What To Do When You Are Stuck In A Negative Environment?
As business owners we feel a lot of pressure, actually most of the time. While we definitely know that it is important to take a position of full responsibility (otherwise we are simply victims and don’t have the power to change) there are certain circumstances where things truly seem to be out of our control.
We might find ourselves in an negative environment that is not conducive to our lifestyle and goals. Yes, in a perfect world, we would be able to fully isolate ourselves from negative environments. But in reality that is not going to happen. We have to deal with it. Today I want to share some steps we can take to minimize our exposure to negativity and limit its impact.
Acknowledge The Truth
When we believe that we are being forced to tolerate a negative environment, such as an employee who constantly complains or dealing with customers who don’t appreciate the work we are doing, we can feel stuck and hopeless. The impression of being subjected to negativity against our will can increase stress and destroy our attitude.
To reclaim a sense of control, it’s important to understand that we do have a choice in every circumstance. You may feel that you can’t afford to let go of your customers because they bring certain revenue to your business, which gives you a sense of security and “safe” income. Instead of bemoaning the fact that you’re stuck with your “bad” customer, acknowledge that you do have the choice of letting them go. But what you are doing instead is, you are choosing to keep your keep them on board, because you like the revenue they bring to your company and sense of stability that gives you. By simply putting your situation into this new perspective you can gain a sense of control and ease the level of stress you are feeling around this circumstance.
Whenever we feel a certain level of stress arise in us it’s important that we take a step back, acknowledge the truth of the situation and understand that we are not a victim and can move forward with our choice.
3 Ways To Be Proactive
Feel. I have found it very beneficial to actually let ourselves feel the stress we are under. So often we try to escape it by doing some form of affirmations, quick breathing technique or by plainly suppressing it. I compare these types of activities to trying to push down a lid on a pot of boiling water (you know what happens…) When we give ourselves permission to fully feel how we feel about certain circumstances (that doesn’t mean we can let it out on others!) then we can actually find what is underneath that feeling. And usually there is a place of clarity that we couldn’t access before, when we were all caught up in feeling angry, for example.
Limit the amount of information that you consume every day. Become more aware of what type of information you let in your mind and your subconscious. For myself, I have realized that being consumed in tabloid news is absolutely not productive. Not only does it take away time, but it also occupies my thoughts, and then has be not be focused on what is truly important in my life.
Exercise. Next to my meditation practice, exercise is hands down the best way for me to stay positive and focused on what is important. Whenever I go even just a couple days without exercising I get agitated, easily frustrated and my thinking becomes less clear and productive.
Always Do Something
Now, it’s also true that sometimes you are in situations where you can’t make a big impact. But even in those circumstances you can make a choice about what you are going to do. Maybe you can’t make a big impact, but there may be little ways that you can contribute to making it a better situation. You can always show care and respect to the people you are interacting with. You can always go out of your way and support the people around you. Sometimes all that is needed is to create a little “crack” for something new to happen.
Finally, we all want to make a positive impact for the people around us. We do that by being an example, by being as positive as we can be and by giving wholeheartedly to whatever we are working on.