Skip links

How the Cult of Positivity is turning us against each other

Why are we so reluctant to look a fellow human being in the eye and say “I’m hurting”?

Whether I’m struggling with mental or physical illness, with a failing spiritual life, or with a tough set of life circumstances of any sort, it’s stupidly hard for me to just admit that I’m suffering. If you ask me how I’m doing, I’ve noticed that my instinct is always to hide the fact that I’m not doing well.

I started paying attention, and noticed that a lot of people do the same thing. Ask how somebody is doing, and you’ll either get “I’m fine,” or “It’s been a hard day, but … it could be worse,” or “… but I’m hanging in there,” or “… but it’s not so bad.” If a person acknowledges the suffering at all, they immediately tend to backtrack, and try to minimize it.

Why are we so reluctant to look a fellow human being in the eye and say “I’m hurting”? Part of it has to do with what I’m starting to refer to as “the Cult of Positivity.” Now, as an antidote to complaining, or self-pity, a healthy dose of looking on the bright side might be just what we need.

Read more at Aleteia.org…

Share with Friends: