“People who try to bring you down every day aren’t important in your life, so you better treat their opinions as such.” ~Terry Mark
Whether you can classify them as narcissists or not, negative people seem to be everywhere you turn. This makes it incredibly difficult to keep your energy up – they drain the life out of a positive person.
When you’re struggling with recovery from narcissistic abuse, the effect can be more profound. When you’re living or working with a toxic person of any kind, it’s even more difficult to keep your head in the game. To put it mildly, negative people can have an impact on your attitude and your day – and if you’re an empath, it can feel impossible to escape. But there is hope for us empaths yet – and there are ways to mitigate the effect that negative people have on you.
How Do You Stay Positive When You’re Surrounded by Negative People?
Practice these strategies to avoid allowing negative people to negatively impact your life:
- Understand that you can only control yourself, but you can influence others. You can’t snap your fingers and make the people around you take a more positive view of the world. But you can control yourself and how you choose to react to their negativity. (Focus on what you CAN control, not what you can’t!)You might even be able to sway people over to your way of thinking a little bit. Set a good example and be a positive influence on those around you. Accept people for who they are. It’s just easier that way.
- Be grateful. One way to maintain a positive attitude is to remind yourself of the positive. When you’re feeling run down by the negativity around you, make a quick mental list of the things in your life that you’re thankful for. It will give your mood a quick boost.
- Remember that it’s not about you. Everyone has their challenges and issues. There’s no reason to be upset that someone has a negative attitude. It likely doesn’t have anything to do with you at all. It could be circumstances in their life or their basic nature. Just keep on doing what you’re doing.
- You have the choice to be positive or negative. You can choose to be affected or not by the people around you. Focus on yourself and keep your chin up. Take care of your business and let others view the world however they choose.
- Speak up. Sometimes it can be helpful to tell people to just cut it out. Many people will push until someone calls them on their behavior. Have a frank talk with someone that’s perpetually negative. Maybe they’re not aware of the impact they’re having on others.
- Spend time with positive people. Recharge your batteries with the positive energy of other positive people. Get away from those negative people and spend time with people full of positive attitude. It doesn’t take long to recenter yourself when you surround yourself with the right people.
- Make the most of your time alone. Make the most of the time you have to yourself. Do things you really enjoy doing. Read positive affirmations. Watch feel-good movies. Put your attention on positivity. It can be like armor against negative people.
- Headphones can help. If the situation permits, put on some headphones or earbuds. What you can’t hear can’t bother you. Consider listening to a positive podcast or music that makes you feel good. If your work situation allows this, it would be silly not to take advantage of it.
- Stay away. There are plenty of people in your life who aren’t essential – in fact, many are optional. Stay away from negative people that you don’t have to associate with. You have some control over who is part of your life and who is not.
Things to Remember:
- Negative people will drag you down if you let them. Take steps to minimize the impact they have on your life.
- Practice gratitude each day, and you can maintain a positive perspective.
- Block negative people out with headphones and stay away from as many negative people as possible.
- Negative people will always be around, but you can deal with them and still be a positive person.
Angela Atkinson is a Certified Life Coach and the author of more than 20 books on narcissism, narcissistic abuse recovery and related topics. A recognized expert on narcissism and narcissistic personality disorder who has studied and written extensively on narcissistic relationships since 2006, Atkinson was inspired to begin her work as a result of having survived toxic relationships of her own.
Atkinson offers trauma-informed coaching and has certifications in life coaching, level 2 therapeutic model, CBT coaching, integrative wellness coaching, and NLP. She is a certified trauma support coach and certified family trauma professional. She also has a professional PTSD counseling certification. Her mission is to help those who have experienced the emotional and mental devastation that comes with narcissistic abuse in these incredibly toxic relationships to (re)discover their true selves, stop the gaslighting and manipulation and move forward into their genuine desires – into a life that is exactly what they choose for themselves.
Along with her solution-focused life coaching experience, Atkinson’s previous career in journalism and research helps her to offer both accurate and understandable information for survivors of abuse in a simple-to-understand way that helps to increase awareness in the narcissistic abuse recovery community. Atkinson founded QueenBeeing.com Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support, the SPANily Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support Groups and the Life Makeover Academy. In her life coaching practice, Atkinson’s clients enjoy her personalized approach that allows and encourages them to become the best possible versions of themselves and to succeed in doing what they love most. She offers individual and group coaching for victims and survivors of narcissistic abuse at NarcissisticAbuseRecovery.Online and NarcissismSupportCoach.com.