Getting rid of the negativity in our lives can be quite tricky. Most of the time, we don’t even realize that we have been stuck deep in them to the point that we think they are a necessary part of life. There’s a cliche that goes, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”. For most instances, it’s true. I believe that at some points in our lives, we have to go through difficulties as they also play a vital part in making us better persons. However, there are subtle negativities in our lives that mask themselves as a “normal” part of life. These things can be anything, our friends, family members, and even ourselves.
Why identifying the negativities surrounding you is so important.
Recognizing these negative things that surround you is the very first step you need to take to overcome them. Once you do, you can start to work towards getting rid of them and creating a much positive environment for yourself.
Sadly, negativity is everywhere, and more often than not we let ourselves be affected by it, without knowing how to fight back. But don’t let yourself get discouraged, you can beat that feeling and switch the negativity into a much blissful outlook.
#1: Check your own thoughts.
Sometimes, the first source of negativity in our lives is ourselves, and we don’t even realize it. We tend to think nothing but negative things, and that ends up affecting us on a deeper level.
In social media, for example, one of your Facebook friends, who you have not seen in years is very active in posting her travel, food trip, and happy family pictures. At first, you are fond of seeing these wonderful photos, but then you start comparing your seemingly stagnant life to these seemingly perfect life photos. Eventually, without being conscious about it, a seed of envy will be sowed in your chest. Then, every time that friend’s pictures pop up in your feed, you feel a heaviness in your heart that you couldn’t really figure where it is coming from.
In cases like this, the source of negativity is YOU. It’s not your friend’s fault that she has these photos and experience to share, nor is it her responsibility to make you feel comfortable with her posts. It is YOU who needs a change of perspective.
Learn how to check your own negative thoughts and switch them into positive ones. Stop yourself when you notice you are going down that spiral and try to change your way of thinking into something more positive. When I am feeling insecure, or beginning to think ill of other people who have really never done anything against me, what I would do is pray that God helps me build a heart that is ungrudging. I would remind myself that I have so many blessings that I have not even prayed for but was faithfully showered to me by His grace. This thought would take me back to my feet, and realize that being envious is tantamount to being ungrateful for all the sustenance that God has poured into my life.
#2: Toxic relationships
Recognizing a toxic relationship is difficult because you don’t realize you are in one until it is too late. If you are feeling unappreciated, worried, unwanted, or emotionally manipulated most of the time, then chances are you are in a toxic relationship. Because these people are close to our hearts, we don’t even notice that they are micro-adding to our stress level that builds up and become destructive in a long shot.
This applies to partners, family members, friends, literally anyone. If you ever find yourself in a relationship like this, know how to express your feelings and kindly walk away or distance yourself from that person.
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Suggested reading: 10 Signs that You are in a Toxic Relationship
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Don’t let them ruin your good energy and take over your life. You are incredibly important, and do not deserve anyone’s negative energy ruining your own! It isn’t easy, but cutting down a toxic relationship is one of the best most freeing decisions you’ll do in your life.
#3: If it’s not helping you, it’s gotta go.
This kinda goes hand in hand with the previous tip, and it works just as well. If there is something or someone that it isn’t helping you grow and become the person you want to be, it’s gotta go.
In your work, for example, if you have just been dragging yourself to work every single day, then don’t be afraid to quit. You might say, it’s hard to find jobs these days, but hey! That’s just an excuse you tell yourself because you are afraid of change. I’ve always been an advocate of this: whether it’s relationship or work, or anything that doesn’t help you grow, and worse giving you anxiety and stress, it’s gotta go! Nothing is more important than your mental health.
This applies to different persons and situations in your life. If it isn’t bringing you happiness and joy, but rather worries, then it is time to end that situation and let it go.
Focus on things that will actually help you become the person you’ve always wanted to be and forget to try to make things that don’t bring anything good into your life work. Focus on yourself, in the things that make you happy, and watch everything flourish as it should.
A friend in high school told me, and I always carry this with me, “Only YOU can hurt yourself.” It always helps me keep a positive outlook, and this has built up a concrete idea in my mind, that how ever awful other people might be towards me, the only one with the power to scar my heart is myself. From then on, I started to become more mindful of how I process unpleasant things that are happening outside of my environment.
Over the years. I also developed a thought habit, “Only you can help yourself.” It’s true that a supportive environment can help you grow and achieve your goals. But if you have been lucky to be placed in an environment where you always have to battle your way out, no other people can help you beat the odds but yourself. This is your battle, even if your friends and family provide you with heavy artillery, it is still you who need to fire them.