Negativity is almost always more powerful and potent than the positive.
For example, I have walked out of church countless Sundays after preaching and would have dozens of people be kind enough to express their appreciation of my efforts. But the conversation I remembered was that one negative remark.
In high school there was a large commons area that I walked across every day. I must have made that trip hundreds (may thousands) of times but the one time I remember is when my shoe caught on the carpet and I stumbled and almost fell.
We all do this and the pain and embarrassment of those negative events can make us timid and cowardly.
The obvious truth is, you and I are flawed and have many weaknesses, and have (and will) fail many times. And…there are always people (and our own mind) ready to point out that obvious truth!
People are seldom overly optimistic or too hopeful. There is always a negative person or thought waiting in the wings to bring the optimistic and hopeful back down the earth.
So, here’s the great task of life, if you hope to succeed: You must learn to break the strong downward pull of the negative in your life. And the good news is that I have a solution for you. It is wrapped up in two little words: “Yes, but…”
The truth is, there really are negative potentials in life.
If you leave your house today and drive somewhere, there is a real chance someone will drive into you and hurt you… (and gasp!!!) … you could even get killed.
If you invest in the stock market you can be assured that the value of your portfolio will go down sometime in your future due to a recession and big market downswing—guaranteed.
If you speak it is certain that eventually you will stick your foot in your mouth, if you try something you will fail, if you open up and be vulnerable someone will laugh, if offer your coat someone will take your shirt too. You can count on these sorts of things happening.
The point is—negative thoughts, fears, and reasoning is powerful because they are often grounded in reality.
But (there’s that word), don’t forget the two little powerful words: “Yes, but…”
Mr. Fear says, “If you get out in that crazy traffic you might have a wreak!” You reply, “Yes but, millions of commuters arrive safely to their destination every day. I will drive safely and not be ruled by fear.”
Ms. Pessimistic says, “If you put your money in the stock market your stock will almost certainly go down in value.” You reply, “Yes, but over the long term, the stock market gives the best rate of return over any other investment; I will not be ruled by the moment, I will take the long view.”
Mr. Cynic points out that if you try that you will almost certainly fail, but you reply, “Yes, but I will learn and thus increase my chance of eventually succeeding.
Bottom line, Negativity, Pessimism, Defeatist, and their other bed-fellows are a pretty tough gang to deal with. They are always nipping at your heels, but you do have an answer to everyone of their observations and that answer always starts with, “Yes but…”
The ONE THING for today: Go for it today! Take risk, try something new, dare to dream and dream big. And when Mr. Fear and the gang point out obvious reasons why it won’t work, reply by saying, “Yes, but…”