What is Positive News and What Are Common Factors?

The more I speak to people the more I see them get excited about Positive News For You. Comments like “I hate the news” change to “I will have to check it out”.

People want better. They want good things. They don’t want to be pounded about the bad stuff.

This morning I was telling a friend about the homeless man in New Haven Connecticut, where she was fun. The man had found a $10, 000 check and returned it to the owner. He was blessed in return with a new apartment and payment for his real estate education.

To another woman who trains dogs, I mentioned the story of Oregon dog trainers. It takes as much energy to discuss a positive story as it does a negative one. We simply need to change our perspective and our conversation.

Over the last few months, I have noticed a few things about the stories we publish and the consistency of people’s liking of them. They fall under certain headings and in no particular order.

  • Pay It Forward- People love stories of people receiving something good and then, in turn, doing something good for others. For instance, you get to the Starbucks window, find out your order has been paid for and you, in turn, pay for the folks behind you.
  • Veterans- There is something that always trends up in stories and that is good news stories about veterans. Whether they are helping others or being helped themselves. The stories always bring a good feeling and a reminder of the price these men and women have paid. Like the story of the homeless Marine who helped a woman who had run out of gas by giving here $20. Her response was to start a GoFundMe account. As of this writing, it is at $371,195!
  • Homeless- Any story about the homeless has the potential to be sad in short order. But, what I am seeing is lots of stories that talk about how they have helped people or amazing stories of folks reaching out into their community and blessing them with food, finances, housing and more.
  • Children- These stories are always awesome and always popular! Sometimes they are about young entrepreneurs, or those battling against sickness and overcoming. I love the stories of the change they bring to our world. One of my favorites was the little boy who dressed up as a superhero and rescued homeless cats.
  • Celebrity-With all the “bad” things happening in Hollywood people are looking for good things to happen.  Recently we posted a story about Bill Murray paying it forward. There have been others.  26 years ago today, American country singer Garth Brooks asked fans to bring 10 cans of food to a grocery store in exchange for a lottery envelope, some of which contained tickets to see Garth at a forthcoming show. Over 10,000 cans were donated to charity. We like those stories!
  • Pets-  Lots of people have pets. Because of that, there are lots of pet stories. You know, the lost dog that returns. The cat that saves people from a fire. (We posted those.) We have also posted stories about giraffes, goats, pigs and more. You love pet stories!  Here is a fun video!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xWKzYGhs8BE
  • Disaster Help-When disaster occurs, whether it be flooding, hurricanes, fires or shootings, we have shown you the good side of humanity. Heroes who protect others save folks and animals and change the world through their brave actions. Usually, when we talk to them, they respond in humility, alluding to the fact that “anyone could do what I did”.  They change the course of history.
  • Christmas-This category never gets old. And since we are in the season, we are seeing trees and Santas, but we are also seeing the wonder of the season overtake people’s lives.  Sometimes stressful, I continue to see people changing their communities during the season for Christmas. (You may know I LOVE Christmas!)
  • Green Energy-More and more we see amazing stories about wind and solar, hydro and geothermal. So many are pursuing the dream of energy-efficient homes, cars, and businesses, that the technology just gets better and better. Yes, there are leaders like Elon Musk, but there is so much going on globally that it is encouraging and wonderful to watch.
  • Winners-This topic talks of the recipients of lotteries and contests, but sometimes the object of someone’s generosity. The waitress who receives a $5,000 tip. The mother of a sick child who receives a car from Tyler Perry. We love a winner. But we like the sense of hope it brings to us.
  • Medical Breakthroughs-My last topic is one that impresses me a lot. Medical breakthroughs include wonder drugs and better science. It is not just about research and development or brings a new medicine to market, but sometimes speaks to the change that the medical practice itself brings through service and understanding.

I may not have hit them all, but those are the ones that climb on our site statistics. Have I missed one?

Positive news provides a tension or a conflict. It stands up to a world that sometimes seems to be going to hell in a handbasket. Just to stand in the face of negativity is a feat in itself.  But maybe that is just what draws us.

So much of what triggers a positive news story is an incident. Not just a bad situation but maybe even a good one. (The winning of the World Series is one.) Many of our stories we share are because something popped up or surprised people. (The shooting in Las Vegas or Texas. Who would expect that? Certainly no one. Yet heroes erupted.)

But here is my favorite. David versus Goliath. Who is the winner when the chips are down? It will be the story of the little guy who overcomes! We love those kinds of stories.

I continue to believe we can change the world.

We think good. We see good. We embrace good. We do good.

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