We are humanity and we are doers, we live by doing things. We start our day by looking into the mirror and wash our face or take a shower. We do this in order to help our body to wake up and get ready to move. And of course, to feel fresher and better. We then get ready to go to work or school or enjoy our leisure time. After finishing our daily plan, whatever they are, we get ready for the evening. Prepare dinner, do some housework and be with family. It’s late in the night and we are still awake, reading or watching something, perhaps working on something in the garage or do some hobby related things.
The desire to improve human condition is universal, everyone is doing it. It is 24 hours of ‘to do’ things, I say 24 hours because even when we are sleeping our body works to improve our own body. God forbid, should the ‘old warrior’, that is our heart, stop doing its work even for a minute, game over. It is a two way of seeing this, one is the idea that we do everything because of profit and the other is we do everything because it supports life itself. You decide which one is more attractive to you. But it’s also you who have to be careful on conformist pressure. (Fatas et al., 2018) If your beloved prime minister, or your favourite billionaire, or your boss says, do it! Will you, do it?
Some of us are motivated by the desire to fit in, to avoid conflict and gain approval of other. While of course these can be good things, loneliness can be debilitating if your needs aren’t met, conflicts can harm you if there are bad intentions behind and gaining approval from others can be motivated by our own victim mentality, which isn’t helping either.
History of doing
So, to come back to the main topic, regardless of being conformists or nonconformists, we still do things. We constantly engage in activities, whether they are playing, working, learning or just simply by existing. As if the purpose of our own existence is to make a difference in the world. Some of us want to make the world a better place by volunteering or donating. Some of us want to influence people by creating art and literature. Some are concerned about the economy, so they start a business in order to create jobs. Then some would go to university to educate themselves and then the world, to create awareness. Yet, some just choose to be kind and compassionate to others to increase the wellbeing of the community and society in general.
Do you think there are people who for some reason aren’t doers? I’m having difficulties with seeing if there are any. Our globalised world (even with the pushing events of nowadays) is so intertwined and connected that it’s hard to see if there are any kind of people left out from the doer’s world. And by the way, this has actually always been the case, it’s not a modern invention. For instance, think of cave art from 30.000 years ago. Those age-old painters of the world. Yes, you can find cave drawings both from European caves and Asian caves around the same time, see how interconnected we are. But then, there are those suffering of anxiety, they are full of fear. “What will they think of my behaviour?” Thoughts like this can be limiting, restrictive and confining. Though, the truth is there are those who are arrogant, cocky and overconfident and they are doers indeed. Behind their behaviour lies anxiety and fear. Only this is how they would like to hide them.
I would argue that are (some) positivity in every action and actually, there are positivity in inaction as well. This line of thinking is easier to sell to the academic community than to the general public. Academicians may look at things from the many lenses of theories, concepts and ideas, whereas lay people may appreciate things in their immediate place and time, that is, you either do it or don’t do it. And if you don’t you are to be ashamed of yourself as you are condemned and punished of being a non-doer in doer world. “How dare you?” Hm… think about it? Would you punish someone because of meditation or because of simply just being calm and serene?
It is true the world is a better place because we are doer’s actions. On the other hand, there over-doers. I am thinking particularly of psychopaths. Do you know what are the 3 most important characteristics of psychopaths? S/he does NOT love! S/he is NOT afraid! And S/he is NOT learning from his/her mistakes! They do have lots of desire and pathos instead. Unconditional love and empathy are unknown to them, and they do not see the consequences of lacking these qualities.
A doer’s world
So, all in all there you have it. Entrepreneurs, innovators, activists and leaders are part of the doer’s world. They are self-motivated, driven and ambitious, proactive, persistent and resilient. Doer’s world is heavy at the top and heavy at the bottom, but it’s thin and fragile in between. People usually know what and how to do things, thus the mind and the hand allegory, however, unforeseen circumstances may cause trouble to bring about change. They are driven with an inner motivation to achieve their goals, though sometimes they can be impulsive which can lead to errors, rather than good results. They proactively look to improve things, but sometimes they make the wrong decisions. They are persistent, they don’t give up their goals, yet sometimes they are inflexible, and this can limit their successes. Although we know some people do reckless things and make bad decisions from out of fear, anxiety or depression… and then we label them exactly that, mentally ill people. Still, labelling them chronically or pathologically mentally ill is not something I would do! For there can be objective causes for their behaviours. Think of people who are in the wrong place, at the wrong time, doing the wrong thing. These are the people who are working at a company not from out of heartfelt desire, but from out of necessity. Or people who are poor and they fight the ‘everyday war’ to stay alive, people under dictatorships, people in a war-torn country, or people who live in communities with socio-cultural problems. Is it their fault? Nope!
For those who aren’t having such issues, it’s best to raise awareness, taking the time to think before act, considering long term consequences of decisions, be able to change plans. And don’t forget to relax and recharge!
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‘We Are The Positive Psychology People’