Do they bring you joy, whatever that constitutes for you? Maybe laughter, thought provoking discussions, a sense of belonging, security, love or acceptance?
Hopefully you’ve identified a number of people in your mind who fall into this category. They’re the ones who help you top up your reserve of energy, happiness and motivation!
Now, let’s consider if there are people in your life who didn’t make the shortlist.
The once who bring you down, make you feel insecure or who’s negativity is rubbing off on you. Just like the previous lot top up your reserves, this lot drains them.
Miserable, domineering and negative people can, and do, have a big negative influence on those around them.
If this rings bells with you in your life, it may be time to do a social audit of the people you hang out with and make sure they bring you benefits rather than pain.
Here are 5 reasons why it’s worth reducing the time spent with overly negative people:
1. Feel guilty
Negative people often make those close to them feel obscurely guilty, as if they are somehow responsible and to blame for their misery. If this is happening in your life, you probably find yourself walking on eggshells to make sure that you don’t say or do anything that will upset the person further.
2. Be dominated
Negative people can exert power over those around them who have to walk on eggshells. This allows them to dominate and dictate unhealthily within relationship(s).
3. Increase self doubt
Being negative and miserable about life in general can give the impression of being knowledgeable and intelligent, burdened by a form of deep, profound, philosophical knowledge that others (happy, shallow people) can’t possibly appreciate. If this is happening in your life, you may soon find yourself doubting your own intelligence and worth.
4. Reduce intelligence
Exposure to negativity is scientifically proven to reduce our intelligence. Standing next to a negative person does to the brain what standing next to a smoker does to the lungs! So avoid exposure to negativity like you would passive smoking. Not only will you feel happier, your brain will thank you too.
5. Mad mood
Moods are contagious. If you spend time will negative people, you’ll soon find yourself in a bad mood yourself.
I’m sure you agree, these are compelling reasons to choose your company carefully!
And remember, the best way to counteract the impact of negative people is to remain positive. In their company if possible (positivity is contagious too, so maybe you can help them gain new perspectives). Or simply make sure you hang out with others who are positive too!