Ultimately I think the first step in being a happier person is identifying and eliminating any negative forces surrounding you.

eliminating negativity

We have hit a brand new year and in my book that means a totally clean slate.  If you can’t start a fresh year with a positive outlook and a willingness to be a happier, better person then there really isn’t any hope!  No matter how depressing the month January is, it is THE time to have a positive outlook.

Ultimately I think the first step in being a happier person is identifying and eliminating any negative forces surrounding you.  Negativity can manifest in a number of ways but I think the most toxic is negative people.  If there are people around you who cloud your ability to be the happiest, best person you can be, then it’s time to re-evaluate those relationships.  I let go of two notable friendships and an ex-boyfriend last year which was incredibly hard and a very long winded process.  By sharing my experiences I hope it will potentially help you identify people in your life who don’t have your best interests at heart.

The Gossip

There was a moment last year which hit me like a ton of bricks when I finally realised a friend of mine thrived off putting people down.  She would outrageously gossip about people, often sharing secrets or private information they had entrusted with her.  She just loved saying “can you believe this person did that” or “so and so said that“.

We had originally met at work where there was a group of great girls who all got along really well.  As is so often the way, many ended up leaving, looking to progress their careers elsewhere.  “The Gossip” and another colleague went to work for the same company.  To cut a long story short, “The Gossip” took it upon herself to come back to our company and inform all her ex-collegues this poor girl was about to get fired from her new job because their boss thought she was “incompetent” and “because she ate all the biscuits”.  Not only that, she chose to disclose this very private and not particularly nice news even before she knew of her fate.  I remember saying to her at the time you shouldn’t be telling us this and she just shrugged it off and laughed.  The thing is there is a difference between mindless, silly gossip which we are all guilty of and gossip which is laced with cruelty.  In this instance it felt like she was trying to exercise superiority over this girl by making it very clear she was the better employee out of the two. If you feel someone is vengefully talking about you or divulging your private life for their entertainment, it is absolutely time to step away.

Obviously there was a lot more that happened during my friendship with this girl than just this example but I wanted to highlight this particular story because I feel it’s a good examples of a tell-tell sign of when to start being really wary of someone.

The Ex-Boyfriend

There is a scene in Sex and the City where all the girls are out for brunch and Charlotte declares we only get two great loves in our lives.  It has always stuck in my mind because, in part, I agree with her.  I don’t think we’re necessarily limited to two but I do believe in this concept of “great loves”.  They are few and far between and not every relationship we have is one, sometimes not even our longest relationships is one.  They are the ones that change us and define moments in your life.  The ones that lift you to highs you never knew possible and unfortunately, sometimes plunge you to your darkest depths.

When I look back on this particular ex, I know he was one of these great loves and no one has ever managed to entrance me the same why he did.  This is exactly the reason why I stayed in a perpetual cycle of disfunction and insanity.  The truth is no matter enigmatic or intoxicating someone might be, if you know that person is not good of you, you have to pull away.  It’s incredibly hard, almost impossible but it can be done.  Deep rooted love just isn’t enough to outshine a negative person.  Wake up and smell the toxic wasteland your negative relationship has become and get rid!!

The User

(I’m keeping this one short otherwise this post will go on forever.)

Sadly there are going to be people in life who are friends with you because they either want something from you or because it’s convenient to them.  My friend who behaved like this is actually a really sweet, kind hearted girl but is just so caught up in her own life she doesn’t see that she only speaks to me when she needs me.  Last year I made a conscious decision to stop reaching out to her and sadly we haven’t spoken since.  Sometimes you just need to stop wasting energy on friendships which are one-sided.  Let them go and if it’s a real friend with genuine love for you, they’ll come back.

I would absolutely love to know your thoughts on these types of negative people or even just negative people in general.  What do you think makes someone a negative force and how do you deal with them?  A part of me feels like I’ve been quite harsh eliminating these people from my life but all in all I feel life is too short not to surround yourself with positivity, love and kindness.

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