If you are anything but an introverted hermit you are no doubt dealing with negativity. Unfortunately, it is all around us. In our jobs, in our homes, in our schools, on TV and let’s not forget social media. Everywhere. How in the world can we live with a positive attitude in such a negative world?
Let’s see what the Word says about this.
8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
Whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things. What a great Word. So while at work when that co worker is speaking negatively about this and that; being able to change our own thinking can help us avoid being negative ourselves. Speaking positively to that person. Reminding them the good in the situation or in the day can help keep our thoughts positive. It is so easy to jump on the negative bandwagon especially when we are in that same situation.
What if you live with someone who seems to be negative all … the … time? Our homes are supposed to be a place of peace. A safe place to be, but when someone is so negative in your home it’s very hard to stay positive. You love that person and want the best for them. Reminding ourselves what is lovely about them. What qualities they have that are admirable.
These are ways to help keep our own thoughts and attitudes positive. It’s not easy I know. I struggle when negativity strikes in our home. I want that person to be happy. I want to see a smile again. I want to help them find happy again. I want that person to trust me and believe and agree with me when I encourage them. Sometimes that doesn’t work. Then all of a sudden I am on the negativity bandwagon. UGH!! All I can do at that point is pray, pray, pray for me and them.
Sometimes negativity can start an argument. Especially when you are trying to be positive and that person being negative doesn’t want to hear it. Try as we might, we get no where with them but in a fight. The Word says;
14 Starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam;
so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out.
So if you know the topic is going to start a quarrel or if that person is in a “mood” dropping the matter and praying for them is the best thing to do I’m sure. The other thing that can happen is not only will our mood turn negative, we may also become angry and bitter toward them. Not good! Just drop it and walk away.
I always told my children when they were younger to not fight, just walk away. Go to their rooms and leave each other alone. So at work, go back to your desk, cubical or office and pray instead. At home, go to your room, send the child to their room. Go for a drive and listen to worship music to change your own attitude. You will come back refreshed in the Spirit and ready to be encouraging all over again!
When dealing with my mom who is extremely negative, I can get pretty irritated and even angry. Luckily, she doesn’t live in my home, just 3 minutes away. So I leave. I kiss her forehead, tell her I love her and that I will see her tomorrow. I leave her and her negativity behind for the night. Coming back the next day ready to love her more.
Another way to deal with negativity in ourselves or others is to give thanks. Be thankful, grateful, and humbly praising the Lord for all He has provided. From what He has protected us from.
20 always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
I know for myself, this tactic really works. Praying prayers of thankfulness and singing songs of praise to the Lord always help to change my spirit and my attitude. Back in the day when I was driving to a job I didn’t like, I was on the verge of a life change. (getting married and moving away) I just wanted it to happen and move on with life. However, the time hadn’t come yet and my attitude about things was just a bit sucky. So on my 30 minute drive to work I would sing the chorus, “this is the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it”. Just that act of worship would completely change my attitude and I would have Joy. So totally worth it.
Leave Them Behind
Unfortunately, there are times in our lives we just have to walk away. Not to the other room, but completely away. When the negative people in our lives just cannot see the good. Or when the constantly pound us with their negative thoughts and actions which insult or even deeply wound us, we’ve got to let them go. I know a few people who had family members so negative they finally had to avoid them all together. In both cases, some of the family members are back in their lives but not all of them.
5 If people do not welcome you, leave their town and shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.”
1 Corinthians 15:33
33 Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.”
Sometimes that bad company just needs to be removed!
Do Not Loose Hope
Lastly, I think we need to remember, the Lord will reward us for doing good. Even if that “good” seems useless at the time.
9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
What about you? How do you combat negativity in your life? What scripture do you use to help yourself or others in your life to stay positive?
My hope and prayer is these Words from the Lord will give you guidance, strength and encourage you as well. In Jesus’ name.