Does any of this sound familiar? Yup, it does for me too.
Negativity is contagious. Whether I start my day off on the wrong foot, or I am simply in the presence of someone who is throwing a pity party, negativity always has a way of creeping up on me.
Negative people surround themselves with negative people, so they don't have to feel so badly about being negative. Trust me, I have been there. Unfortunately, thanks to personal experience, I have found that being positive about a situation requires more effort than sulking in negativity; which seems backwards to me.
Once I am in that negative spiral of doom, it often feels impossible to get out of. The good news is, however, I have found quite a few ways to pull myself out and begin spiraling upward toward positivity.
Recovery from an eating disorder, for example, is notorious for sucking the happiness out of people. I am often asked how I have remained upbeat during this difficult time, and I think it is a combination of things. Don't get me wrong, I have my downer days, too, but I always know that tomorrow is a fresh start.
Ways to avoid the Negative Spiral of Doom:
1. Surround yourself with positive people. Just like negative people attract negative people, the same seems to be true for positive people attracting positive people.2. Don't take others negativity personally (I'm horrible at this one). Whether a person is a good mood or a bad mood, it has nothing to do with me; it is a choice they have made. Let me repeat that so it sinks in- it has nothing to do with me!3. Practice acts of kindness. By spreading good deeds and smiles, you are helping others climb out of the negative spiral. What could be better?4. Realize that life has its ups and downs. Life is never going to be perfect, so finding ways to go with the flow is a great place to start. It also helps to remember that tomorrow will bring a fresh start.5. Concentrate on the present moment. Getting caught up in the what-ifs and over thinking destroys any ounce of positivity I might have had. Period.6. Let go and move on. Sometimes, even though its really difficult, it is necessary to let go of certain things and people that bring you down. It might hurt for the time being, but in the long run it will only make me stronger.7. Lead by example. Fill your life with things that light your fire and make you feel good about yourself. Others will follow.8. Find a solution. Sure, a pity party might seem like the easiest thing to do when feeling down, but it only starts that negativity cycle. Do something proactive. Use your voice. Deal with the situation if possible.9. Lend a helping hand. Helping others get through a difficult time always makes me feel a little better. Even if all I can do to help is listen, knowing I helped is all I need.10. Gratitude, gratitude, gratitude. By focusing on the things that I do have, rather than the things I don't, I automatically feel more at peace with myself.
Above everything, I know I have spent too much of my life suffering and in pain. I have made a decision to be done with that. Some days I feel like that obnoxiously happy person that we all love to hate, but it sure beats being sucked into the Negativity Spiral of Doom.