One of my daughters had a tireless habit when she was young of always asking ‘what if’. Those words were most likely followed by something way out there, usually negative and often blown out of proportion. And she could be relentless at times.
When we indulge in the ‘what ifs’ (and we all do) we are using our brilliant creative imaginations to conjure up the worst possible scenarios. Pure indulgence like this can get us bouncing like a ping pong ball.
What if I get sick? What if my company doesn’t survive? What if I don’t have a job to go back to? What if I never get to watch another live sports event? What if school this fall doesn’t happen? What if these kids never leave my house? 🙂 What if my 2020 grad never gets a job? What if I go postal living with these same humans?
Oh, how our brains like to create drama and spin the negative.
And once we are focused on something dramatic and negative, our brains instinctively go in search of evidence to back up our thoughts. Psychologists call it cognitive bias.
Luckily, it goes both ways.
The what-ifs can always be used in a positive way. What if I don’t get sick? What if my company becomes even better? What if not having a job leads me to my dream job? What if I never get to watch another live hockey game? (sorry – I can’t get over that one lol) What if they come up with an even better version of school for the fall? What if being in the class of 2020 ends up being the best thing on my kid’s resume? What if this time makes me appreciate these people even more?
What if this ends up being one of the best things to have ever happened to us as a human race?
Choose to focus on positive ways to frame a situation and your brain will find ideas to back up the possibility.
How can one person make a difference? That’s how.