This is the top danger to me, the idea that no matter what kind of struggle we have in life, it’s our own fault:
“While a positive attitude can sometimes and in certain situations help one to get over the hump, “toxic positivity,” the unyielding requirement for positivity at all times, with its false promises of curative powers, is a dangerous mindset and an unhelpful demand to impose on someone.
It can also result in victim blaming: “Oh you didn’t succeed? If only you were more positive.””
Yes, indeed, if only you were more positive. Or in other instances:
- If only you worked out more
- If only you went outside more
- If only you ate better
- If only you had a pet
And on and on. No matter the struggle, there will always be someone there to tell you what you’re doing wrong to explain why you aren’t getting better.
What if we simply understand that life is hard? Anxiety and depression are hard. Living in poverty is hard. Living with bipolar or chronic illnesses is hard. Going outside isn’t always going to fix that. Being positive isn’t going to fix it; some days will just be hard and miserable.
You’re allowed to be miserable. You’re allowed to suffer, be in pain, and not feel positive all the time. So sure, go outside, exercise, and eat healthier if you want, but don’t assume those actions will solve everyone’s problems. That’s not the way this works.
That’s not the way any of this works.
Go read the whole thing and learn about embracing your grievances.