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How to See the Best When Your Brain Won't Let You

Read Time: 2 minutes 6 seconds Sometimes, your brain won't let you see the best in a situation. Some
How to See the Best When Your Brain Won't Let You
Read Time: 2 minutes 6 seconds
Sometimes, your brain won’t let you see the best in a situation.
Sometimes, you get stuck and you need some help to get out.
Your brain is a powerful tool, possibly the most powerful tool ever created.
But it still has its limitations.
There are times when all it wants to do is focus on the bad.
When that happens, you need a strategy to counteract the negativity.

A Strategy for Seeing the Best
I’m one of those people who can immediately spot the negative in a situation.
It’s probably just how my brain is wired–and how my ancestors’ brains were wired. Seeing the negative provides great benefits when you’re in survival mode. But we don’t deal with nonstop survival mode like our ancestors did. We need a new approach.
Here’s a quick technique I use to see the best in a situation that, at first glance, doesn’t look so great.
I break it down into lots of little pieces.
If I can’t see the best in the situation as a whole, can I see the best in something smaller? Let’s take the coronavirus pandemic as an example, since it’s on everyone’s minds. At first glance, this appears to me to be a terrible tragedy. But that kind of thought won’t get me anywhere. It will leave me stuck in place feeling like I can’t do anything to contribute.
But if I go smaller, if I break the seeming tragedy into tinier and tinier pieces, I start to see little glimmers of hope. I see people stepping forward. I see individuals donating money and time. I hear stories of compassion amidst the stories of greed and panic.
Next, I zoom in on the piece I’ve found.
I review the story that captured my interest. I understand what makes it special to me. I learn about the characters in the story, the people that make it come to life for me. I now notice and appreciate something that I never would have considered looking for.
This is a powerful strategy, even during times of great tragedy. Especially during times of great tragedy.
In Conclusion: Finding the Light
Your brain isn’t always going to want to cooperate. Sometimes you need to give it an extra push to make it work for you, to find the light in the rolling waves of darkness.
The light is there, though. It always is.
If you can’t see it through the expansive forest, pick one interesting-looking tree and climb up it. Peer through the branches until you see it again.

If you try this strategy, let me know how it works for you. Share it with your friends. Forward this email. Heck, print it out and mail it to someone you haven’t talked to in a while. It all helps.

Jordan
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Jordan Brown - Mental Health Writer, Poet, and Advocate

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