“Just think of any negativity that comes at you as a raindrop falling into the ocean of your bliss.” ~ Maharishi Mahesh Yogi
Take heart and protect yourself against those who plunder your positivity with these practical strategies:
21 Ways to Stay Blissfully Positive Around Negative People
1. Have a one-person morning party.
As a change from (or supplement to) meditating, start the day loudly: sing lustily in the shower, listen to upbeat music and dance the day in to release feel-good endorphins.
2. Be a caricaturist.
Imagine those poor unhappy folks as caricatures to deflate the impact of their words.
3. Mix up your routine.
Before beginning a regimented activity like work, put yourself in a positive mood by varying your morning routine, even if it means getting up a little earlier. Take a short walk, meet up for breakfast with other positive friends, or do something creative.
4. Splash some color into the world.
Choose a bright outfit – orange or yellow are best for optimism.
5. Give yourself a temporary tattoo.
Draw a smiley face on your inner arm each morning. Gently massage this when caught in negative conversations during the day to remind yourself of happy thoughts.
6. Let go of the need to see the glass as either half full or half empty.
Picture instead that you have already drunk that glass of positivity to the bottom, and that the glass will always be refilled.
7. Affirm your positivity.
Repeat to yourself out loud, “I am a rock of positivity and optimism” to help keep you upbeat throughout the day.
8. Be a cheerful chatterbox.
Start conversations, and be prepared with a couple of happy topics to ensure you set a positive tone.
9. Use open body language.
Be open, big, alert and happy. Do this consciously, as unconscious mirroring of others’ negative body language is easy to fall into.
10. Bend the rules of etiquette.
Don’t look people in the eye when they are spouting negativity – look at their mouths instead. They’ll still think you are paying attention, but their words will have less impact.
11. Change the tone.
Seize upon a negative theme in the conversation and turn it around by telling a positive version based on your own experience.
12. Interrupt their negativity with a sweet.
Yes – offer them a treat. Use this break in the conversation to restart it in a positive way.
13. Understand what they are really saying.
Don’t take it personally. Gossip and miserable stories are often really tales of low self-worth or insecurity (we could all be called “negative” sometimes). Hear their real message, feel empathy and help them turn their mood around with some genuine, kind words.
14. Smell that positivity.
Wear a scent that uplifts you.
15. Mentally thank negative people.
Thank them silently for sharing their negative story or mood, but politely and firmly reject it in your mind at the same time.
16. Open the window.
Imagine all that negativity dissipating into the ether.
17. Pin up your manifesto.
Put a sign on your desk or in your office so people can see it before they speak to you: “If you haven’t got anything good to say, say it somewhere else.”
18. Make them dump their negativity.
Put a bin in front of your desk with a sign reading: “Please Dump Your Negativity Here.”
19. Take an oath.
Tell others you have taken a positivity oath and are sworn to optimism. If nothing else, this will freak negative people out sufficiently to leave you alone. You can even ask people to call you out if you are being negative – but don’t get defensive if they do!
20. Spread that happy state around.
Send negative people you interact with a link to subscribe to a source of positive daily inspiration. Copy this, then paste and personalize it:
Loved talking to you this morning, but noticed you seemed a little down. I’ve sent you this link to a wonderful site that helped me when I was feeling a bit out of sorts.
If all else fails…
21. Tell them you have an allergy to negativity.
Explain you are worried your neck will swell up and warn them they might need to call 911.
Staying Blissfully Positive
It’s ghastly to be surrounded by negative people, isn’t it?
You can’t exactly jump up screaming, “Get away from me, doom-mongers!”
But you can maintain your precious positivity, even when others are stinking up your emotional atmosphere.
Imagine being totally immune to negativity, even when surrounded by it.
Imagine your positivity as an impregnable shield.
Imagine staying joyfully content no matter what is going on around you.
You can absolutely keep from being dragged down by others’ pessimism and despair.
It’s not going to be quick and easy like a bowl of instant noodles, but you can do it a step at a time.
Start building your positivity defenses with any of the above techniques that speak to you.
Look forward to every day more and more as they become habits.
Armor yourself against your negative surroundings with your newly bulletproofed bliss.