I am generally a very positive person. And I like it that way. In fact, I absolutely love when people tell me it’s one of the reasons they enjoy following Lake Shore Lady. Mission accomplished!
That being said, even “positive” people deal with negativity. It affects all of us – whether it’s from the news, comments or messages on social media, personal struggles, playing the comparison game, work frustrations… you name it. But it’s really not about the absence of these obstacles. It’s about how we deal with them! And that’s what I want to talk about today, specifically how to deal with negativity.
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How to Deal with Negativity
Start your day with something positive.
I recently downloaded the Shine App, thanks to Elena (my favorite barre teacher and all around amazing gal). Basically, you set a time for the app to send you a message of encouragement every Monday through Friday. Along with the quote, they also send you awesome articles, and even ask you questions/encourage you to take action about a specific topic, so you can put your best foot forward that day. I’ve found this to work extremely well for me, because while I’d love to start each morning with yoga or a long walk – that’s just not always a possibility. But this, along with a cup of coffee, has totally improved even my grumpiest mornings.
Get a work out.
Endorphins are REAL, guys. And as much as I looove a good yoga class to help me feel more grounded and positive, ANY movement will do. Pick your fancy, sweat it it out, and I promise you’ll feel better about whatever has you down.
Feel it, vent to someone… and then let it go.
I’m never going to tell you to ignore what’s bothering you until it goes away. Mostly because that’s not my style! I’m an emotional person, and I need to feel things before I can let them go. But I also think talking to someone helps immensely. This can be your significant other, a best friend, a therapist… doesn’t matter! But I usually find that if I can talk it out with someone close to me, releasing it from my mind after that is so much easier.
Take a break from technology.
Feeling frustrated with work? Comparing yourself to people on Instagram? Shut your computer, put down your phone, and go for a walk or pick up a book. So many of us are constantly connected, whether it’s because we feel we have to be or not – so taking a break, even for 5 minutes, is helpful.
Spend time with people you love.
To piggy back off of the point above, disconnecting from work and technology is so important – and can do wonders for your general positivity. I always find it easier to battle things that get me down when I know I have the support of the people I care about most. Quality time with them is also a practice in staying present. Can you let go of what was bothering you earlier that day and just be in the moment?
Remember that not everyone is going to like you, and that’s okay.
I’m a people pleaser. I’ll admit it, I want everyone to like me – sometimes to a fault! So when someone leaves a mean comment or message, I take it to heart. But since I’ve been doing this a while, I’ve found that it’s not really just about being liked – it’s the way people speak to each other that bothers me. I’ve had people disagree or express their concern with something I’ve written/posted about in totally respectful ways… and then I’ve had people looking to pick a fight. I’m learning to respond to the latter with as much grace as possible… and then move on. It’s hard, but realizing that not everyone is going to like you and everything you have to say is pretty freeing. I’ll probably always get a little upset when a mean comment comes in, but I’m learning to not let it ruin my whole day!
Don’t get sucked into the news first thing in the morning or last thing at night.
I feel a very strong need to be as informed as I can, especially now that there is oh so much to be informed about. But over this past year (and a half?), being educated about what’s going on in the world has cost me plenty of positivity and a decent amount of sleep. I knew I needed to figure out a way to stay in the know without letting it affect my productivity, so I decided to limit when I can catch up on the news. This might be just a weird thing I do, but I wanted to share it with all of you in case you’ve been struggling with this, too! Recently, I’ve been reading The Skimm sometime in the morning, and then catching up on the evening news/reading more articles around dinner time. And that’s it! Starting my day with something positive instead of news has helped me avoid getting in a negative funk all day. And no upsetting articles after 9pm means I can actually fall asleep without melatonin again ?
Comparing yourself to other people creates unnecessary negativity. Stop it!
As I talked about above, there is so much real negativity in the world – why create more for yourself?! Another woman being successful does not mean you are a failure. And if she looks skinny in a bikini on vacation, that doesn’t mean you should feel inadequate. I completely understand that this is easier said than done, but take note the next time these thoughts creep into your mind. What are your biggest triggers? And can you acknowledge those and then adjust your mindset?
Actively do something positive.
Feeling stuck in your career? Research new job opportunities or invest in your business. Sad about something going on in the world? Volunteer or donate to a charity or non profit that helps the cause. Comparing yourself to people who have a “better body” than you? Go shopping for healthy groceries. Actively doing something to help the situation can be a huge step away from all that negativity.
Find something to be grateful for every day.
I know it sounds cheesy, but this is the most important point of this whole post. We can all find moments of gratitude even on our worst days. Some days, you might be grateful for something absolutely incredible! Others, you might simply be grateful for a bed to sleep in at night. But acknowledging that whole scope is incredibly powerful. And honestly, I think it’s the key to dealing with negativity.
Now obviously I’m not a doctor or a therapist, so I am in no way claiming that these tips will help with depression or anxiety. These are merely things that have helped me with the negativity I’ve personally had to deal with. Hopefully a few of you can relate!
How do you deal with negativity?
Do any of these tips help, or do you have other things that work for you? I’d love to know if you’re willing to share in the comments below!!
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PS. The Shopbop Sale ends April 14th! You might also like 30 Things I Learned Before 30 and You Are More Than Your Physical Appearance.