Weather Induced Positivity
Finally, there is warm weather in Massachusetts as spring arrives, and with it comes long awaited hope. All my worries and doubts seem to have melted away with the snow, and now it feels like nothing can hold me back. The winter is behind me, and if all goes to plan, it will have been my last full winter in New England.
The winter definitely makes me appreciate warm weather, but I think the same appreciation would be felt from a week of bad weather, versus six months. And the appreciation doesn’t seem to last much longer. You will NEVER hear me complaining about the heat up here, but others seem to quickly forget what we just went through!
I wanted to capture this optimism before I go out to spend the entire day outside. It is so much easier to do the Pollyanna thing, and play the glad game, when you can just get outside, and run through the fields like Julie Andrews. (Yea I know, different movies.)
Left Brain Right Brain Skirmishes
I’ll be making an announcement soon about a book I’ve been working on for over a year. I am the type to over-think things, so naturally, my brain is back and forth between pessimism and optimism about the prospects of this next project. But something about warm weather and sunshine just burns away the negatives! I find my confidence solidifying as I put more days between me and the winter of despair.
The Future of the Mind, by Michio Kaku actually has some insight into the balance in our brains of pessimism versus optimism. Obviously it is great to be optimistic, but unbridled optimism could spell disaster if it makes you take risks that put you in danger. On the other hand, uncontrollable pessimism can paralyze you with fear or apathy since, “everything always goes wrong anyway”.
In order to run proper simulations of our future, which is basically all our brains do, pessimism and optimism need to be balanced. They say the left brain tends to be more analytical, and the right brain more creative. The tendency is that the left brain brings optimism, and the right brain pessimism. I thought this was interesting, as it conjured up images of troubled artists and writers like Picasso, Hemingway, and Poe. On the other hand we don’t tend to think of Einstein as emotional, and the image of a scientist is that they are giddy with excitement about their analytical feats.
So I don’t want to go into this next endeavor with blind optimism as it may be a huge letdown, especially if the optimism stops me from taking steps to increase the chances of success. But if I start with too much pessimism, the defeatist attitude will invade with the, “why even bother” thoughts.
Yes, success is going to be hard fought, certain things might be disappointing, and not everything is going to go exactly according to plan. No, my book doesn’t suck, people will buy it, and there will be plenty of opportunities for promotion.
I need to balance the positive and negative energy, making sure to keep the negatives in check. There is no point in letting the “what if’s” dominate; just consider the most likely scenarios.
Can I do anything about it? No? Stop dwelling on it. Yes? Prepare for the worst, hope for the best.
As for the positive feelings, let them run wild! But make sure you know the brain is throwing in more than a couple grains of salt. Will I be nationally recognized by August? Probably not. But as long as I know that it is a long shot, why not dream, and set a high goal to strive for?
They say that the people who imagine themselves successful, and daydream about achieving accomplishments and reaching goals are more likely to realize those dreams. Now if I had never written a book, being a famous author would simply not come to fruition, no matter how much I planned and dreamed. But I have written a book, and it is just the first of many.
Happy springtime! Let the sunshine guide your energy.