"Stay positive" ideology makes me sick

The ideology behind: “Keep positive”, “stay positive”, “look at the bright side, etc” makes me sick, even when i’m in a good mood.

It’s a kind of violence, suppression of all the moody people around.

I like to be kind to others, i like to help other people getting their mood and spirit back, but not just by giving them an empty phrase they can’t understand but try to live up to, and fail.


The phrase that gets to me is “love yourself”.

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it’s a bit better, i think, but still, some people are in a place where they could get quite annoyed because they are engulfed in self loathing/depressed.

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I stay positive all the time, despite the fact that I’m a failure with no prospects for the future. It’s the only way I get by without crippling depression, and it’s the only advice I know to give people. When your life is trashed by this illness, all you can do is try not to take life so seriously anymore.

What would you prefer they say to you, if they want to help?

I tend to accept that some people simply can’t be helped, and so you have to just let them suffer. But it’s painful knowing that they’re suffering and you’re not.

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I let them speak and try to understand why they are feeling sick, and then i try to lead their thoughts away speaking about something they might be interested in.

But true, i have got a friend I cant help even whatever i try. I don’t know what to do? I know he copes better on meds, but i have to respect his wish not to take meds

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To me it’s ‘positive energy’ that makes me want to break someones nose…

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I think I understand what you mean. Things like “keep positive” can be overused and non-addressing(word?) that it’s actually not that helpful. “Stay positive” may be used as a placeholder, as the person doesn’t have a good solution but still wants to show support. And, of course, the negative part of me will call it viture signalling. It could be they’re unaware of it, but don’t rule out intentional signalling.

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“Happiness is a choice!” :roll_eyes:

I don’t like the positive spin they put on recovery in mental health services.

In my experience it’s a mechanism to thin the queue for their resources

It really helps to have a positive attitude to things. How that practically helps you when your down is seriously a moot point but still. I subscribe to a half glass full for sure.

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Yeah @bluebutterfly, that can be annoying.

I prefer more personal responses such as, “you’re doing well,” or, “well done,” or, “you’re doing well in a tough situation.” I give this advice out a lot & it seems it’s of value to those who receive it…but when I give it out it costs me energy, empathy and so on so I expect to receive it in return. When I don’t (I don’t, like, ever) I feel annoyed & short-changed.

For what it’s worth @bluebutterfly, you’re doing well. You’re doing well in a tough situation.

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Stay positive:

  1. Even though you are not allowed to drive.
  2. Even though a doctor suggested you work “to pay for the meds”
  3. Even though a doctor told you the voices will never completely go away meds or no meds
  4. Even though you are 40 and years of volunteer work (surprise, surprise) has not allowed you to leave your Mother’s house or have a serious social life.
  5. Even though you are 50, living in a group home, have diabetes, and are beginning to lose your cognitive function, and have partial incontinence.
  6. At least I have a roof over my head in the neighborhood I lived in when I was 10. Yes the house is at least 40 years old.
  7. But there is one thing I “stay positive” about. I will not live forever.

Jon Ronson debunking positive thinking.

Thank you so much,Flutterby, i was grumpy yesterday, today the sun i shining in Copenhagen. Holiday for the next six days, and dangerously close to positive thinking :slight_smile: .

Good advice!

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