How to stop being negativeThis is a tough one for me because I have an awful habit of being negative. A lot. In fact, I seem to get into these negative states for days at a time and I don’t know how to break them. Sometimes I actually enjoy being negative, like it’s an indulgence and I just want to stay in my crap-ass mood. And when I’m being negative, a lot of times it’s because I am jealous of other people and sometimes it makes me dislike them. My fiance said the other day that I was a hater. Wow, when he said that, my first thought was “No way!” but then I thought about it and I think he’s right. Sometimes I really AM a hater. I just hate because other people have what I want and life just sucks because it’s not giving me those same things.

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I am the type of person that wants to make a difference in the world (really, it’s true!), but when my negativity flows, it’s hard to be that change I wish to see. Last week I was in one of my negative moods for a few days and while I was in it, I was thinking I really wanted to get out, but I honestly didn’t know how to. I was feeling so down and everything seemed like it sucked and life was so hard, blah blah. So I confided in one of my best friends, Flo, over dinner last weekend that I really wanted to kick the negativity and that I didn’t want to just pretend to be happy, but I really wanted to be happy. She had just gotten back from a 3 week yoga retreat so I figured she’d have some good advice for me. ;) Here’s what she had to say and it really struck a chord with me:

  1. Many of life’s lessons are learned in the downs of life. There is a lot to be learned from the things that go wrong in your life. (In other words, make lemonade out of lemons).
  2. Stop and look at the beauty that surrounds you. When I feel myself getting aggravated or negative I try to remember to look up at the sky. Flo’s other suggestions were to notice the colors around you, take a deep breath and smell the air. Feel the ground under your feet. (In other words, actually stop and smell the roses.)
  3. And here’s the one that really got me: Gratitude. Truly being grateful for what you actually DO have is the best way to stop being a hater. And honestly, I do have quite a lot of good things in my life.

It’s funny, but the moment she said the Gratitude thing, I instantly felt better. And I mean instantly. I have a lot of things to be grateful for and I need to spend more time thinking about those things thank thinking about the things I do not have. Because when you think about it, there will always be something you don’t have, so what am I going to do? Spend the rest of my life being pissed off that I don’t have something I want? I believe they call those people spoiled brats!

The more I thought about it, the more I realized there were additional steps I could take to counter the negativity:

  1. When I feel like complaining about something, I try to say to myself “It could be worse, it could be (fill in the blank).” I find this makes me laugh about what I thought was so bad a minute ago.
  2. I’m kind of a road-rager. Not that I drive dangerously or throw things at people or any of that stuff. I just yell in my car a lot. No one can hear me, but I get so worked up all by myself in my car, that my blood starts to boil and my heart beats fast and I probably look like an idiot yelling in my car, lol! So in addition to taking a quick look at the sky (where nothing is happening that can actually bother me) I have made a new “no talking to myself out loud” rule while in the car. If I can’t say it out loud, it’s a lot harder to express the anger. If you have this issue too, try this sometime, it actually works!

That’s all I have, but it’s plenty to remember. If I think of anything new, I’ll add them to this post. I’ve also decided to start posting as often as I can remember to a list of things I am grateful for. Like I said, I’m hoping this blog will keep me accountable.

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4 Responses

  1. Laura on 17 Jan 2013

    Thank you so much for this post! I really needed to hear it! I get in a negative mood for days too and it is really rough on my relationships with the people I love!

    • marianney on 21 Feb 2013

      Hi Laura,
      I’m so glad you found this helpful and I’m actually really glad you found it when you did because you reminded me of it. I had forgotten some of the tips on here and was also being very negative lately! Who knew I could be so helpful!? ;)

  2. Liz on 24 Jun 2014

    Hi Laura,
    I’m so glad to hear I’m not all alone, friends have left being my friends because they say I’m negative, but I’ve had so many disappointments in my life, and after my son dying I have to paint a smile on my face daily, thank you for some tips, I will use them daily.

    • marianney on 18 Jul 2014

      Hi Liz,
      I’m so sorry to hear about your disappointments, especially your son. I can imagine that is something incredibly difficult to go through.

      My heart truly goes out to you and remember: your son would be heartbroken to know you are so sad and he wants you to be happy. Truly he does.

      God bless you,

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