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11 Ways To Stay Positive (Even When You’re Around Negative People)

by Audra Dittlinger
11 ways to stay positive

We’ve all been there: you get stuck with a Debbie Downer at work, or you get pinned in line behind someone at the grocery store that has absolutely nothing nice to say about the cashier.

Whether it’s at work, in public, or with “that one friend” who you can’t seem to please, there will always be negativity in this world.

Our job is to not take it personally, try to overcome it as gracefully as possible, and know that we’re armed and ready to move on with our own positivity to drown out any pessimism that may drag us down.

You can stay positive with these tips to help combat the negativity…because no matter what unconstructive criticism may be thrown at you, you’re above it, and you are amazing.


How You Can Combat Negativity In Your Life

1. Try not to take it personally.

If you are dealing with someone who has a “toxic” personality, just remember this: it’s really none of your business what any other person thinks of you, and it doesn’t affect you. If they think negatively of you, who cares? Just be you, and be the bigger person.

Related: 4 Reasons Why You Should Stop Trying To Change People

2. Keep your cool.

By not lowering yourself to the standards of negative Nellys, you will find it is much easier to stay calm, stay positive, and just accept the state of things as they are, until you can get out.

3. Remove yourself from the situation.

It may seem like an easy out, but it is sometimes the best choice. If you’re stuck and can’t get out, sometimes just backing out of a negative conversation and daydreaming for a minute is enough to keep the negativity from sticking to your aura, until you can get out of dodge.

4. Breathe.

Any good therapist will recommend breathing therapy to ease anxiety, and it works. The next step is a great way to follow it up…

Related: You’re Probably Not Breathing Right. Here’s How To Fix It

5. Count to 10. If that doesn’t work, count to 20.

Works like a charm. That’s because it gives you a few seconds to let go of your instinctive reaction so that you don’t let the negativity affect you.

6. Exercise.

Even if you are only exercising for 15 minutes a few times a week, you’ll feel better, and your head will be clearer.

I’m not saying you should immediately leave a negative situation and run out and exercise (although that’s not a horrible idea), but frequent exercise will get your mind in a more healthy place to combat all the negative influences around you.

Related: The 7 Best Bodyweight Exercises You Can Do Without Going To The Gym

7. Speak up.

If you are ready and willing, fight the negativity with your (positive) words. Just be ready to defend your position, and keep a steady head, or else you will end up lowering your standards without realizing it.

8. Keep yourself occupied.

If your mind is focused on something else, it is easier to ignore the pessimism surrounding you.

9. Surround yourself with things that help you stay positive.

If you feel your work environment is constantly destructive to your mood, try to surround yourself with things that make you content and keep you uplifted.

It doesn’t matter if it’s sticky notes with optimistic quotes, photos of family, or listening to music that brings you back to a positive place—try to frame your workspace with all things that remind you that you are above the negativity, and overall, awesome (because, duh…you are).

10. Don’t hold grudges.

It’s just not good for you. It will bring you down to a self-destructive place, and it can be very hard to transport yourself away from there, the longer time goes on.

Related: The Power Of Forgiveness

Remember, forgiveness isn’t about the other person. It is about you, moving forward and letting go.

11. Make your home your oasis.

Since negativity can be overwhelming in today’s world, the most stable place to boost positivity is in your home.

You owe it to yourself to turn your home into a peaceful mecca, where you are able to come home and leave the negativity at the door.

Check out to learn how the colors of paint on your walls can transform your home into a peaceful sanctuary.

Related: 5 Ways To Use Color Psychology To Improve Your Life

The Takeaway

It is so easy in today’s society to get drawn into the darker, more depressing circumstances of life. The best way to combat this and stay positive is to follow these tips. Don’t let the negativity get to you, and to try to overcome it in the most positive ways possible.

Keep your home and work place simple, encouraging, and proactive. When in doubt, turn to Inspiyr. Together, we got this.


AudraAudra Dittlinger is a contributor for, as well as a full-time working mom living in rural Indiana. She is an insurance professional with a Bachelor of Arts in English. She writes to create, inspire, and empower.

Photo by Jon Siegel

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