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How To Deal With Negative People

Is other people's negativity bring you down and affecting your mindset? Here are five tips for how to deal with negative people.

Does other people’s negative energy bring you down? Maybe it’s your coworkers, family members, or even friends you’ve grown apart from.

When you’re surrounded by negativity, it’s easy to absorb that energy and start to feel negative yourself. This can mess with your mindset and make you feel drained.

Is other people's negativity bring you down and affecting your mindset? Here are five tips for how to deal with negative people.

That’s why it’s so important to be around people who you easily connect with and who uplift your spirits. We all know that’s not always possible though, especially since we don’t get to choose our family members or coworkers.

That being said, there are ways we can bring positivity to situations and not let the negativity cloud our minds. In this post, I’m sharing five tips for how to deal with negative people so they don’t get into your head.

How Negativity Affects You

We’ve all dealt with negative, frustrated, and overbearing people in our lives. I remember working with someone who was in a state of panic. They were trying to figure something out at the last minute and were clearly frustrated that things weren’t going to plan. In turn, I was getting frustrated because they were being impatient and sassy towards me.

A quote that an old coworker used to say came to mind:

“Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on mine.”

Haven’t we all been in situations where someone else’s poor planning ends up with them taking their frustration out on us? I’m sure you’ve done the same to other people too. The thing is that it makes everyone’s life miserable.

When someone asks me to do something from a place of panic and frustration, it makes ME feel panicked and frustrated. If that same person took the time to gather their composure before asking me to do something, I’d be able to help out from a place of composure too.

Sometimes dealing with someone else’s negativity is more than a one-time instance. Everyone gets frustrated from time to time, but there are also those people who constantly seem to bring our energy down. Sometimes it’s an entire environment full of people who don’t share the same goals as you.

Whatever it is, you can feel yourself being affected when you’re around them. Most of us tend to absorb the mood of whoever’s around us, so how do we avoid letting negative people drain our energy when we can’t escape them? Here are a few tips to help:

How To Deal With Negative People

1. Detach

Remember that the way people act has nothing to do with you. Detach yourself from their frustrations and don’t internalize them as your fault. They have their own things to work through, and that’s on their shoulders to deal with.

2. Avoid Blame

Don’t blame, assume, or attack them. Telling people they should “stop being so negative” usually doesn’t go well. Show this person the compassion and empathy you want them to show you. Just don’t let them walk all over you (see point #4).

3. Respond Calmly

Respond the way you would want them to talk to you. Avoid getting passive aggressive because that doesn’t help anybody. If they’re gossiping or putting others down, either change the conversation or walk away.

4. Be Firm

Be firm with your boundaries. When someone does something that crosses a line, make it known. You have to stick up for your beliefs, your time, and your energy because otherwise people will take advantage of these things.

5. Find The Positive

Identify what gives you positive energy. This could be certain people, TV shows, books, exercise, self-care, etc. Seek these things out often, especially when you feel like others are draining your energy. And if someone else’s negative energy is compromising your happiness, walk away (even if that means forever).

How do you deal with negative people?

I hope this post has given you some tips to handle negative energy when it comes your way. If you can find ways to stay calm and protect your own energy, you can avoid letting negativity affect you.

Here are some more posts from the blog to help you deal with negative vibes:

About the Author
Picture of Catherine Beard
Hi, I'm Catherine! As the creator of The Blissful Mind, I love exploring ways to make life more fulfilling, especially when it comes to our daily routines, habits, and well-being.

19 Responses

  1. Thank you Catherine for some helpful ideas. I’ve found that oftentimes a persons negativity is really someone looking for a thoughtful sound board. Those of us who empathize with others can become bogged down in someone’s negativity. I try to remember that negativity is usually related to a deeper issue.

  2. I think that it’s so important to cut any negative people out of your life if they are starting to affect you. On Instagram especially I love the use of the “mute” button because then it can stop you seeing people’s posts and they wont be notified!
    Chloe X

  3. Sticking up to your believes can be said in sense if you’re right. Never become egoistic, You should be open minded enough to say that yeah I was wrong if you were wrong. Being honest with oneself.

  4. Being a hairstylist, I have had to live by the quote of “your lack of planning does not constitute an emergency for me!” People sometimes act as though they have forgotten which month Christmas or back to school fall in and get upset when my schedule is already full. Knowing the proper response and remembering to acknowledge their reality allows me to be both compassionate about what they might be going through, but also be firm and practice self care by not overloading myself because of it.

  5. I was really excited about discovering your blog until I came across this post. My name happens to be Nancy and I’ve heard this name association my whole life. People say I’m negative-maybe just living up to others expectations? As a perfectionist, I tend to look at all outcomes for situations. I’ve also had some major disappointments, so I keep my expectations fairly low. So my question is, if everyone is told to cut negative people out of their life, where does that leave me?

    1. Aw Nancy, I’m sorry your name has turned into such a common phrase like that. I’ll think twice about it using it in the future. In answer to your question, everyone’s opinion of what is negative is different. It’s all subjective. There will be people out there who appreciate your realistic approach to all situations, and there will be those who can’t handle it. You just have to find the ones who get you because they won’t cut you out.

      1. I think that everyone will have to face negativity so try to be positive in your life if you are positive no one can hurt you by words

    2. The truth is that none of us is perfect, but many of us can’t admit it. It is really difficult to live in a society that is full of selfish individuals who think that only their lives matter. There is a lack of empathy and understanding, and this explains also the tendency to blame others for their negative thinking. People ought to remember that no one wants to be unhappy purposefully, and people’s negativity is often a cry for help. Before setting our boundaries, we should be sure that our ignorance will not destroy the chance of helping another human being. I think one of the biggest mistakes is that we don’t try to communicate openly and honestly about the problem. Maybe we will not be able to trigger empathy, but at least we can create more understanding.

  6. I think number 2 is the one I should be careful of at my work. I know couple people who are very negative. One guy I know has a bullying attitude, low intelligence and also exaggerates or lies. Remember the negative character Melvin that Jack Nicolson portrayed in As Good As It Gets? And also Biff from Back to the future? That’s what they remind me of.

    The negative people I know also have that annoying knows everything attitude and if I talk about something exciting going on in my life or current events, that one guy would make fun of me and sometimes leading to shouting matches. So I just stopped say anything about something going on in my life and in their life. What’s weird is that they admit they have problems and yet they still continue to bully and be negative.

  7. I completely agree with you Catherine. There are some people around me who are negative, frustrated with themselves. I get angry when I se them but I used to calm down and make sure that they are not effected. I want to ask you one thing that if they cross their boundaries, then what should I do??

  8. how can i find positive energy in this difficult world? i think if i can go out and help others i would feel better about myself and creative positive energy but with the virus i feel trapped. the negative energy is in my home. my husband and children. you feel it the minute you walk in the door. i often this if i could just elude positive energy they will feel it and want to be more like me

    1. I’m not sure if it’s possible for you Laurie, but helping people through an online platform (like this blog) has been incredibly rewarding for me. Finding like-minded people on social media and through blogs has reminded me that there are good people in this world.

  9. Really, we are surrounded by a lot of negative people who give us negative energy, we need to avoid them and get them out of our lives immediately…. Thank you Catherine I enjoyed reading the article.

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