Toxic Positivity And 4 Ways To Deal With It

by Conscious Reminder

A very popular misconception is that being healthy mentally means always being happy. The phrases are familiar: keep the chin up.

But remember that you are free to keep the chin however it is. Mental health depends on the ability to sense the complete emotional range.

This includes the “negative” along with the “positive”. Always meeting adversity with a happy face may just be the wrong path.

A positive approach to life is beneficial. It helps in coping with stress, be more resilient, as well as improve immunity. But seeing everything through rose-tinted glasses is wrong.

Positivity becomes toxic when one remains toxic no matter the situation. It means having a positive mindset no matter the hardship. Even though the intentions may be good, this does not have compassion.

It can close off chances for connecting. It can be present even while talking with oneself. This includes turning away from negative feelings, and only accepting the positive.

Compulsory happiness is a toxic positivity’s other side. It implies that politeness means always smiling and that personal hardships are best kept hidden.

Keeping calm and carrying on might be our life’s motto. But we give you four reasons why we should face negative feelings, not numb them.

1. Suppressing Them Can Result In Poor Physical And Mental Health

Ignoring an uncomfortable emotion does not make it vanish. It may build up inside, and result in more stress. Suppression may appear like the least difficult method to move forward. However, it can result in them lingering longer. Only by accepting them and understanding them, can you start working on them and heal.

2. Blind Optimism Is Dangerous

Our mind and body send emotions to relay important information. Negative feelings may have been very difficult experiences, but they are our guides. By being blindly optimistic, such information gets blocked out. Optimism may give hope, but being blindly optimistic can result in problems.

3. Pain Is A Part Of Being Human

Almost all of us must have experienced uncomfortable emotions of anger, sorrow, grief, and frustration. Experiencing an emotional range is healthy. It is natural to be sad when there is loss. One cannot escape unpleasant feelings as a human. Life has both downs and ups. Negative feelings not only guide us but also encourage us to self-reflect. It can trigger a social change in us.

4. Compulsory Happiness Encourages Oppression

If everyone looks at the happy side, then troubling matters like homophobia, racism, or misogyny will never be questioned. There would be nothing motivating social justice if all of us were always happy.

Asking them to smile while being oppressed and discriminated against, we also ask them to forget their life’s injustice.

To promote mental health, dig deeper and name the negative emotion. Let them guide you, no matter if they are negative or positive.   

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