Today’s Word: ‘Positive’ as in… the opposite of Negative.

Sometimes I feel like I’ve got so much bad news splattered on me that I need to take a shower.

I was “Zooming” with my small group yesterday afternoon. We were dealing with the question: “How are you … really?” Emphasis on the ‘really’ part. We’d gotten about halfway around the circle when one of them asked:

Paul, how are you?”

The role of leadership had subtly shifted; one of them had picked up the mantle of ‘facilitator’ and turned the question around on me. I felt loved, honored. And I suddenly felt vulnerable. So I took a deep breath.

Some would say that I’m positive to a fault. Maybe. We are who we are because of who we’ve been. Our families of origin shape us. Our environments, our life narratives, our joys and struggles, even our survival instincts shape us.

And for whatever reason, I got a bunch of positivity. I’m not the only one; there are a lot of us. And we’re here to keep the ship afloat especially in times like these. We’re here to offset the barrage of negativity. I like to say that we’re here to balance things out so that we don’t all wind up like Eeyore – the pessimistic, gloomy, depressed, old grey stuffed donkey who is a friend of Winnie-the-Pooh. But, of course, in our human family, just like in Winnie-the-Pooh’s family, everyone has a voice, everyone is welcome. It all belongs.

After the Zoom meeting, I received an email from a friend with a link to the Good News Network – an online provider for positive news stories from around the globe. So far it’s not corny at all. It was refreshing to read stories about major coffee, donut and smoothie companies providing free product for healthcare workers and first responders, hotel companies in the US and England providing free products and services for already-stretched-to-the-limit care providers. I’ll take that news any day.

She asked me: “Paul, how are you?” I felt loved, honored, and suddenly refreshingly vulnerable.

“I’m good. For now. Doing well.”