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One of my favourite maxims is “Be A Radiator, Not A Drain”. And by that I mean don’t be one of those people that constantly drains others with their negative vibes and constant self talk. I cannot stand people who talk about themselves non-stop. And I hate people who fun suck the life out of everything with their never ending negativity. But how to stay positive around negative people? Well, here are some of my best tips.
How To Stay Positive Around Negative People
We all have that particular friend or relative that cannot help but put you down. Or put what you are wearing down. Or talk every situation down.
You might know someone who always assumes the worst, fears everything, is judgemental or demands all the time. They would love to pull you into their world of doom and gloom.
Sometimes we need an armament of tricks to help us not to be drawn into such a negative nelly mindset. So what do you do? Here are some of the techniques I find most useful when dealing with these fun suckers.
Don’t Feed The Trolls
The simplest form of defence I always find is to do nothing! If you can bear to just be around this person and not be affected by their negative attitude, then good for you. I refer to this technique as the “Smile and Wave” formula, and it is great for those people that you have to deal with regularly such as the people you work with, or your boss.
Staying calm and not giving them the reaction that they want shuts some of them down a treat. Or even agree with them, in your own way. Just nodding whilst thinking the opposite can be a real help.
I used to work for someone who was constantly negative, never stopped talking about herself and was rather horrible to the people around her. As I worked for her and liked the job I just sat it out. I wasn’t in a position to ‘fix’ her attitude. I didn’t get involved and instead just ‘smiled and waved’. If you can keep feeling above it all then you have pretty much won the battle. (and why are you reading this lol…)
But sometimes it will get on top of you, and what do you do then?
Call Them Out
If you think that you can approach the situation like this, do call them out! Some people do not even realise that they do it. Being critical is a part of their nature, albeit a rather unhelpful one.
So maybe an non confrontational discussion about what they do, and how it could be affecting their relationships with those around them, could really help everyone.
Limit Your Time Engaging
Give yourself a time limit for engaging with the negative Norbert. Set a timer if you are having to telephone them. Set those boundaries. Make an excuse to leave the conversation. In fact, its always good to have some fgood reasons to move on in any situation. “I just have to go make a call” is one of my particular favourites.
Make It A Game
I once heard a story about a lady whose mother was constantly having a go at her over her life choices. When the mother called the daughter up, the daughter always knew that she was in for an ear-bending time of being put down for half an hour.
But instead of hating those interactions, the daughter actually made it into a bit of a treat session for herself. She would place a bag of chocolates at the side of the telephone. And every time her mother treated her negatively or made a remark, she would eat a chocolate. She called it her ‘treat game’.
If you’ve ever had a friend or relative who loves to judge or guilt trap or bad mouth you, I’m sure you will agree that this is a great antidote to such interactions.
But what if you are dieting/don’t want to eat the feelings away? Why not just cough, or say a particular word whenever the fun stealer decides to make a negative remark. Make it as fun a word as possible (bubble is a favourite of mine…).
And to prevent a row, keep it non confrontational. (Bollocks is probably not the best word to choose, for instance…)
Similarly, you could visualise yourself throwing their words away when they are negative against you. Just throw those nasty negative words into the bin. (Extra points for actually physically miming this action in front of the person concerned…)
Give Yourself Positive Affirmations
This one is useful for those negative nellies that are constantly moaning about a situation and trying to get you to agree with them. They cannot wait for you to join them in their wallowing.
Or for those people who can’t wait to put down all your achievements, or not give you any credit.
But their opinions of you do not define you. And nor should you let them bring you down. Do not give them that power over you or your emotions.
If you catch yourself being drained and feeding into their negativity or negative vibes, then do remember that it is their issue and not yours! Give yourself positive affirmations. That you are good enough for all this. That this is not your moan and that their negative attitude is not your mindset.
That should help protect you from being brought down to where they are. Just remind yourself that the best way to triumph is by using your positivity in the face of their negative vibes. Bit like a superhero, really.
Compassion – Be Kind
This is a tricky one. Because if you are not careful, they will draw you in by using your kindness against you. But it would be unkind to not try and empathise with a person. Sometimes there are underlying issues that are causing their negative attitude. Try and think about the issue from their perspective, and try to offer practical solutions to why they are being so negative…
However, this does not work with everyone. It won’t work with that older relative who just loves to find fault with everything that you do. Or the jealous person who cannot be happy for you, or for themselves.
If you get even a whiff of the fact that they have no intention of being positive in any form, I would definitely go to the next solution, which is to
Because sometimes this is the only way to deal with them. And the kindest way. Cut your losses and run as fast as you can for your own sanity.
Some people just wish to wallow in their own drama. And no matter what you try to do, nothing is going to help if they do not want to help themselves. If they refuse to learn, change or grow, it is out of your hands.
Sometimes how to stay positive around negative people involves blocking and avoiding. Because their absence can only make your life better.
Need some ideas on how to get happier in these turbulent times? See this post
Or why not make your own happy list?
And see some of my quotes for positivity.
So, has this guide on how to stay positive around negative people help you right now? I’d love to hear if you have any other tips that you’ve tried. Comment below, or find me on social media.
And please do pin this post for later.