Start Living the Life You Want by Learning to Overcome Negativity

A group of scrabble tiles forming the word PositiveLet’s face it, we live in a world that is filled to the brim with negativity.  Conflict surrounds us all, poor attitudes bring people down, and everyone is preoccupied about what they don’t have or what they can’t do.  No person on the planet is immune from the perils of negative thinking. In fact, many of you have probably heard or been told any number of the following phrases: You aren’t good enough for that. You can’t succeed.  It won’t work. It’s better to give up now instead of taking a risk. You’ll never amount to anything. Etc, etc…

Phrases like these (and many others) can end up being self-fulfilling prophecies.  The more negativity around you and the more people within your circle who exhibit negative behaviors, the more you will become influenced and persuaded. Eventually you begin to believe those people around you and we get sucked into the downward spiral of negativity.  Before you know it you find yourself depressed, overweight, broke, and without hope for the future. You’ve bought into the lies and now you’ve become just like everyone else. Bobby Darnell said, “Negativity is cannibalistic. The more you feed it, the bigger and stronger it grows.”

Overcoming negativity is not easy but it most certainly can be done. For some, all they need is to hear some positive affirmations and they can flip the switch to start moving in the right direction.  However, for most people it’s not that easy. Conquering the negativity requires much more then flipping a switch and we must directly defeat the negativity within ourselves while also properly handling the negativity in others around us.

Handling the Negative Thinking Within Yourself

A Wine Glass that is half full or half empty

The first place to look when attempting to change your life is within yourself. Dive deep into the files of your mind and develop an awareness of the issues and locations where negativity is bred.  How did you become so negative? Once you begin to understand the origins of your negative mindsets you can slowly start disassociating yourself from those things.  Erase the corrupt files in your mind and replace them with positive thoughts. If you were once told that you couldn’t do something or that you would never succeed then you must erase those memories and replace them with declarations of positive thoughts. In order for a true change to manifest itself within you, you must rewrite the source code of your mind.  For every negative thought and memory find an equal but opposite replacement that will take precedence over your subconscious.

When you start reconditioning your mind you will need to develop ways to keep moving forward.  First begin by saying positive things to yourself out loud.  Hearing the words, even from your own mouth, makes them more powerful and adds realism to a positive declaration.  Next, write down positive thoughts and inspirational quotations.  Read them aloud to yourself, write them down again and don’t feel weird about taping them to your wall.  Reading motivational and inspirational books such as The Secret or Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff (available on Amazon here, affiliate link) will only add to the growing positivity within you.

In addition to these things you must also learn to be thankful for what you have and where you are in life.  Simply choosing to be thankful for what you already have can do far more for your life than being upset about what you don’t have.  Gratitude helps you feel better and see the good things in life and an attitude of gratitude will allow positivity to radiate outward from your life.

To take it to the next level find others to surround you and support you on your positive pathway.  Replacing the negative people in your life with positive ones will only serve to multiply your efforts to grow and succeed. While you learn to build them up they will help to build you up as well. For quite a number of folks, they’ve found hope and joy in the supernatural love of the almighty Jesus.  The simple truth of the Bible and the unconditional love of God will do more for your mindset than any book or human could ever do. If you’ve not come to a place in your heart to accept the realities of Jesus perhaps one day you will; there’s no greater source of joy than placing your hope and trust in Jesus.

Addressing Negativity in Others

A Hand Thumbs Up

Negativity is like an infectious communicable disease; when someone around you is negative it will bring everyone else down.  Since we obviously can’t physically change other people, how are we to address the negativity in others?

Perhaps the first thing that you can do to address negativity in others is to talk to them about it.  Sometimes simply pointing out that someone is being negative (and that it is effecting you and others) is all it takes to change an attitude.  Of course this has to be done with tact and in a way that shows that you truly care about this person as well.  Yelling at them to “stop being negative” will likely not have a positive effect on them.  You must sit down with them, preferably in private, and explain that the negative behaviors only serve to breed more negativity and things won’t get better until we all can change our attitudes. Bill Purvis of Cascade Hills, Georgia, said, “You are never persuasive when you are abrasive.”

Next, it would be wise to dive into their mind to find what is causing their negativity in the first place.  The reasons could be anything under the sun so be prepared to actively listen while asking questions to help discover the origin of their attitude.  Once you’ve found the root cause of the issue you can begin collaborating to develop solutions to remedy the situation. In some cases, the people in our circle just want your attention and to be heard; showing that you care and listening to them might be all that’s needed to address the issue. Furthermore, offering compliments and words of encouragement can do wonders for curing negativity as well.

A heart drawn in the sand on a beachThe Profound Effect of Positivity When Dealing With Others

A great example of the power of positivity is how a coworker of mine handles irate customers and angry people. In general he likes to use a technique that he calls “killing them with kindness.”  He usually lets the people he deals with talk themselves tired while also maintaining a smile and an actively listening ear.  The customer usually does most of the talking but when my coworker gets an opportunity to speak he expels nothing but calm, kind words to them. My coworker’s positive attitude is so contagious that he usually leaves customers happy even when they don’t get what they want or their issue couldn’t be resolved. The effect is simply amazing.

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