How do we enjoy ourselves when we’re predisposed to be negative, a product of our evolution? Negativity and discriminating between what helped or hurt protected us from harm. Our brains were anxious so we’d survive. What helped us then harms us now. That “fight or flight” response causes undue, unhealthy stress. We diminish our quality of life. We dampen our joy and the joy of others. It’s so unnecessary.
Dr. Rick Hanson, neuroscientist, says: We must learn to take in the good. We must let positive events become positive experiences for us. How? Soak in the good, spend time enjoying it for 10-20-30-60 seconds, longer. Burn in the positive intentionally, as we do the negative reflexively. Talk about things that go right. Write them down and focus on them. Don’t concentrate on what went wrong and don’t talk about the negative so much! Reinforce your positive experiences. It improves your quality of life. It improves the lives of those around you. Just like at Thanksgiving, let’s “take in the good” all year round!