0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144…

The Fibonacci Sequence. The Golden Ratio. The Spiral has surfaced over the last several years as the rule by which much of nature’s seemingly random occurences are actually governed. Cells, trees, flowers, pine cones, ferns, sea shells – look at how their patterns replicate. The Fibonacci Sequence, the natural tendency to spiral, is all around us and is a constant in our lives. One begets two, begets three and before you know it, only eight steps later, you’re into triple digits. The rate at which things replicate is phenomenal – and it’s the spiral effect of all things that I want to talk about in this posting.

The Fibonacci Sequence begins with the numbers 0 and 1, and continues with each following number being the sum of the previous two. I am far from some mathematician who gets excited by numbers, but I think it’s pretty evident that these particular numbers can be observed in many of the events and occurences throughout our lives, and I’m especially interested in the way that they can – often unbeknownst to us – affect our attitudes.

I saw a vivid example of how Fibonacci may be in constant play. I was walking down Madison Avenue and there was a traffic jam at 52nd Street this afternoon as rush hour approached. It only took one guy honking his horn to set off a cacophony of horns within seconds! And while there’s no way of measuring an exact ratio in this instance, I’d be willing to wager that it went something like a spiral. What starts off as one seed – one impatient person – can quickly devolve into a whole gathering of dissatisfied people.

The point is, things have a tendency to spiral.

Imagine for a moment if the news wire was more apt to report on the good things that happen in life, than focus consistently on the world’s failings. I wonder which direction our collective conciousness would spiral toward: pessimissm or optimism. I imagine it’s very simple. Bad begets bad. Good begets good. Which do you want in your life?

Despite a climate that may urge otherwise, I ask you to think positively and let that grow in you.  Beware of a bad attitude – it can grow quickly, without warning and overtake you. I’ve talked before about the contagious power of a smile. Put it to work around you and watch it spread. Yes things will spiral. It is up to you to decide the course that spiral takes.

The Secret Ingredient: Focus on the silver lining and let that spiral.


Image used under Creative Commons from Jitze Couperus and Phil Calvert

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  1. Tina

    lovely – thanks for the reminder and i agree 🙂

  2. Infinity

    This introduces a pleasingly ratoianl point of view.

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