Grounded hope

What’s wrong with positive thinking?

In their book Supersurvivors, David Feldman and Lee Daniel Kravetz explain:

The supporters of positive thinking get to have it their way no matter what. If people succeed at work, thrive in life or survive an illness, those supporters can say, “See! It was the positive thinking that did it.” But if people don’t succeed, don’t thrive or, for the very unfortunate ones, don’t survive, supporters of positive thinking can say, “They just didn’t think positively enough. If they had, everything would have been okay.

Instead of positive thinking, Feldman and Kravetz suggest “grounded hope.” You have grounded hope if your hope is rooted in reality. You know that you can’t always control what happens to you. But, you believe that, whatever happens to you, you can make choices and control how you act and react.

Supersurvival, they conclude, is “facing life’s seemingly impossible choices with honesty and faith in ourselves.”

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