Can Positivity be Toxic?

“When you create tunnel vision for positivity you are not allowing yourself to face your reality.”

Evelyn Espinoza

The simple answer is — YES!

The more complex answer– only if you allow it.

You see, positivity can be toxic if you deny yourself your other emotions. When you create tunnel vision for positivity you are not allowing yourself to face your reality. 

As humans we experience many emotions in just one hour, now imagine in a day. To focus on just positivity can prove to be more harmful than helpful, especially if there are unpleasant situations in your life. The thing about positivity is that no matter how much you focus on it, it is not foolproof. You will still experience pain, anger, sadness and so on. The very emotions that make us human. 

When we try to bury these uncomfortable feelings all we are doing is denying ourselves of our true emotions and keeping ourselves from healing. We start to ignore the problems on hand.

“I was hurting myself more by trying to keep this happy, positive facade than if I had just accepted my truth and sought help.”

Evelyn Espinoza

I remember a time when I was in the middle of so many medical testings and I was beginning to feel worn down. I was exhausted and felt like I was not any closer to finding out answers. I felt that I was being forced to accept what my body was doing on a daily basis. I was scared and felt like so much had been taken from me. One night I just had it. I was explaining to Eric what I was feeling and I just started to bawl. I couldn’t contain my tears. I was holding onto so much fear that it was literally smothering me. By expressing my emotions I was able to accept comfort and empty my cup even if just a little bit. I was hurting myself more by trying to keep this happy, positive facade than if I had just accepted my truth and sought help.

 I understood the importance of the silver lining. So, I stayed hopeful and I learned to appreciate the good days. My hope, the support of Eric and many prayers is what helped me forward. Emotions help us express what we are going through. In a way they are not good or bad. They are there to help us learn and feel our way through life. To experience vulnerability, humility, love, sadness and even anger.   

I totally see the reasons why you might want to focus on a positive outlook. There are so many  wonderful benefits of building a positive perspective. Like being able to: push through difficult circumstances, feeling happier & lighter, not letting small problems get to you, looking younger, less negative thoughts and overall feeling better about yourself. Life is not just about the good things, it is also about all the hard parts. The parts that make us feel sad, angry, worried, depressed, scared and anxious. These types of emotions help us grow, learn and overcome. Just like the good ones help us appreciate and love our life. Without the difficult situations we wouldn’t know what joy in our life looked like.

So, how exactly do we prevent a toxic positive perspective? 

Well is it simple enough but, I wouldn’t say easy. 

You have got to be honest with yourself.

When you don’t ride and hide from your emotions you are able to communicate with them. You can feel the depth of what you are experiencing–allowing you to understand what you are feeling. Which helps you bring clarity and in some circumstances answers. 

When we focus so much on producing a positive mindset it is from a place of fear and avoidance. You are not allowing yourself to feel what you are trying so hard to bury. This is when you sit down and start asking some tough questions and this only works when you are honest with yourself. 

  1. Why do I feel like this?
  2. What brought this on?
  3. Does this happen often?
  4. What can I do to solve this problem?
  5. Do I need outside help or support?

These kinds of questions will help you move forward and take baby steps towards a more positive perspective. 

Positivity takes mental, emotional and spiritual work. It takes time to develop and in all truth no one is 100% positive at all times. It’s just not possible. We are flawed but that is no excuse for not trying. That is all any of us can do. 

We can create the kind of lifestyle and mentality we want through consistency, patience and hard work. Nothing is ever impossible and if it seems like it is–it’s because there are other options waiting to be used. 

In what aspect of your life do you want to be more positive?

Don’t forget to follow. 

Until next time, 

Evelyn.