Mackay: A business practice with no negatives: Positive thinking

  • Article by: HARVEY MACKAY
  • Updated: January 20, 2013 - 6:47 PM
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ebenezerJan. 21, 1312:08 AM

I believe things are changing, Harvey.

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ebenezerJan. 21, 1312:17 AM

Sorry, my friend. Your claims for positive thinking are coming under challenge: "Having been in the working world for some four decades, I’ve noticed this tendency to adopt an “everything is awesome” attitude. It began sometime in the 80’s, I think, when we stopped calling things “problems” and started calling them “issues.” Fast-forward to today, to a generation of workers who grew up being told that their every thought, every gesture, every creation was brilliant. Every kid makes the team, and every kid gets a trophy. Everybody wins. Except they don’t. The problem with all this positivity is that it leads to some seriously negative outcomes. If you can’t stand the slightest bit of criticism or any degree of failure, these are the potential results. 1. Shallowness 2. Mediocrity 3. Laziness 4. Danger 5. Blind-sidings 6. Isolation 7. Lack of recognition 8. Inauthenticity 9. Meanness 10. Cheapness 11. Annoyance 12. A bad legacy Spend your life deciding everything is hunky-dory and that all efforts, no matter how lame, get a prize, and that’s what you’ll teach your children. We need to decide that critical thinking is a good thing, in order to find out what’s not working so well and to make it better. If I’m harshin’ yer buzz, I’m sorry. For a positively awesome book on the problem with positive thinking, read "Brightsided" by Barbara Ehrenreich."---Quoted from an article by Kim Phillips. Kim's, Barbara's and other new research articles far more accurately reflect the practical experience I have noted in my daily business experience and board sojourns, contrary to your assertions otherwise. I might also add, the more money the practitioner of "positive thinking" promotion for employees has, the greater the propensity to assert the philosophy as a greater goal. Like greater than fair wages, good benefits, strong ethics, sharing profitability, and a willingness to stand up for what is right.

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