TED Conversations

Altaf Zaki

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Positive attitude is the result of positive thinking, positive ideas and coming with new solutions.

Possibilities become realities, once the thinking process looks beyond the notion of “impossible”, which acts as a “limiting block” often automatically before any exploration or search begins to make its journey from the unknown to known.

There are always possibilities and positive ideas and even physical choices among the available resources, though often ignored by most of us, Why? Simply because our minds usually seek to learn the knowledge (facts) but not striving to learn “how to think effectively?” which is in fact a key element in the process to learn “how to use the knowledge” to explore and discover new possibilities and find better solutions.

Many people follow pre-set patterns of concepts and theories treating notions of the past as sole authority or reliable reference. Some academics have been promoting and strictly following such approach for many years. Thus, as result hundreds of thousands minds learnt the facts and figures as they are described in the text books. As a result, our minds get used to with “not to think differently” and literally follow what is written in the books to achieve a formal certification of knowledge.

Yet, it is amazing that whenever there was any scientific, artistic or social creativity, inventions and developments by the humans, it first came as an idea and eventually became a possibility and transformed into realities just by “thinking differently”. Even that truth is acknowledged and accepted by all. However, there aren’t many places to educate minds to learn creatively, “how to think” with new perspectives to explore new dimensions and find new meanings.

We have to learn how to think positively about any aspect of life, we also have to learn how to attain peace of mind and get ultimate satisfaction to satisfy our curiosity and fulfill needs of our lives.

Hence, If we do not learn how to think, we may never know the positive choices which are, in fact, always available and accessible to all of us.

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    Gail . 50+

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    Jul 18 2012: 40 years after graduation from HS, I still shudder when I drive by one. I remember learning how to NOT-ask relevant questions because they weren't relevant to the question at hand IN THE MIND OF THE TEACHER. My education was broken down into tiny compartments, and at no time was one compartment ever permitted to make contact with another. I remember LEARNING how small, unimportant, stupid,, and invaluable that I am, and how important and smart people like teachers and public leaders are. Unfortunately, because I was young, denied to ask meaningful questions, belittled and degraded, I not only did extremely poorly in school, but I gave up. The sad part of this is my IQ is really high. But as a female, that would never be necessary to used, so I was never taken seriously.

    It took 15 years after HS for my worldview to crash and for me to see the lies that I had been told. At that time, I had to learn how to think - how to DARE to ask a question that I KNEW was not one that I was supposed to ask. It was terrifying to ask a question that I would have been punished for asking not that many years before. But at the point of being able to see all the lies, I had nothing to lose.

    I taught myself how to think. But I did that NOT by emulating teachers. I did that by paying attention to my own thoughts, emotions, and feelings, and asking about the role they played in the life of a human. As I saw that thoughts and emotions combine to create consequences, and that intense emotions are evidence of a mistaken belief, I began looking at how malleable beliefs are. As I did this, I began to see the purpose in having feelings (that are not emotions).

    Bottom line - the more I learned about who and WHAT I am, the more (self-aware), the better my thinking skills were. Our culture tells us that we are each separate entities and that some emotions are BAD (rather than the helpful compasses that they are).

    The whole hierarchical system is very wrong!!!!
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    Aug 12 2012: Hello Altaf:>)
    I wholeheartedly believe that a positive attitude is the result of positive thinking, from which stems positive ideas and solutions. If "impossible" is planted in our mind, that is the filter through which we see our world....it is a "limiting block" as you insightfully say.

    You say...."There are always possibilities and positive ideas and even physical choices among the available resources, though often ignored by most of us".

    I think/feel we (humans) often forget that there are possibilities, different ideas, choices and resources. If one has the idea of "impossible" filtering everything that moves through the mind, we will miss the possibilities, choices and available resources....yes?

    I think/feel that many times, it is a matter of remembering, and we can use our thinking mind to remind ourselves. Change our thoughts, we change our feelings, and it may change our perception of the life experience.

    After we learn to "think effectively", as you say, we then need to learn to apply the information to our life experience. As you say.."Many people follow pre-set patterns of concepts and theories" because repeating the same patterns feels safe. Sometimes, it feels risky to take a chance to do something different.

    You write.."there aren’t many places to educate minds to learn creatively, “how to think” with new perspectives to explore new dimensions and find new meanings".

    I do not agree that there aren't many places to educate and explore. Our world is filled with opportunities. We simply need to take the step to explore the adventure of life. I am grateful that I always perceived life as an adventurous exploration, and I embrace change, so the experience has been WONDERFUL for me....even with challenges.....or maybe BECAUSE of challenges:>) I would NEVER give up my curiosity, or desire to learn in each and every moment. It is a gift I give myself.
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    Jul 17 2012: It is true that you are the effect of your thinking good or bad. What you see is the result of this, everything you see is the result of a decision. Goals are so intimate to life that they are almost inseparable. My advise would be to think of what your goal is for that day at the beginning of the day. If you really do this and pay attention you will be amazed at your batting average. One other pieced of advise ignore the losses DO NOT dwell on them, but DO savor the victories. If you do this EVERY SINGLE DAY I guarantee your life will change for the better.
  • Jul 17 2012: It's odd that the simple cause/effect relationship of positive words and positive acts causing positive impacts seems elusive to a large part of the human race. We all need to re-program ourselves from the faulty ancestral brainwashing we have received to make a positive world our reality. The power and value of simple truth also needs to be understood. People have turned to dishonesty as a way of dealing with the power and control freaks who dominate their lives. When truth prevails, other good things will flow from that.
  • Jul 17 2012: Confidence in who you are and what you can do for society improvement is helpful too.

    We are fortunate if we've had parents who taught us to think and who strengthened our confidence.

    We are fortunate if we do not degenerate into cynicism and negative thinking.
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    Jul 18 2012: People thinkings can be positive or negative or promote big ideas according to environment provided around
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    Jul 18 2012: Some things are real; while some things are imagined. We have the power to control our thoughts and thus control our life to a certain extent.
    Positive thoughts could create a reality that is beautiful and enviable. Sometimes imagination is brought alive, into reality.

    However, there is evil and pain in the world, and these can not be wished away by positive thinking. Things will not always go according to our thoughts(either +ve or -ve) Just as the world has its own surprises, we also have a choice on how we respond to the ills and difficult situations that we experience.