Ever notice how the kindest comment can make someone’s day, but just one negative comment can destroy someone’s week?
Why are the emotional effects of the negative so much more extreme than the positive?
This is an important topic. I find that there are tons of articles and posts about random acts of kindness, positivity, affirmations, and gratitude, but it needs to be known how negative words can drain our energy, and lead to trauma.
When someone kills your spirit it can literally feel like a car accident. You feel tired, hurt from the inside out, your body aches, and the struggle is real.
I truly believe that all people are inherently good. And yes, we all miscommunicate at times. Rarely do we mean to hurt someone, but sometimes things are said the wrong way. Even if you didn’t mean it, it’s important to genuinely apologize. The fact is, your words caused this person to hurt, and that’s all there is to it. It’s no one’s fault – it’s just cause and effect.
Why is it so hard for us to apologize? It’s the cure of any situation, but it’s so damn hard, right?
When I was younger, I used to wear my hair in a ponytail. One day I was wearing my hair down, and this guy turned to me and said, “Wow, I’ve never seen your hair like that. You look amazing. When you have it in that ponytail, you look awful.”
That “you looked awful” comment kind of retracted the “you look amazing” comment. That stuck with me for years, and even now I’m paranoid when I wear my hair in a pony. I feel like I need makeup, or a cute headband or something. This isn’t the best example, but you understand what I mean, right?
The worst is when it’s something you’re super excited about, and someone makes a snide or sarcastic comment to bring you down.
Excited Person: I can’t believe I lost all of that weight, and after a year of training, I finally just finished my first 5k! If you told me to do that two years ago, I would have laughed at you!
Disempowering Person: Easy. Anyone can do that.
Excited Person: It took me forever, but after all of my market research, and lots of roadblocks, I just created my first product!
Disempowering Person: Is there really any demand for that?
Excited Person: I entered the contest with no expectations, but I just won a trip to Europe!
Disempowering Person: Gross. I’d never go there.
Excited Person: I just got engaged!
Disempowering Person: To that loser boyfriend I met last week?
Here’s the thing…
This isn’t a reflection on you – it’s a reflection on them. If they’re putting down your happiness or success it’s because they’re projecting their insecurities on you.
This stuff is going to happen. It’s tricky because once these people get into your brain, it’s like a time machine. All of the sudden, you revert back to your old confidence levels, and forget all of the self work you’ve done to get where you are. Before you know it, you’re second guessing your decisions and feeling like a loser about your awesome accomplishments!
Am I right or amiright?
Here’s what you need to do:
1. Connect with your What and Why:
Even when you can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel – be clear on your dreams. For example, my dream is to have time and location freedom. I’ve only been able to tap into this since I left my last job. It’s been a long road, but I’m learning a lot, and for the first time – I’m not letting self-doubt bring me down, and I’m not letting anyone create uncertainty for me.
You can bet people have told me that I’m crazy, they’ve tried to talk me out of it, but I have complete clarity.
2. Take action towards your dreams:
I know it feels like your energy is drained, and you’re probably having a hard time getting yourself out of bed. The only way to get your spirit back is to take small steps towards your vision.
Stephen Covey from 7 Habits of Highly Effective People says to schedule your priorities, don’t prioritize your schedule. Maybe the first step is just writing out all of your priorities, choosing one, and then taking the first step towards it. Cross off the things that waste time or can wait, and just focus on progress and quick wins.
For example, if you want to find a new job, write down 5 actions and commit to just one a day. It could be reaching out to friends, revamping your resume, searching on indeed.com, updating your linkedin, or perhaps sending out just one resume.
It’s scary, but if you don’t take action, you won’t get anywhere. The only reason I’ve been able to get where I am now is because I took action, and I’ve learned from my mistakes. It’s because I moved forward even when there was fear, self doubt, and uncertainty. Don’t let anyone hold you back or tell you you’re limited in any way.
3. Surround yourself with people that believe in you:
These are people that not only believe in you, but also embody the qualities and lifestyle of the person you aspire to be. When you get in a rut or have doubt – you need people to contact to bring you up.
No, you don’t need to be dependent or validated, but you need an uplifting community. And, just as important – remove the people who don’t uplift you. Remove the people who bring you down and consistently kill your spirit.
Imagine if you weren’t ever around inspiring and like-minded people. Who would you learn from? I’m not saying you couldn’t do it on your own, but it’s a lot harder and a lot slower.
It makes such a difference if you can find communities that are going through the same things as you. Or, from people who are more successful, so you can be uplifted by their stories and encouragement.
4. Move Your Body:
For me it’s yoga, but you might love spin classes, walks in the park, or rock climbing. Whatever it is – find an activity where you can focus on exercise and health.
Exercise will help your sleep patterns, give you energy throughout the day, and help you make healthier choices in your life and diet.
This not only makes you feel better in your body, but gives you the time to slow down your mind, which will help you solve problems and get clarity.
5. Find a place that gives you energy and clears your mind:
When someone brings you down, and drains your energy, it can feel like your soul’s been ripped out of your chest and stomped on. Not to mention, it kills your motivation. It’s hard to get out of bed. Your mind will be cloudy. And, you’re probably crying a lot.
You need find your way back, and one of the best ways is go to a place that brings out the feelings you want to create within.
I go to a place that I associate with freedom.
I love anywhere with lots of nature. There’s a little place close to where I live called Dinky Dock filled with lots of trees, animals, and a gorgeous lake. People are kayaking, on boat tours, and playing in the water with their kids. I always see little duck families, and it makes me so happy.
I can just go there to sit, close my eyes, and the feeling of the breeze on my skin just sends the total feeling on freedom through my heart. Most of the time I bring my yoga mat, and it’s the surest way to put me back on my game.
It doesn’t happen overnight, but you need to recommit in each moment to get back to your normal abundant self.
Call a friend. Take a walk. Eat something healthy. Take a ride. Do whatever you need to do to get your energy back one step at a time.
Believe in yourself. Remind yourself why you’re doing what you’re doing, and know you’re going to be ok.
I believe in you.
Don’t ever give up.
Watch your words. If you need to stop and think before you say something – do it. If you put your foot in your mouth, and realize it later – apologize. The end 🙂
Share with me in the comments the feeling you want to bring out from within, and a place you associate with that feeling!