By Andrew Menaker, PhD
With covid-19 and the recent steep market sell-off, we seem to be surrounded by bad news.
We’re all experiencing a variety of powerful emotions right now including fear, anxiety, uncertainty, and for some, panic.
Yesterday I was talking to a prospective coaching client, Rick, who told me that his strategy of trying to think only positive thoughts wasn’t working. Not surprisingly, Rick said it was hard to remain positive while watching the market go down so quickly and also being bombarded with bad news.
“Everywhere I turn, all I get is bad news, and even my wife has been giving me regular updates”.
I’m not against positive thinking; it does have its place. We need positive thinking to help us set goals, and to have a dream or vision for the future. But Rick was looking for help right now. He was looking for help with managing how he interacts with the market.
One of the things I do with my coaching clients is show them how cultivating and maintaining a mindset of gratitude is more helpful than simply trying to ‘remain positive’.
A mindset of gratitude has positive aspects, but the key difference is that gratitude is connected to what has actually happened, and that is very different than positive thinking or hoping for something that may or not happen.
There’s an abundance of research on the power of gratitude and how it contributes to psychological resilience and even physical health.
It may not be easy, but training your mind on aspects of life that you appreciate is a much more effective strategy for stress than trying to think only positive thoughts.
Andrew Menaker PhD is a trading psychologist; you can read more about him at http://www.andrewmenaker.com