According to Ehrenreich, in an interview on bloomberg.com, the whole movement of positive thinking got its start in corporate America. During a cycle of lay-offs. Motivational speakers were hired. Preach a message of wealth and prosperity, and the power of positive thinking. Soon, according to Ehrenreich, "Positive Thinking became the ideology of the business world in America." When she had breast cancer, she felt "oppressed by the feel-good aspects of the culture."
We can't grieve, we can't mourn, we can't be depressed, we can't be sorrowful, we can't be angry, anxious, edgy, tired. Getting nervous at a party, especially if we don't know anyone, which is completely normal, completely human--- has been pathologized; social anxiety disorder. And guess what? You can take a pill and cure it. You can always feel good. You don't ever have to feel bad. And if you do feel bad, it is your own fault. You just have to think positive.
This is the message we hear. This is the message I hear. How am I standing in my own way? How can I work harder to be happier? What am I doing wrong? Am I doing something wrong? Why aren't I happier? I should be happy. Everybody else is. According to Ehrenreich, forced optimism, "..silences people and quells dissent." Its embarrassing to be sad. We never say that. Or if we do, more often than not, we hear in response,