Coping with Negative People in Business
I’ve had at least FOUR conversations in one week with people telling me about how upset they’ve been in their business world trying to cope with some difficult negativity:
- “Nay-Sayers” who put down your dreams and vision and undermine your self-confidence (largely due to their own fears and lack of self-belief)
- “Victim-Players” who portray you as the “bad guy” for something you’ve said or done, even if they themselves were at fault and despite your honest intentions and having everyones best interest at heart
-”Trolls” anonymous people who love to create negative drama at other people’s expense via social media (it’s just a challenge or a ‘game’ to them)
-”Aggressive Egos” who have a hobby of giving aggressive feedback towards anyone who threatens their belief system or highlights their own securities.
The sad truth is, everyone in business is likely to experience one of these at some point.
The more you are out there doing good in the world, the more likely you are to come across the above. If you do…remember…YOU know who you are and why you are doing what you do, stay true to yourself, give gratitude for those in your life who really know you, love you and understand what you are doing in the world…don’t let your energy be drained and don’t be pulled down by negative people around you!
Here are what others have added to the discussion about dealing these types of negativity:
“It’s a sad fact of life that not everyone is pleasant and positive and while it might sometimes be hard to turn the other cheek, it’s important that we learn to do this and give back the negative energy forced upon us by others. I’m the first to admit that it’s harder said than done sometimes and that’s why groups like this are invaluable at providing positive energy and support”
“I gave a talk at a networking group of Friday, it was about overcoming difficulties (we all have them)
For me it was about accepting myself and not trying to compare, criticise, or worry. Instead realising whilst I wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea I was a lot of people’s and that its ok to embrace all my energy, craziness and enthusiasm and use it! So many ladies resonated with that honesty Friday, that it also made me realise how far I’ve come in overcoming those worries, niggles and nay Sayers.”
“It’s certainly very common. In my experience, I tend to go back into areas of personal confidence – remember what you’re good at, what skills you have, what value you bring, what your values are, what a great mum/friend/partner etc. When feeling buoyed, check the validity of the nay-sayer; could you have approached the ‘victim’ in a different way, etc – sometimes there is a business point/managerial issue etc in there that may be worth looking at – the rest simply doesn’t help you or your business. Then maybe have a look at why it’s so important what other people think – what is the fear? So, I guess, it’s less about dealing with the negativity, and more about checking in with our confidence.”
“For me, it is less about responding to negativity and more about how I choose to be affected by it. Typically, I allow myself to feel upset if that is coming up for me (not bypassing emotions) but then remind myself that this person’s opinion is just an opinion and I do not have to take it into account and, like Kaye, check in with my confidence. When dealing with a ‘victim’ I go back to my intention and check where I was coming from. If the intention was honest, positive and in everyone’s highest interest then I give this person space to deal with their emotions by removing myself from the situation without taking responsibility for their emotions.”
“The key for me is building a great network around you of go-getting people with positive energy. Because they’re who buoy you up when something difficult happens and this is what supports your confidence. I’m part of a business mentoring group where we all gee one another along, but give each other constructive feedback too. I’ve had a few encounters with negative people from the first couple of categories in the past month, but this hasn’t bothered me in the way it would have done previously. I put this down to having a great network around me, which helps to keep my confidence high as I get so much encouragement. And I think your advice to your community is spot on!”
Remember: “What Sally says about Susie says more about Sally than Susie”!
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