You Gave Me The Answer - How Do You Stay Positive?


It hasn’t quite been the ‘new year, new me’ situation we were expecting in 2021, but thankfully the remedy is on its way. The last year has been a particularly difficult time for people all over the world, and here at we’re making a conscious effort to check in with our friends, our family, and with our own sense of well-being right now. It seems like a good time to ask - how are you guys doing?

One thing that we find helpful is not giving in to negativity when times get tough. It’s something you might notice in Paul’s music, too - McCartney III can feel like a positive album, even though it was recorded during the pandemic. So, as we prepared to ask Paul some of your questions via Zoom, we thought this question from Amelie on Twitter came at the perfect time…

Amelie: It can be so hard to find positivity in life when everything in the news about our future seems so dire. Do you have any advice or insight into what we can do in situations like these? Do you think that music could be a key that gives hope for humanity's spirit and perseverance?

Paul: I’ve always been an optimistic person, because I don’t like the alternative! I find that even when you go through crisis after crisis, you still come out the other end, and no matter how bad you’re feeling it can often work out OK.

Something I’ve learned is that life’s good, really, but we often screw it up. So I try to tell myself and other people that if we can just work on not screwing it up, it’s going to be better for us and everyone else. I always try and see the good side - the silver lining - and if you're lucky, it arrives.

I remember as a kid, I would hear old women on the housing estate where we used to live saying ‘ohh me rheumatism, ohh me arthritis, ohh it’s killing me, it’s terrible!’ And I thought well, it’s not going to get any better if you talk like that! I know life’s difficult for a lot of people, but I think a positive thought is often a great help. You’ve got to train yourself not to think the worst.

With Covid, it’s awful. You’ve got to look for the good side, and even though we’re all restricted right now, you’ve got to say – ‘well, on the other hand it gives me loads of time to do all the stuff I wanted to do’. And even though we can’t hug our friends like we wish we could, there will come a time when we’ll be able to, and I have a feeling it’ll be even better than ever. Do you find music helpful? Do you think that music can help lift your spirits up?

P: Yeah, definitely. I think music is a great healer. I think that you can be feeling terrible, then put on a piece of music you like and get swallowed up by it. You can go in into the mood of the music and it’s a magical thing. I remember once, again when I was a kid, I was hanging out with my mate from school and I had a headache, and we put on an Elvis record – ‘All Shook Up’ – and at the end of the record I didn’t have the headache! So, I’ve always believed in that power.

Do you have a song that you can always rely on to life your spirits? What has helped you keep positive in challenging times? Share your own advice in the comments, and remember, as Paul says, that the silver lining will arrive.