negativity bias

Our mind has a negativity bias; it’s simply more sensitive to unpleasant stimuli. Even the most optimistic ones amongst us have to go through this and constantly battle with their brains to see the bright side of things.

We are more attuned to see what’s negative about a situation very easily. News channels and other media take advantage of this and continuously bombard us with negative, sensational and breaking news in order to get our attention and increase their viewership. As a result, unfortunately most of us end up cultivating a distorted two-dimensional view of this world.

Our human brain has evolved this way so that we could stave off any immediate dangers and ensure our survival in the prehistoric times. However, it serves us little in the modern world, and does more harm than good to us.

Our brain’s negativity bias makes it essential for us to flood ourselves with positivity and uplifting information whenever we get a chance. Instead of seeing the world through a corrupt filter, we need to look at it through a positive lens.

The more we remain in a positive and grateful state, the more we’ll be able to become immune against this negativity bias. It’s a constant never ending battle between us and our brain and there’s no time off. The moment we slip, we’ll again start building negative stories inside our heads.

Since negative actions and interactions have so much impact on us, certain researchers suggest maintaining a ratio of five to one, that is balancing five small positive acts for one negative one.

Occasional big positive experiences such as winning an award or getting our dream job are great, but they don’t have a long-lasting impact on our brain. We need to stack small positive experiences frequently in order to tip the scale towards optimism and gratitude. As we collect tiny but meaningful positive experiences again and again, we get better at accessing the happiness within.

Making positive thoughts and actions a priority creates a significant impact in our lives. And who knows we may even start a chain reaction that may help countless other people distance from the negativity inside them.