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While in your career you’ll meet people who’ll encourage and motivate you, you’ll also run into a fairly large number of negative people. These are those people who’ll nag, crib, gossip, be mean, rude and generally have an unpleasant vibe about them. You’ll find it hard to avoid them as there’ll be plenty of them in your workplace. They’ll discourage you, spread rumors and give you a feeling of less worth and insignificance. It’s a horrible feeling to have, not to say the least.
Unfortunately, there’s no magic wand that can make all such negative people disappear. Nor can you transform them into positive thinkers (well not that easily). However, what you can do is learn to deal with them so that your work isn’t negatively impacted and your workplace is more pleasant. Try some of these tactics and you’ll achieve your goal:
1. Define Boundaries
You know how you seem to feel pressured into sitting through a dragging conversation with negative people? Don’t! Listening to their negative attitude will brush off on you so don’t let it. Setting boundaries of how much you’ll put up with is essential to staying positive and avoiding their destructive chatter. Sometimes negative people are hard to avoid because your work requires you to interact with them. You can’t control that aspect, but you can control your level of engagement with them. While you won’t be able to directly spell it out for them, you could limit your interactions with these negative people by keeping the conversations short and to the point.
2. Employee Cleansing
The old saying “one bad apple can spoil the bunch” couldn’t be more true. Your organization culture is a vital part of your company’s success. Before you know it, harboring negative people will lead to the spread of negative behavior and habits like wild fire. That’s something you can’t afford as negative people not only damage your reputation they’ll also impact your business success. That’s why it’s important for you to take necessary steps that’ll cleanse your workplace of negative people. Start by counselling such individuals and encouraging them to alter their behavior and mindset into positive energy. If that fails, it’s probably best to part ways.
3. Don’t Overanalyze
Negative people generally behave irrationally and nonsensically. Much of what they say and do doesn’t really mean more than baseless rants. Some even go as far as creating chatter just to spread malicious rumors. If you try to decode what they mean or why they do such negative things you’ll waste your valuable time with not much result or sense. I know it’s not easy because sometimes these things just “get to us”. However, since you know the outcome of all your pondering will result in never being able to make sense of their behavior you may as well spare yourself the agony. Do whatever it takes to detach yourself from negative people and their issues.
4. Positivity Overload
One way to kill negativity is to submerge yourself with so much positivity that there’s no way in for negative feelings. I’m talking about positivity overload that’ll keep you happier, focused and energized. One way to do that is to interact with positive people – at work, home and other gatherings. Positive people have a great way of making you feel good regarding just about anything. And that’s what you want in your life. Anytime you feel that your emotions are getting the best of you or that negativity is creeping in, reach out to your network of positive people who can help you steer back and stay calm.
5. Focus on Yourself
You love your job, right? You love the company you work for and, generally speaking, the people you work with. So why let negative people ruin it all for you? Why let yourself be the victim of their games and put you in an unhappy place? Instead of letting negative people distract and deviate you from your purpose and goals, stay focused on why you’re here and what you’re aiming for. After all, negative people are just outside noise – tune them out and you’ll stay positive, focused and happier.
Negative people will be everywhere and working their ways to instill anxiety in you. However, by practicing some of these tips you just might be able to overpower them and maintain your positive outlook. Who knows, maybe some of your positivity may just brush off on them!
This article originally appeared in Paul Keijzer.