Negativity is a powerful force that can profoundly impact our lives. It can be defined as a feeling or attitude of pessimism, hostility, resentment, or all the above. Negativity is like a disease affecting the people we love around us.
Suppose the symptom of negativity isn’t recognized and treated. In that case, it will get worse until it’s too late and the effects of negativity have taken over entirely. But often, we don’t recognize what negativity does to us until we reach that breaking point. Like an assassin navigating through the night, negativity strikes us when we least expect it, which can overshadow our positive energy.
The Effects of Negativity
Negativity can be an undesired life-altering state of mind that can affect everything you do in your life. It can adversely affect your work life, home life, relationships, and hobbies that you enjoy. When we let negativity simmer within us, it can reach a boiling point that can adversely affect us mentally and physically.
Negativity can have a severe impact on our well-being. It can drain our energy, make us less productive, and sabotage our relationships. Negativity can also rewire our brains for negativity, making it harder for us to see the positive side of things.
If we want to protect our mental health and well-being. In that case, it’s essential to be aware of the effects of negativity and take steps to counter them all the while striving to be positive.
Here are some of the ways negativity can impact us:
1. Negativity Drains your Energy
Negativity takes up a lot of mental energy. When we’re focused on negative thoughts, we’re expending valuable resources that could be used elsewhere.
You can focus on a passion or an ambition that can leave you more fulfilled. However, negativity may lead to fatigue and burnout if it gets out of control.
2. Negativity makes us less productive
Negativity can interfere with our ability to focus and be productive. When negative thoughts bog us down, it’s hard to see the bright side of things or find the motivation to get work done.
Not getting things done will not only prolong the time it takes to complete your responsibilities, but it will inevitably cut into time to decompress.
3. Negativity sabotages our relationships
Negativity can put a strain on our personal relationships. When we’re focused on negativity, we may withdraw from others or lash out in anger. This can damage the bonds we have with those closest to us, and even wreck future relationships that would have been a positive influence.
4. Negativity Rewires our Attitude
Negativity can actually change our outlook on life. Chronic negativity can lead to changes in the brain’s negativity bias, making us more likely to focus on negative thoughts and experiences. And when that happens, everything we experience in life becomes negative and the joys we once had are no longer present.
How to Spot Negativity
Spotting negativity is a difficult process, very seldomly do we ever want to focus on our negative traits or recognize the negativity that surrounds us. It’s very easy to keep our heads down and sulk in our sorrow. But that doesn’t do you are anyone around you any good. Negativity can be contagious. If you’re not careful, it can infect your entire life and bring you down.
Here are some ways to spot negativity so you can avoid it:
Complaining is a key indicator of negativity, regardless if it’s warranted, most of the time it offers nothing but a cheap sense of relief (if that). However, if you find yourself complaining often or if you are around people who complain. You will eventually wear down and negativity will start to grow from within, and before you know it, the sense of relief that you used to get from complaining will disappear.
2. Negative Body Language
Having negative body language is a more subtle trait to have, we aren’t usually standing in front of a mirror to even notice what our body language is communicating. But if you catch yourself slouching, having your arms crossed during fun social gatherings, or on your phone shut off from society then you might be going through something deeper on the inside.
Criticizing is the cousin of complaining if you catch yourself constantly jealous or judgmental over other people’s success. Then you might be in a negative state.
However, if you catch yourself happy to hear and see other people’s failures or catastrophes, then that would be a clear indicator that negativity is taking over and that you should act fast to ensure it doesn’t get worst.
4. Pay Attention To Your Emotions
If you find yourself feeling negative more often than usual, or these signs are resonating with you, then you may need to take action immediately. Negativity can be contagious and if left alone it can grow into something that can overtake your well-being and happiness which is something that will set us back in our journey through life.
How to Counter Negativity
If we want to protect our mental health and well-being. It’s important to be aware of the effects of negativity and take steps to counter them. But that will require self-awareness and an honest look within yourself to keep disciplined and moving forward from the shadows of negativity.
Some simple ways to do this include:
1. Make time for positive activities
Schedule time for activities that make you happy and help you relax. This could include reading, spending time outdoors, or talking to friends and family. Keeping your mind occupied is a key component to battling negative connotations that you might be having. Once positive activities are a part of your routine, you will start seeing positive change.
2. Challenge your negative thoughts
When you catch yourself thinking negative thoughts, you will need to take a moment to question yourself and work your way through them. Challenging your thoughts will require a logical way of thinking.
You can ask yourself a few questions such as:
- Are these thoughts valid?
- Are these thoughts helpful in any way?
- What can you do to change your negative thoughts?
Our thoughts and the way we think is a powerful quality that the mind has over us, navigating our way to positivity is a difficult journey. But, we need to be consistent in traveling if we want to be positive in our life.
3. Practice gratitude
Take time each day to reflect on the things you’re grateful for. This could be anything from your health to a beautiful sunset you saw. Focusing on the positive can help shift your mindset away from negativity.
Being grateful and counting all of the blessings we have can really put things into perspective for ourselves. A lot of times we really don’t understand how lucky we are until we quantify them.
4. Seek professional help
If negativity is impacting your life in a severe or long-lasting way, it may be helpful to seek professional help. A therapist can assist you in exploring the root of your negativity and developing coping strategies to manage it.
How to start being positive
No matter where you are in life, it’s always possible to start being positive. It might not be easy to get there, but it’s definitely worth it.
Many people who are positive tend to focus on the journey instead of positivity being the end goal. For example, many people see reaching the state of positivity as the starting line instead of an end goal.
Here are a few tips to get you started:
1. Make a conscious effort to focus on the positive
This means making an active choice to think about positive things, rather than dwelling on negative thoughts. Every time a negative thought pops into your head, try to counter it with something positive.
For example, if you’re feeling down about your job, remind yourself of all the things you love about it, and why you are there in the first place. Remember where you were when you applied and why you wanted the position to begin with.
2. Surround Yourself With Positive People
When you’re around positive people, you’ll start to see the good in situations that might otherwise seem negative. Surrounding yourself with good positive people can take you out of some of the darkest places people dwell in. Even if you aren’t good friends, having positive energy surround you is crucial.
3. Do something positive for someone else
One of the best ways to feel positive is to do something positive for someone else. Whether it’s volunteering your time, donating to a worthy cause, or simply doing a kind deed, helping others will make you feel good about yourself.
Negativity can take its toll on us mentally and physically, and the worst thing about negativity is that it can creep on us when we least expect it. That’s why it’s important to keep vigilant about how we feel and take proactive steps when we start feeling that negative vibe.
Of course, that’s easier said than done. In life, we must remember that it’s a lot like a roller coaster. There will be difficulties. But keep positive, do your best, and enjoy the ride because, at the end of the day, roller coasters are supposed to be fun.
Authors Book Recommendation
Stop Overthinking by Nick Trenton
We live in a world where anxiety and negativity run rampant in our lives, but sometimes reading a book can help you climb out of the rabbit hole. Stop Overthinking is a book about how to stop letting your thoughts control your life. It provides practical advice on how to deal with anxiety and worry, and how to find peace of mind.
The book is aimed at people who tend to overthink things, and who want to learn how to better manage their thoughts. Stop Overthinking can help you learn how to control your thoughts, and how to live a more peaceful and enjoyable life.