Dealing with negative people

Dealing with negative people

We’ve all experienced the side effects of a negative friend, colleague or co-worker – someone who complains endlessly about their job but never offers any solutions; or a good friend who speaks unfavourably about others and creates drama. These negative people and their destructive energy can disrupt your focus and sideline your goals.

Try these strategies to deal better with negative people in your life.

Set boundaries

Don’t feel obliged to sit and listen to a negative person. Their negative energy will seep into your own life and affect your attitude, so keep your interactions with them short. You can’t control the behaviour, but you can control whether or not you engage.

Weed out negative employees

Your company culture is a critical part of your brand. One toxic staff member can affect the entire culture of your business. Formerly positive employees may show signs of dissatisfaction, or worse, they may begin to adopt the behaviour habits of their negative co-worker. Convey your concerns and give the person a chance to change. If the behaviour continues, it might be time to let them go.

Choose your battles

Don’t engage every time someone irritates you. Not only will you be seen as argumentative, you’ll be welcoming the toxicity into your own life. Ignore any negative comments and walk away from unnecessary conflict. You’ll be respected for taking the high road.

Don’t over-analyse the situation

Negative people can sometimes behave irrationally. You will waste valuable time and energy if you try to make sense of their actions. Do not become emotionally invested in their issues.

Develop a support system

Build a network of positive friends, acquaintances and professional contacts. When you feel you’re drowning in negativity, call a friend or mentor and calmly explain the situation. Often an objective person can provide you with a different perspective or a new approach.

Your happiness and wellbeing are too important to let anyone’s negative opinion or rude comments bring you down or affect how you view yourself. Remain positive and, with any luck, your positivity will be unattractive to toxic people and they will gradually fall away naturally.

How do you deal with negativity in your business?

Adapted from an article by Jacqueline Whitmore,

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