The holidays are drawing near, signaling time with family, which can often bring more stress than relief. This, along with the end of the year push at work can make it difficult to maintain a positive outlook—but it doesn’t have to be this way. Whether there’s a family member you’re not exactly excited about seeing over a Thanksgiving meal or a co-worker who’s been tearing you down in the office, you don’t have to let the negativity of others affect your mindset. Author and blogger Dani DiPirro explains three steps she uses to stay positive and cope with outside negativity, according to MindBodyGreen.
Focus on Yourself
“You can’t control how others act, but you can always control what you focus on, how you act, and how you react,” writes DiPirro. She suggests you look inward and ask yourself how you can react positively when dealing with the negativity of others. The goal shouldn’t be to fix someone else’s attitude but to understand your own.
Don’t Take It Personally
A good amount of the time, another person’s negative attitude does not have to do with you directly. Everyone experiences bad days and untold hardships. “It’s hard to know exactly what’s going on in someone else’s head, so it can be really useful not to take every negative word or action personally,” she advises.
This might be challenging, but there are great benefits from choosing to acknowledge the positive aspects of even the most negative situations and people. “Every negative interaction is a chance to practice positive thinking,” DiPirro writes. You can try this by thinking of positive experiences you’ve had with a person who is giving you a hard time or by being grateful for the opportunity to work on your own positivity.