Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Are you positive that you're negative?

Having a positive outlook on life is awesome.

Life is awesome, so it makes perfect sense to be enthusiastic about it.

Those of us who enjoy life to the fullest attract like-minded people, generate success and are happy, finding the positives in any situation with others. These people are ace. They are what God was aiming for when he created people, if you think that way, and if you don't, then it is probably part of evolution and a survival of the fittest, with positive people thriving and prospering.

I always considered myself to be one of this group. The positives. Those who saw the good in everything and gave things due consideration, assuming the best. I think I tried to push this position by being a funny guy. What better way to be a positive influence on others than by making them smile. I have been this way since primary school.

Pulling silly faces, to telling jokes, to learning the fine (ha) art of double entendres, listening to language to find the subtle cleverness in words, being interested in my friends enough so that I learned what tickled their fancies, which sounds sexier than I mean.

Perhaps at times it feels that my mode of being amusing is stuck in the 'juvenile' gear. I still laugh at the word boobs, I point at poodles wearing coats when I'm on my own in the car and I love nothing better than a good knob joke (the joke is good, not the knob). See, even there, I go for the try and be funny comment.

But, outward positive isn't always inward positive.

I'm smiling just thinking about birdy num num
Peter Sellers is one of my favourite comedic actors. Funny every time, even when the film was awful. He had an endearing persona in some of his films, particularly The Party. A kind of innocence that people warm to, but still very funny. Yet, as a man, he was, by all accounts, a prick. Miserable, self-centred, egotistical, and not particularly pleasant to his children.

A positive influence to many, but not to himself.

Another, Tommy Cooper, was the same.

I'm on a whiskey diet. I've lost three days already. 
Being a positive influence or making people smile is not the end of the journey. In fact, it may just be looking out the window as you drive and not really looking straight ahead.

The other thing I have are opinions.

And the way I often present these opinions is as absolutes.

They are not, they are opinions.

I do say I am open to having my mind changed on topics, I may be part way there on a couple of significant ones at present in fact, but do I present this when talking to people? Do they hear me say it but not see me do it?

When I offer up my opinion on something, am I telling or am I asking? Does it encourage further discussion or commentary? I'm not sure it does.

If I hear an opinion expressed that I don't agree with, I will reply, giving my version or thoughts.

Why? What makes my belief important? What makes it important enough that I felt the need to push it on to someone else? Can't I just hear their opinion without needing to get involved?

Even if I don't comment, am I still thinking it? "They're wrong!"?

It's judgemental and unnecessary.

I care what other people believe, I am genuinely interested in their thoughts on topics, but I take it too far. I'm not trying to judge, but it's clear that I am. 

I asked a vegetarian once why they were and they immediately got their back up, like I was questioning their lifestyle choice. They told me it was for a few reasons, those being they liked animals and thought it was healthier.

The reason I asked was because they were smoking.

I was judging them.


It's a habit you get into. You see people and assess, criticise, run a commentary.

Who am I or anyone else to do that?

A criminal sure, they suck (if guilty), but just Joe and Jenny Bloggs? A friend? A relative? A fellow passenger on the train?

My negativity has crept up on me. I didn't know I was doing it, but I do now.

I guess my buffer zone has always been my witty repartee, but I see how my tone, phrasing, even manner has rubbed people the wrong way.

If this has happened to you or you have felt even a little bit of it, I apologise unconditionally.

My road to positivity has begun and I kind of hope my friends are coming with me.

Hmm, might need some sunglasses

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