What is it that makes us look for the negatives?
I can pretty much guarantee that if we receive ten pieces of positive feedback and one criticism we will focus incessantly on that one piece.
It’s incredible but true.
Yesterday I was listening to the Tim Ferriss podcast with A. J. Jacobs who explained how this all down to anthropology.
50,000 years ago our ancestors lived their lives at risk from pretty much everything. Predators, the weather, famine and a whole range of other dangers all played a role in making the brain finely tuned to spot issues so that they could avoid them.
Whilst most of these dangers no longer persist, the survival instinct is still strong and the reason why we over analyse the negatives in our world.
To counter this, Jacobs has developed a series of practices focussing on gratitude including thanking every single person involved in producing his morning cup of coffee. From the coffe bean growers to the delivery drivers and everybody in between!
It’s an amazing philosophy backed up by science. Studies prove that showing gratitude causes others to be kinder and more gracious to the others in return. A block chain for positive emotions.
So, if you are “looking downwards” give thanks to somebody and see your future start to look more positive.
(P.S. If you want to check out the full A. J. Jacobs podcast click here – http://podcastnotes.org/2018/11/05/jacobs/)