Sharing my experience with those who are interested. Appreciate you attention, comments, and sharing with others.


Notes from the Valley - When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemonade

In total, I've now spent around 18 months in the Valley. That means I'm already pretty used to being here, and I'm much less surprised with anything that happens around here. But one thing is constantly making me feel the difference between here and the places I used to live.

This one thing is probably America's main asset, the secret ingredient which makes this country work. I am quite sure that if you look at the short history of the USA, you'll see that this is what made it. I'm speaking of the great skill each American is being taught from pretty much the moment they are born - the skill of positive thinking.

But what does positive thinking actually mean? One may think that it is about seeing only positive side of life, paying no attention to any troubles that appear. And he or she would be totally misled in that case. Positive thinking is not about seeing the world through rose-colored lenses. 

Neither is it about being optimistic all the time. Optimists are often just people that tend to take responsibility for successes, but blame others or circumstances for their failures. Pessimists do the opposite. And the technique of positive thinking uses the best of both approaches.    

I think that the best phrase to illustrate positive thinking is 'When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemonade'. That's the essence of this approach, which allows you to accept all the negative aspects of your present situation, but get the most of positive side of it. 

America is the country of emigrants, people who are constantly moving, who are ready to follow their lucky star at any time. Each year millions of people legally or illegally arrive to the US. And America somehow manages to unify all the different cultures that are brought by the newcomers, melt them in one bowl and create the ultimate American culture, common for all who stays here. And this positive way of thinking seems to be the glue that holds it all together.

Well, what's so good about positive thinking? 

According to the doctors (American, of course), positive thinking results in a range of health benefits including:

  • Longer life span
  • Less stress
  • Lower rates of depression
  • Increased resistance to the common cold
  • Better stress management and coping skills
  • Lower risk of cardiovascular disease-related death
  • Increased physical well-being
  • Better psychological health

But what is more important to my mind is that a positive way of thinking leads to better accepted decisions, that are easier to execute. You're just more eager to do something you think of as a positive change, than a necessary but negative one. And that generates quite a bit of better feeling when you're in America, and Silicon Valley in particular.

Want to replicate the success of Silicon Valley? Get yourself used to positive thinking.

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