(Excerpt from When Nothing Works Try Doing Nothing)
If positive thinking were benign, a useless dalliance of the mind, then it would be nothing more than a frivolous waste of time. But positive thinking is not benign. Ironically, positive thinking can have negative psychological backlash. You may be surprised at this revelation, but when you understand the mechanism you will know it to be true from your own experience. Let’s take a few minutes to explore these negative effects and how we can over- come them. Remember, our job is not to eliminate positive thinking. That would be ridiculous. Our job is to eliminate the negative effects of the improper application of positive thinking. And for that we have the perfect tool. But before we get to that, let’s take a quick look at what others have to say about the negative effects of positive thinking.
A study by researchers Ayelet Fishbach from the University of Chicago and Jinhee Choi from Korea Business School found that when you stay focused on your goals, you diminish your ability to enjoy what you are doing. Less satisfaction in the doing translates to a decreased ability to reach your goal. Their subjects were asked to work out in a gym. One group focused on the goal, for instance running on a treadmill, while the other group, without a goal just focused on the experience of the workout. The group that focused on their goal had more enthusiasm but less success than the non-goal-oriented group. Additionally, the goal-oriented group felt that the exercise was more of an effort than the other group. Apparently, keeping your eye is on the goal diminishes your ability to enjoy what you are doing right now. In essence you are living an illusion skewed toward a positive outcome rather than facing the present reality.
Information: The Kinslow System™
Technique: Stop Thought Experience