‘Positive thoughts draw positive results’
In times when we are witnessing war, pandemic, poverty, and all sorts of crisis, it is positivity and positive thinking alone that can insulate us against misery, writes Dr Prafulla Thorat
“The person who sends out positive thoughts activates the world around him positively and draws back to himself positive results” — Norman Vincent Peale, American author
Those who believe in karma, or the power of positivity will probably understand the significance of the words by the late American author Norman Vincent Peale. Peale became famous for popularising the concept of positive thinking through his best-selling book “The Power of Positive Thinking”. Even though it goes back 71 years to 1952 when Peale’s famous book was published and became one of New York Times' bestsellers, his philosophy of Positive Thinking has remained relevant, and holds even more significance today. In the 21st century, when we are witnessing war, pandemic, poverty, and all sorts of crisis, it is positivity and positive thinking alone that can insulate us against misery. In many ways, either it has already become a way of life, or, it should be our most prioritised lifestyle choice going forward.
But as a doctor why am I talking philosophy and not vaccines and medical science when our neighbour’s (read China) Covid crisis seems to be going from bad to worse? Surprised? Well, don’t be. Covid-19 is a reality, and, we have to live with it. It is also real that rapid spread of Covid in any country is a concern to health officials around the world because unchecked outbreaks create more opportunities for the virus to mutate. We have to stick to our Covid-appropriate behaviours, show the same seriousness in our approach to the pandemic like in the past two years, follow all safety protocols, and show the same resilience that helped us to overcome the crisis.
While it is debatable whether Indians have developed natural immunity from past Covid waves or not, it is, however, certain that mass vaccination has given us protection against the lethality of the virus. With the combination of vaccines and boosters, we could return to normalcy with reduced levels of hospitalisation and death. Under these circumstances, no matter how good or bad things get, what can really protect us against any bodily or mental pain is our positive attitude and positive thinking.
I am able to say this with conviction after treating hundreds of Covid patients in the past two years and witnessing few who beat Covid not because of vaccines or medical science but for sheer will power. For example, one of our beloved Afconians, suffering from fever and cough, returned an oxygen saturation of 64%. When anyone else would have panicked and made the situation worse, that person displayed zen-like calmness. Despite 95% lung damage, our Afconian, who I am proud to call a very strong Covid Warrior, showed amazing determination to survive. That positivity not only stunned doctors but motivated them to save more lives.
Panic and anxiety can accelerate any crisis be it in personal or professional space. And negativity can be catastrophic. For any situation in life, a positive mindset is useful not only to combat negative thoughts but also to channelise the energy towards positive action. A healthy and positive mind allows us to view problems differently. So, while the world is not perfect, and we are not blessed with perfect scenarios in life always, positive thinking can help us control our inner voice and that can in turn give us the confidence to navigate life with an optimistic mindset. As they say, “respect begets respect”, I feel “positive thoughts draw positive results” if you care to listen to and nurture your inner voice.
In all our highs and lows, Afconians have always displayed their true culture of being with each other and standing shoulder to shoulder.
As we welcome the new year with a new hope, let us continue to grow and flourish with all the goodness in our hearts and minds.
Wishing all Afconians a Healthy and Happy New Year.
Dr Prafulla Thorat is the Chief Medical Officer of Afcons Infrastructure Ltd.