When the Pollyanna character was introduced into the American Culture, she was THE personification of optimism during the Great Depression. With a little sophistication and perhaps cynicism of the 60’s, the name “Pollyanna” became synonymous with the expressions “out of touch with reality” and “denial.” The metaphor of rose-colored glasses, however, isn’t a denial of reality. Rather, it is a desire to see the good in a bad situation…and move on. In a time of the “Entitlement Generation” (which includes practically all Americans), the norm has become to bitch, moan and whine about everything, thus claiming victimization—garnering sympathy (more likely apathy) from others. So where is Pollyanna in all of this? Great question!
Today as the great recession continues, it’s time to put on the rose-colored glasses. Focusing on the negativity only draws more negativity to you. As the expression goes, “what you think about expands.” When you hear people bitching what you are really hearing is grieving. And while grieving is normal, and even healthy a times, prolonged grieving is not normal and it is certainly not healthy. Research shows that people who are pessimistic about life have a suppressed immune system, whereas those who practice optimism have a healthy immune system. Rose-colored glasses are a metaphor for optimism, something which appears in short supply today, but very much needed.
Stress Tip for the Day:
If you wear rose-colored glasses, keep em on. But if you regularly see the glass as half empty (I am mixing metaphors here, but stay with the concept) it’s time to change your eyeglass prescription, and eyeglasses. Today, please make an effort to look for the good in things as well as people. Rather than playing the devil’s advocate, today play the “angel’s advocate.” Look for the good it everything. Once you find the good in something or someone (and there is always good in everything, every situation and everyone) send love from your heart as an expression of gratitude.
Links, Books and Movies Worth Noting:
Martin Seligman has created a branch of modern psychology called Positive Psychology. Here is a link based on his book, Learned Optimism.
Quote for the Day:
“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement; nothing can be done without hope.” — Helen Keller
“Optimist: Someone who figures that taking a step backward after taking a step forward is not a disaster, it’s a cha-cha.” —Robert Brault
Photo for the Day:
While I normally like to use my own photographs, I found this (free) image on the Internet and just new it was perfect for this blog entry. Enjoy!
Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 10 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (7e) and the forthcoming, A Beautiful World: The Earth Song Journals. He can be reached through his website: www.brianlukeseaward.net
© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.