Wednesday, August 14

Dealing With Negative People

This is quite a tricky post to write even though it is something that I think all of us struggle to deal with effectively. First off, it's important to realise that of course we can all have down days and focus on the negatives, however, there seem to be certain people who can't seem to shift their viewpoint from a negative perspective. Overall in my life I am surrounded by incredible individuals who make me laugh, even sometimes cry with laughter and just brighten the energy of the room when they walk into it. Contrastingly, there are a few people who do the complete opposite, and not only that, but once I've spent time with a negative person I come away feel emotionally, mentally and physically drained.

Recently I listened to a podcast from Oprah's amazing series, Oprah's Super Soul Conversations, which talked 'believing people the first time'. This basically means that when someone shows themself to you, either through their spoken word or actions, you should believe that they are portraying their whole authentic self to you. Therefore you can use this phrase to empower yourself to shut out those negative individuals, who even though you believe they might eventually change, they are showing you who exactly they are the first time they show their negativity. I guess it's important here to refer back to the premise of my thoughts on negative people, as we need to be aware of the context that negativity is framed within. If a person is saying something negative and it is for a valid reason, like something truly bad has happened to them, then of course as a supportive friend you pull through for them. I suppose the difference here is between whether they are upset by something viable, or whether they just literally moan about every goddamn thing. 

I recently came away from a friendship with someone who, although we did have some amazing times together, I found myself coming away from those encounters feeling absolutely exhausted. Not only that, but negative people taint your own view of the world around you and before you know it you find yourself seeking out annoying things to validate conversations with that person who drains you so much. Even though our friendship spanned over a few years and yes it was a difficult situation to be in as I realised that I didn't want to continue to put myself through that negativity and also for Olivia's sake; I didn't want her growing up watching me spend my time with someone who has such a negative effect on my wellbeing. Despite all of those endless negative conversations, if I had only listened to Oprah's Super Soul Conversations 2 years ago, I would have shifted my perspective and realised that I must believe that person the first time and consequently listened to that little voice in my head that said they didn't make me feel good.

It's such a difficult scenario to be in as you feel the need to see the best in everybody and believe that they can change. However it is also important to respond to that negativity in a way that you feel comfortable, such as changing the conversation or spending less time with that person. But if there is a person who only focuses their attention on negativity, regardless of your efforts, I guess it's time to move on without them. It would be fascinating to see if you have any experience of this and how you dealt/are dealing with it. 

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