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Why you don’t have to always ‘Stay Positive’


“keep keeping it pos!” – It’s a phrase I’ve been saying a lot lately. And we hear others say “we have to be positive” or “we have to stay positive” and whilst I fully appreciate it’s said in a well meaning way and I also do it to try to cheer people up, I’ve realised it’s not always very helpful advice. It’s like telling someone to ‘not worry’. Or like saying ‘don’t think about a pink elephant with polka dots’…(see, you did, didn’t you!)

It’s OK to experience feelings of upset, sadness, worry or frustration. It’s OK to have temporary moments of feeling low or down. It’s OK to experience moments of loneliness during these times of isolation.

What Simone and I have found very helpful to learn and we teach it and live it at Incognito HQ and with our performers, is that all feelings states come from our thinking ABOUT something, someone, a circumstance or a ‘thing’.

And because our thinking is transient – not fixed in stone or permanent – it means that upset, worry or frustrated feeling will pass, when I get some new, fresh thinking. And that’s available to us all, in any moment. So I don’t have to worry about my feelings of worry! It’ll pass by, if I don’t pay it much attention or don’t fixate on it. Like when you have a cut, it only heals if you don’t pick at the scab!

Do you remember a time when you were super hungry and then got stuck into a piece of work and completely forgot about your hunger, only to remember a few hours later that you were supposed to be hungry! That’s because you had a thought, which created a feeling of hunger. When your thoughts moved to something else – the work – the hungry feeling left too. Until you had the thought back again…then the hunger appeared along with it. Thought/feeling are two sides of the same coin. You can’t have one without the other.

All feelings states are temporary. That’s good to know. BOOM!

Stay healthy, stay connected and keep keeping it pos!

Geoff Sewell (CEO)

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