The concept of thinking positive and looking positive, as a way to attract positive aspects into life is not a new phenomenon. But every time there is an attempt at re-positioning this old secret desire of human beings it gains world-wide recognition and acknowledgement. I know the power that “the law of attraction” holds on to the lives of so many people. “The Secret” book and DVD became a sensation. Why won’t it? It caters directly to one of the fundamental desires of the human mind – addressing wants! But one of the fundamental things that these books, tapes, videos and trainings do is ask you to maintain a positive look. According to these, if one manages to maintain a positive look, one is bound to attract more positive aspects onto himself / herself.
NOTE: Please don’t misunderstand me – I’m not against being positive and I am definitely not promoting being negative as an alternative. But I am only using it to highlight how this is affecting decision making.
When this “positive thinking” school of living is borrowed by leaders in businesses and other institutions, the first thing that happens is that they don’t want to acknowledge challenges, problems, issues, etc. Because a positive person is always positive, speaks positive things, thinks positive things and acts positively. Your product is not selling? -Be positive, push harder it will sell. Productivity is a creeping issue? – Be positive, talk to your team, motivate them for all is well. Rosy picture indeed! But the downside of this is that challenges are constantly subdued without objective analysis. While they can be suppressed for a while, over time they come back in a different form and in a much stronger manner. Often by the time the institution is forced to acknowledge the problem, it is too late.
Why not on the contrary be neutral? Neutral to the changes that happen, neutral to challenges that crop up, neutral to positive and negative results with equal poise. This will enable a leader look at issues objectively and make the best use of resources at large. This kind of leadership will make the greatest impact on society. Think!