Negative Nancies

Each time I write a piece I try to write about something I am experiencing. I find that the topic flows much more smoothly when I do, and it also gives me the opportunity to research and discover ways to not only help you but also help myself. Recently, I have been blessed with some exciting news in my life. While I am ecstatic about this news, I have found myself encountering others who seem to be intent to rain on my parade. Therefore, I thought I would explore the topic of how to approach and behave towards negative people.

We have all been in the company of pessimistic people at some point in our lives, how we choose to behave around them and interact with those people is always something I have found interesting. Typically, if I am around negativity, I recognize it has adverse effects on me. I begin acting more pessimistic, gloomy, and I am less fun to be around. I completely acknowledge that I allow myself to be adversely affected by people. Whereas some people have this magical ability to brush off what people say and do, I seem to be inept at doing so. But as I believe all people can change, I have decided in light of the recent good news, that I will not let others dampen the positive changes happening in my life.

Negative people – What is their deal?

After reading from different sources, I learned some interesting points about negative people.

  1. Cynical people like to blame everything and everyone for their negativity rather than take responsibility for it themselves.
  2. Often, those who are negative feel they do not receive enough admiration and affection. Also, they feel they don’t have a say in what goes on in their life. They then try to command admiration, affection, and power from people around them.
  3. People who are perpetually negative believe they must be needy, dominating, and outspoken in their complaints of things not going the way they want or expect, for it to be acknowledged and addressed. Usually, they do not recognize that these behaviors and actions do not achieve what they ultimately want and in most cases, cause their relationships to be negatively impacted.
  4. Negative people typically are trying to get a reaction out of the person to whom they are speaking. Whether it is a fight they are looking to pick, or to bring you down to their pessimistic level, or to get an apology; they feed off your reaction.

How can you combat a negative person?

In most situations when I do not have the answers, I read and consult with others, this circumstance was no different. Here are some excellent solutions that I plan to put into action.

  1. Remind yourself that this person is choosing to be cynical and unhappy, their negativity is their problem, not yours. I am a fixer by nature, so reminding myself of this will be particularly important in maintaining my positivity.
  2. Remove yourself from the situation, emotionally, mentally, even physically if possible. If a person continues to be negative and attempts to pull you down with them, find a way to disconnect yourself from them. It could be you just smile and don’t engage with them. It could be you leave the room or end the phone call, whatever is necessary.
  3. Encourage the person to be positive by either being optimistic yourself or getting them to the point out the good things occurring in their life. Sometimes it is difficult to remain positive myself, so this can be a helpful exercise always to see the bright side of things.
  4. Look inwards and try to determine what it is about this person’s actions and behavior that is causing you to be triggered. Reflect and discover the why behind it, once you do you will remove the other person’s power over you.
  5. Emanate positivity and focus your energy on your optimism. I had already started doing this before I began researching for this post. When I have faced negative people in recent weeks, I try to take deep breaths in through my nose and out through my mouth. It is a yoga exercise where you envision, inhaling the good and exhaling the bad. I also think about all the good in my life. I have found it to be helpful to refocus my feelings and emotions and channel them towards happiness.

Helen Keller said, “Keep your face to the sunshine, and you cannot see a shadow.” I couldn’t agree more!