Be Positive is the fourth of the Five Golden Rules for Effective ActionTogether with Live Integrity it completes the action attitudes. By being positive you set the stage for good things to happen.

What it means to be positive

Being positive includes how you start your day, how you react to changes, and what you draw out of anything that has happened:

  • anticipate greatness. Start the day with the feeling that something good is about to happen.
  • react well-disposed to anything and anyone. Be open to life.
  • conclude your day on a good note. Make the good things stick.

Remove negativity from your thoughts. Don’t beat yourself up for mistakes, learn from them. Never think negative thoughts like

“Why does this always happen to me?”
“I can’t do it!”
“I knew, I will mess it up.”
“If I fail now, I will never make it.”

Thoughts like these can turn into self-fulfilling prophecies. You basically already convinced yourself of being inadequate. Thus, you pose your own biggest enemy who you need to overcome to succeed. Instead picture how happy you will be when you reach your goal and think positive thoughts like:

“If it was easy it wouldn’t be worth trying.”
“I will succeed were others failed”
“I can do it!”
“I am unstoppable!”

These thoughts may sound cheesy to you but are really powerful. Just hold on for a second and close your eyes. Picture a bullet train; how it starts in the train station and slowly picks up speed. It gets faster and faster, trees start to fly by and blend in with the surroundings in one big motion blur until everything is just speed and nothing else. Picture that you are this bullet train. Nothing can stop you. You are unstoppable!

Doubt is good, it protects us from being unreasonable, but only to a certain degree. By being in balance with ourselves and dealing with our shortcomings ahead of time (Rule 1: Know Your Starting Point) in an honest manner (Rule 3: Live Integrity) we can set reasonable goals (Rule 2: Know Your Goal).  And thus, we can be positive about what we can and will achieve.


Be PositiveDealing with Negativity

Life is not all puppies and butterflies. Bad things happen as well as good things. We regularly experience criticism but also encouragement. Unfortunately, we are conditioned to remember negative events rather than the positive ones (The Brain’s Negative Bias) which will easily make us believe all is negative even if the bad things or bad comments are in the minority.

Criticism can be quite helpful if it is constructive and well-intentioned. Sadly, that is not the kind of criticism we experience most of the time. It certainly requires a lot of discipline not to dwell too much on all the negativity we may experience from others. But  because our brains are predisposed to stick with negative experiences we need to make the active effort to value anything positive that happens to us. After each experience we can think about the bad, but immediately should also acknowledge the good to make that stick as the last thought.

We need to make the active effort to remove negativity from our lives.

That does not mean we should try to avoid everyone who may criticize us or run away from situations that may have a negative outcome. Quite the contrary. By approaching all negativity head-on with a positive attitude, negativity will have less meaning to us and no longer weigh us down when we make the positive stick. Over time we will get used to thinking and acting positive.

We will only be able to see new opportunities if we are open to let them find us.


To Be Positive means to acknowledge the bad, but be open for the good things that can and will happen to us.

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