the weblog of Alan Knox

Let’s keep things positive, shall we?

Posted by on Apr 13, 2011 in blog links | 8 comments

Let’s keep things positive, shall we?

My good friend Eric at “A Pilgrim’s Progress” has decided to change the tone of his blog posts. He writes about this in a post called “It’s Easier to Blog About the Negative.”

Eric describes how he gets more feedback and comments when he writes negative posts. But, he says he doesn’t want to do that anymore.

Here is part of what Eric writes:

I write this post because I’m going to try to blog more positively about church life. Of course as I do this I will at times compare and contrast what I believe is biblical with what I think are man-made practices. This will by nature have some negative bent to it. However, the goal will be constructive.

This is all easier said than done. I’m tired a lot these days. In my fatigue, it will be simpler to get negative, destructive, and mean on this blog. I’m determined to avoid that downfall. Therefore, I hope you see somewhat of a shift in tenor here.

I also try to write positive blog posts, but it’s not always easy. It is difficult to always write positive blog posts. In fact, even when I write a post that I think is positive, they are sometimes taken negatively by those who disagree.

Why do you think people are more likely to respond to a negative post that they agree with than to a positive post that they agree with? Or, do you think this tendency is true?


8 Comments

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  1. 4-13-2011

    Alan,

    Sometimes truth is negative.

  2. 4-16-2011

    From my perspective, I think it’s easier responding to negative things we agree with because it appears easier to let off steam about something negative – there’s a lot more venting to go around. Being positive, reinforcing and celebrating good things is something that has to be nurtured and practiced … depending on the culture you were brought up in. Culturally for me it was not a practice to be liberal in praise and positive words of affirmation for fear of elevating an individual or coming across as lite and trite. Of course the truth was that we were just geared to enjoying the best in life verbally as we would in a leisure activity or a party.

    Having said that I agree with Aussie that sometimes truth is negative and although it’s not about striking a balance (I don’t think it’s a 50/50 split of negative ans positive), it is about reflecting on the messages we tend to give overall in our approach to life, and if we’re reflecting Jesus that will include the good, the bad and the ugly.

  3. 4-17-2011

    As someone who used to write a lot of poetry and then song lyrics I always found it easier to write a song when I was bent. I strive to keep my primary passions in mind when writing so that what comes out is a clear and honest path to my heart. When I counseled students about their future I tried to help them find their passions. If they didn’t have a good idea what they were I’d ask them two questions: “what ticks you off? What breaks your heart?” Anger is one of the strongest human emotions we have. It’s like 92 octane. Compassion is another high octane emotion that can compel us to do amazing things. So when we write, we need to write through our passions. Sometimes it is fueled by anger and frustration and I’ve had my share of that. Sometimes i tap into a powder keg of compassion for others or passion for the Church or Christ. Either way is fine I think as long as it’s honest, rooted in who you are, and written in love and with much humility.

  4. 4-17-2011

    Craig,

    I agree that anger is a very powerful emotion. Do you think it’s possible to write something positive even though the urge to write may have been triggered by anger (or another negative type emotion)?

    -Alan

  5. 4-17-2011

    I do Alan. I believe Paul pulled it off a number of times. He must have been very discouraged, frustrated and even angry at times to hear reports of things going on with the Churches he helped nurture. While we catch glimpses of it in his letters to them the overall tone is still one of love and affection for the people.

    I do think it takes a strong concerted effort on our part though. Passion is a fire that is brilliant and captivating when controlled, but if you don’t focus it or put limits on it you just end up burning people.

  6. 4-18-2011

    Craig,

    Thanks, and I agree.

    -Alan

  7. 4-18-2011

    Alan, here’s a beautiful example of it I think.

  8. 4-18-2011

    Craig,

    Thank you for the link to the video. I watched the first minute or so, and hope to watch the rest of it soon.

    -Alan