How Focusing Only On Positive Thinking And Ignoring Everything Else Can Have A Negative Effect

How focusing only on positive thinking and ignoring everything else can have a negative effect – Oliver Burkeman

The New York Times published an interesting article on the power of positive thinking in light of motivational speaker Tony Robbin’s fiasco in San Jose where 21 people were treated for burns after walking barefoot over hot coals as part of an event called Unleash the Power Within

  • Do relentless self- affirmations, positive visualisations, cheery slogans, and efforts to stamp out any negativity truly lift an individual’s mood? Psychologists at the University of Waterloo concluded that these statements can actually make people with low self-esteem feel worse. Psychologist Gabriele Oettingen also found that visualising a successful outcome, under certain conditions, can make people less likely to achieve it
  • What about goal setting in businesses?  Research shows that by fixating too vigorously on goals in an organisation’s overall mission can be distorted in desperate efforts to meet some overly narrow target (employees are also more likely to engage in unethical behaviour to meet these goals)


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