18 hours ago
Mental health realization:
So. I've been really turned off by "positivity culture." I used to be that. That...person who always tries to stay positive no matter what. The reason I did that was actually for the benefit of other people, not myself. I had a rough time toward the end of high school because people said I was "so negative all the time." I had difficulty making friends in my 20s...up until I just decided to only acknowledge positive things. For some people, that is really important! If that brings you joy, then that brings you joy! But for me...I just constantly had this "proof" that no one was interested in me if I was sad. Or depressed. And I did not reach out when I needed people. Ever. The few times I did...people ended up using my vulnerability to their advantage. Or, and this is is nearly a direct quote, they would tell me, "Just stop being sad. This isn't you. I want happy Kristine back." I spent a long time feeling like my whole self would never be safe with anyone other than myself. That, if I was around other people, I had to be positive. I didn't want to ever, EVER be the negativity that people always talked about "cutting out of their lives." So. We can see how positivity culture had an ironically negative effect on me & my life. Lol.
On the flip side of that token, I don't WANT to be negative! Ugh! No body WANTS that, ffs. Obviously, I WANT to be HAPPY. I mean, c'mon. So. How to I acknowledge the negative & maintain the positive. I figured out this morning while journaling. It's annoyingly obvious... Gratitude. Gratitude culture! It is NOT about maintaining positivity! Positivity is NOT a destination! It is a SIDE EFFECT of GRATITUDE! Gratitude is the thing to maintain! It allows space for the negative parts of us, but no matter how bad it feels, expressing gratitude for what you have is the good part. Gratitude also keeps positivity from becoming judgemental. It keeps positivity from becoming a sort of superiority complex. Gratitude keeps you from cutting friends out of your life because they are depressed.
Gratitude is my new habit.