics caused a misunderstanding with one’s seniors – a worse situation could be a pink slip with no possibility of reinstating one’s position, if one loses a job, a worse situation is that it gets clubbed with a disease which prevents one from further job hunting, and so on. The possibilities of worse situations in a given situation are endless.

People generally only see what could have been better than what they have in hand. One look at what could have been worse helps a lot in understanding the benefits, the positives of the situation. It is then possible to look ahead for better to come rather than wasting time over what was not to happen.

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Subhash Iyer

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