Toxic Positivity and Manifestation Nonsense

“Wow that’s like the opposite of all that manifesting stuff I hear about.”

This is what a client said in a session the other day. I usually keep my personal opinions to myself during sessions, because I’m not there to teach my philosophies– it’s more about helping the client to discover THEIR OWN philosophies.

But I couldn’t help myself at that moment…

“That’s because that manifesting stuff is a bunch of BS!”

I’m not suggesting that getting crystal clear on what you want isn’t helpful. It's key.

But there’s a dangerous narrative in the manifesting world that claims you can just “think positively” and wait for all of your dreams to come true.

In this session, my client realized that her emotion of excitement (a positive emotion) was actually getting in the way of her success.

The idea that all you need to do is think positive thoughts and your dreams will come true crumbles pretty quickly when you realize that positive emotions aren’t always useful.

Sometimes they can lead to setting unrealistically high expectations of yourself, losing focus, and consequently damaging your confidence.

Sometimes you need to take a step back and use those positive emotions more effectively, so that your optimism is based on a solid dose of reality. Positive emotions aren’t “good” and negative emotions aren’t “bad”, they are just chemical reactions that your brain produces. "Good" or "bad" are judgements. Stories.

So instead of fantasizing your way to feeling good, and hoping that will be enough to bring the results you want. A more helpful process might be to learn to take all emotions, both positive and negative, for what they are and learn more about how you can use each of them effectively so that they don’t adversely impact your daily outcomes without you even realizing.

Feel the fear.

Feel the sadness.

Feel the doubt.

Feel the excitement.

Feel the pleasure.

And take an objective look at where each is coming from, and what each is having you believe. Examining the stories that we attach to feelings helps us separate ourselves from our internal dialogue, which allows us to make clearer decisions, and take more deliberate action towards our goals.


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