Accentuating the Negative

“Our minds are Velcro for negative information but Teflon for positive.”  Rick Hanson

Reading a book, Gratitude Works by Robert Emmons, I came across this quote attributed to neuroscientist Rick Hanson.  It seems there is a scientific basis for the ease with which I slip into and stick with the practice of negativity, what Emmons calls a “built in bias” toward negativity.  This is an example of what is generally known in psychology as a “knowledge to performance gap” and is exemplified in Paul’s familiar conflict as stated in Romans 7:15-19:

“For I do not understand what I do.  For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do….”

Nothing in this, of course, makes “normal” feel good, but it does identify a commonality in the inclination to accentuate the negative, and a place from which to start cultivate a more grateful disposition.

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