For the Power of Positivity Theme Week, we’ve brought you a bunch of stories detailing the benefits of a positive mindset and how to implement one in your own life. But that’s a whole lot easier said than done, especially if the environment you work or go to school in tends to be a negative one. If that’s the case, here are five ways you can be a positive force in your workspace.
The first step is awareness: Recognize the negativity around you. Sometimes you can even feel your energy being drained by the words being spoken. If it feels bad or uncomfortable, then it’s negative. If you can identify what is happening, you can make good choices about handling it.
It all starts with you: In what ways are you contributing to the negativity around you? Are you listening to gossip or participating in conversations where the only focus is to denigrate, diminish or criticize? Remember, everything you say has an impact—so choose the words that respect people’s humanity and their right to be themselves.
Speak up: Tell the other person how you feel by saying, “This doesn’t work for me.” It’s nonjudgmental since you’re making it about you, not them. Also, people often don’t realize they are being negative. Point it out in a gentle, caring way: “Do you realize you are complaining?” If you say nothing, your silence conveys permission to continue.
Be constructive, positive, meaningful and beneficial: What is the point or purpose of what you’re saying? Is it to hurt or help? And at the end of the conversation, is there an action step to take? Constructive conversations are empowering and leave people a little better off from having participated in them.
Praise and acknowledge: It’s amazing what a few words of praise and acknowledgment can do. You want to be the kind of person people gravitate to because they know they will be uplifted by you, not put down or drained of life-sustaining energy. In short, you want people to feel good after being in your presence.
Well, that about wraps up Power of Positivity week…or wait, that’s not right. Make sure to keep an eye for the Optimist View this Sunday for a full-length story from yours truly.