When I realize that someone or something is toxic, I don’t want to be around it or them. I mean, there are some people and places that are just plain negative. And it is toxic, meaning it quickly seeps into your personality if you are around it long enough. Have you ever met anyone born into a family that is still stuck in the 1950s? More often than not, that regressive mindset permeates into the offspring and it is perpetuated. The same is true of friendships and workplaces. Do you realize that your friends who are always complaining are the ones you call the least? I used to be that person. Do you want to know why? Because I hated my job and I didn’t see a light at the end of the tunnel. But, I have since realized that, whether I like my job or not, I can address its ills but then speak on how blessed I am in other areas of my life, such as my spiritual, physical, and marital. See, life happens. Negativity happens. But you cannot dwell on it or you too will become negative. So, when you see negativity permeating into your life, that’s the time to find something that really cheers you up. For me, even when I’m having a terrible day at work, I go home and I know Desirée will be there. And, chances are, dinner will be great. And I may have something really dope to blog about. And I can figure out some strategy for the church’s social media accounts. And, before you know it, I’m out of my funk. You have to offset life’s negativity but, not only that, you have to develop an exit strategy.
Finding something positive in the face of negativity is only the first half of the battle. Then you have to get away from the bad. If it’s a work culture that you cannot impact for the better, commit to applying to 1-2 new jobs before bed every evening. If it’s a friendship that is draining the energy out of you, see if you can either lift that person’s spirits or it may be time to distance yourself. Even if it’s a marriage (not at all an advocate of divorce), find something to spark the relationship up and seek counseling. The thing is, you cannot live surrounded by negativity and it not bring you down. So change it. Please, and thank you.
Make professional development a priority.