Mental Health Monday: How Toxic Positivity Damaged My Mental Health

Not my image!

While positive thinking is not a bad thing, it can be detrimental to your mental health. Especially if you force yourself to constantly think positive thoughts.

VeryWellMind.com describes toxic positive as such, “Toxic positivity is the belief that no matter how dire or difficult a situation is, people should maintain a positive mindset. It’s a “good vibes only” approach to life.”

2015 was a traumatic year for me. I lost my grandmother to cancer, and my partner at the time abruptly ended our relationship via text.
I felt that I needed to ignore how I was feeling. I felt as if I needed to push through it and “live my best life”. A terrible idea in hindsight.

I found myself being drawn to spirituality, as well as, some new-age practises. I still follow things such as these, but I saw the detrimental aspects of them. People tend to show the best parts of their lives, not the struggles.

I would come across phrases such as “happiness is a choice” and “choose positivity”. These phrases sound great, but they can’t be implemented. You can choose to look for the good in a situation, but you can’t outright choose your emotions.

I was convinced that I couldn’t have a good life, unless I changed my obviously struggling mindset. I was trying to suppress what I was feeling, and denying myself the opportunity to grieve.

By denying how you actually feel, you will cause yourself extra, and unnecessary pain. I spent 6 months of my life crying, drinking and doing anything I could to avoid accepting the reality of the situation.

There are things that positive thinking and “good vibes” cannot fix. If anything, they are merely a bandaid that barely covers the wound.

There’s no shame in needing to express your feelings. It’s healthy to do so!


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