“Where you focus your attention is what you will experience.” It may seem like a simple statement, but it has profound implication to our experience of life.
With the 24-hour news cycle fixated on the pandemic and all the implications socially, economically and medically, it’s easy to get swamped by the “bad news” presented by the media. One antidote is to foster practices that help harvest and savour positive emotions.
This idea is derived from current neuroscience research that recognises that positive experiences are like Teflon- they slip away. Where as negative emotions are like Velcro- they stick around.
Further more, research by Fredrickson suggests that experiencing positive emotions in a 3-to-1 ratio to negative emotions helps people experience a state of mind that can; “enhance your relationships, improve your health, relieve depression, and broaden your mind.”
Our brains are wired to focus on the negative aspects of life and these are the ones we remember easily. This is our survival mechanism at play and is part of the brain’s protective make-up. After all, if we were unable to identify a threat, our ancestors would not have been naturally selected.
On the other hand, celebrating the good things in life, the events, relationships, the wow and ah-ha moments contribute to the joy of living and it is good to train ourselves to hold onto these experiences.
Here are three practices that I am currently experimenting with to facilitate connecting with the good.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.