Negativity and Positivity—Why We Need Both to be Sane

positivity  and negativity Any human being that has lived longer than their tenth birthday recognizes that life is in constant flux. From one passing moment to the next, it morphs into a new version, giving birth to new ideas, emotions and experiences.

Most of us, especially in the West, are on an unending quest for happiness. We avoid darkness, depression and anxiety like the plague, turning our face away from their unpleasantness, all while running towards the promises of positivity and happiness.

But what if all these years that we have spent killing ourselves trying to avoid any sort of pain, discomfort or sadness we were really cheating ourselves out of one of the greatest gifts we’ve been given? Is there a place for negativity in our lives? Is it possible to have too much of a good thing? What gifts, if any, do negative experiences offer us?

Can You Be Too Positive?

According to studies published in the Scientific American, positivity has its limits. In fact, when taken to the extreme, it can prevent us from having a healthy and realistic view of life. For example, the less likely we are satisfied with our current lifestyle and health, the more likely we are to take action to change it. Too much positivity, it would seem, breeds dangerous complacency. Blithely ignoring life’s dangers can cause serious consequences for our health, relationships, and finances.

The Yin and the Yang

The Yin and Yang symbol originates in Chinese philosophy, and has a great deal many interpretations. However, at a crude level, the Yin and Yang symbolize the two sides of life—darkness and light. In the physical world, we have light during the day and darkness at night. In our inward consciousness, we have emotions that move through us on a daily basis. Some of them make us feel happy, and some of them make us feel sad. But the one constant is that they never remain in one place for long.

Reconciling the Two

Positivity and Negativity dance with each other, and our consciousness is sitting right in the middle. Learning to harmonize these two polar opposites is the key to making our lives more enjoyable. When we can accept the reality that not every day will be amazing, nor will all of our days be dreadful, we can begin to appreciate the moments in between these extremes and recognize just how beautiful life is.

Without our darkest moments how would we know what it is to be happy? Without happiness, how would be able to endure the greatest trials of our lives? We need both. And we need to be thankful that we can experience either. Life is suffering. Pain. Fear. But it is also ecstasy. Laughter. Joy. You just have to be brave enough to accept both for what they are, and embrace them when the dance comes your way once again.

 

 

 

 

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