Dealing with Negativity

Hello all.  I bet you’re wondering where this post is headed by that title.  I struggled with the thought of just letting this go, but I thought maybe my experience might help someone else.

I had an experience with negativity and flat-out meanness this weekend.  When we put ourselves out there, someone will want to tear us down if there is any measure of talent or success or even just perceived happiness. I will not go into details but let’s just say I am learning to take the bad with the good. I put my work out there and someone chose to go beyond critique and make it a personal attack to a degree.

It has become abundantly clear that in this information age, anonymity breeds meanness. There’s no fear of recrimination. Funny, that I just read about this on another Challenger’s blog. Check it out here.

After venting to a few good friends and family, I’ve decided to take the positive spin from this all. Beneath the venom were a few constructive comments. I’m taking those comments and peeling away the hurtful words and personal attack and focusing only on those directed at my writing. This is the path I’m choosing because if I can’t learn this now, I’ll never be able to take the comments from readers, editors or reviewers.

We all have to deal with mean people from time to time. Whether it be co-workers, friends, random strangers or family. There is usually an underlying cause that has nothing to do with us. It may be difficult, if not impossible, not to react; yet not reacting may be the best defense.  One acquaintance comes to mind.  When this person’s life is good, they are nice as could be and fun to be around. But at the first sign of stress, they immediately take everything people say the wrong way and people are forced to walk on eggshells simply to keep a semi-peaceful environment. Which is no way for anyone to live. I don’t want to live that way. So when this person is in that mood, I choose to stay away.

While I was looking for silly pictures to put in this post (to lighten the mood at least a tad), I found this website. Dealing with Mean and Jealous People

It’s a good reminder not to let those spewing negativity effect our course in life. Turn the other cheek if possible. If not, take a deep breath and think about our responses before popping off and making the situation worse. Not only may it diffuse a situation, but I can still look myself in the mirror without the regret of I shouldn’t have said that.

Remember the lyrics to the song. “Accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative”.

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