Wednesday, December 11, 2019

How to Stay Positive Around a Negative Co-worker - The Muse

How to Stay Positive Around a Negative Co-worker - The MuseHow to Stay Positive Around a Negative Co-worker We all have colleagues we cant stand- the one who chews louder than humanly possible (or so you thought, until you met him), the one who tries to steal the spotlight all the time, the one who makes excuse after excuse and is really just a lazy bum, and fill in annoying characteristic of a fellow employee here. But perhaps the most dangerous of all? The part who complains about everything.Even if you do love your job (which is great), there are going to be times when you question it or become frustrated- thats just the name of the game. You certainly dont need anyone else making it worse. Emotions are contagious, so being around someone whos always complaining or naysaying everything can rub off on you. And thats not good news.Unfortunately, you cant change people, so its up to you to control your own outlook, especially when you have to spend time around those who are allergic to happiness. So, without further ado, here are three ways to deal with a co-worker who hates everything so that you can maintain a positive attitude (at least most of the time)1. Practice CompassionIt can be tempting to label someone as a lost cause and tell her to talk to hand cause the face dont give a damn. But this shouldnt necessarily be your first plan of action. A mora practical approach to dealing with her is to start by understanding the reasons for her negativity, says Raj Raghunathan, PhD, Professor of Marketing at the McCombs School of Business. In brief, almost all negativity has its roots in one of three deep-seated fears the fear of being disrespected by others, the fear of not being loved by others, and the fear that bad things are going to happen. These fears feed off each other to fuel the belief that the world is a dangerous place and people are generally mean. Your team member could be acting the way she is for a myriad of reasons. Perhaps shes been struggling w ith the interactions between her and her boss. Or, maybe she feels like shes drowning in work and putting in way too many hours. It could also be something totally unrelated to the office. You never really know, but Raghunathan believes that her negativity is a thinly disguised cry for help. Its not your responsibility to fix her problems, but having compassion can go a long way. As the negative rolle absorbs positivity from your presence, she will like himself better, and this hopefully will lead to a virtuous cycle of greater trust in others and optimism about the future. How does this help you, you ask? Well, it can help you eliminate that gloomy presence in your life (hopefully). 2. Block Him or Her OutSometimes lending an ear just isnt going to help- either because the person is so caught up in what is bothering him or because, well, its just the way he is. Sadly, some people are so entrenched in seeing the negative side of things that they leave zero room for positive things t o grow, says Marc Chernoff, co-founder of Marc and Angel Hack Life and co-author of 1,000+ Little Things Happy Successful People Do Differently. Their negative attitudes and opinions are venomous and contagious. And Angel believes you should do your best to leave these types of people behind in order to subtract the bad and add the good. Now, unfortunately, if you work with someone like this, you cant just pretend he doesnt exist. If youre lucky, you may not have to interact with him too much in order for you both to successfully complete your assignments. But if youre not so lucky, theres still a way to utilize this advice by ignoring him when what hes saying or doing isnt necessary. Heres how bedrngnis only should you filter what you say to others, but what is said to you, too. Create a metaphorical positivity sieve for your mind, and only let good stuff in. To do this, youll need to learn how to identify destructive comments or behavior (e.g., incessant eye rolling). For example, if he says something like, Wow, Laura always wears the ugliest pants, you can probably disregard it. Do Lauras pants have any impact on you, your work, or your team? Ill give you a hint No. It was a piece of useless, catty gossip thats better going in one ear and out the other. To spend any time thinking about it would be a waste of your time and brain space. If, however, something he says does impact you, your work, or your team (or all three), then its probably worth paying attention to. 3. Dont Dwell on His or Her AttitudeLike I said above, mental states can be infectious. If you arent careful, pessimistic thoughts can sneak into your brain and take up a residence there. Either youll unknowingly adopt the same views, or youll find yourself stewing about this person, whining about her to everyone you see, as well as thinking about her whenever your mind is unoccupied. And this isnt how you want to live your life, right? As Amy Morin, author of 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don t Do Take Back Your Power, Embrace Change, Face Your Fears, and Train Your Brain for Happiness and Success, says, Dont allow negative people to steal your time and energy. Rather than complain about people you dont enjoy, choose to strike up conversations about pleasurable topics. Similarly, instead of spending your commute thinking about how much you dislike that person you have to work with, turn on the radio and listen to music that reduces stress. Take back your power by limiting the amount of time you spend talking about, thinking about, and worrying about unpleasant people. Make a list of the things you like about your job and frequently revisit it. (If you dont have much on this list- or anything at all- then maybe its time to reevaluate). Also, surround yourself with teammates who will inspire you to be a better person, provide you with motivation to achieve your goals, empower you to make the changes you need to success, and cheer on your success, says Leon Logothetis, auth or of Amazing Adventures of a Nobody A Life Changing Journey Across America Relying on the Kindness of Strangers.Moral of the story Youre probably going to encounter a miserable person everywhere you go. You cant avoid it. But you can prevent it from affecting you. Believe it or not, work can be a happy place. Dont let one person ruin it for you.

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