It’s never easy to be around negativism. But beyond that, it can be quite toxic and detrimental, fostering a mindset of cynicism, fatalism, and even defeatism.
If you are surrounded by negative energy that’s coming from a coworker, partner, friend, or family member, you must learn how to protect yourself without engaging.
Here are six powerful strategies you can use to protect yourself against negative energies.
- Focus on solutions, not problems. Negative people tend to spend more time on problems than on solutions. What that usually sounds like is a lot of complaining, finding fault, and dissatisfaction. To stay positive, focus on creating solutions that work. If you meet resistance, look at strengths you can build on or simple steps to get the momentum started.
- Don’t feed the drama. Negative people need drama in their lives as much as they need oxygen. To take their breath away, stay positive and upbeat and refuse the bait, no matter how tempting. Work to keep things on time, calm, flexible, and even-keeled. When you do, you give them nothing to work with.
- Watch your boundaries. It’s a sad fact of life that you’re better off with some people out of your life. But you can’t accomplish the things you want to do in life if you are surrounded by negative energy–one of the most toxic and contagious forces on earth. Create and keep your boundaries from anyone who wants to break you down, even if they’re a family member or someone who thinks of themselves as a friend.
- Stop trying to fix everyone and everything. If you find yourself doing for others things that they could and should be doing for themselves, you’re not helping but enabling. Sometimes we can unintentionally produce negative energy by carrying people when they know how to walk, or we try to fix people when they weren’t broken, to begin with. Learn when to stay clear.
- Respond, but don’t react. A response flows from mental clarity and emotional strength and is chosen to produce the desired outcome; while a reaction is an uncontrollable reflex that flows from fear-based survival impulses. Stay clear of unthinking reactions and learn to respond thoughtfully in the face of negative energy.
- Take care of yourself. You can’t care for others if you can’t care for yourself. It is not selfish or vain to love yourself, take care of yourself, or to make your happiness a priority. Learning and practicing self-care will help keep you grounded and strong when you’re faced with negative energy.
Don’t underestimate the harm that negative energy can cause–learn how to protect yourself and be smart about it.