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10 Sympathy Cards That Don’t Suck

10 Sympathy Cards That Don’t Suck

Let’s face it.

Sympathy cards suck.

They’re sure no fun to give. They’re torturous to buy. And they’re even worse to receive.

If you suffer from a serious illness (or have in the past), you know that the whole scenario can go badly.

When faced with someone else’s illness, normally intelligent and capable humans turn into awkward, foot-in-mouth, ridiculous-card-giving morons.

Not fun.

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Thankfully, one incredibly talented and empathetic artist has done something about it.

Emily McDowell’s cards have been getting a lot of attention these days. That’s because she knows what needs to be said and how to say it. And she has put her words together with her art on these incredibly beautiful, sometimes humorous and always caring post cards.

Card1

    The friend who gives this knows that scouring the Internet will not relieve the pain, stress or fear that illness brings with it. Just plain care and understanding cure more than Google ever will.

    Card2

      Beautiful and honest. Even though good can often be found on the other side of crisis, it doesn’t take away the pain of the struggle. So why talk about it?

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      Card3

        While trite words aren’t helpful, cruises could be exactly what the doctor ordered!

        Card4

          Most people truly want to say something comforting and supportive. Thankfully, the artist wrote it out very artfully on this card.

          Card5

            Beautiful. This card doesn’t even have to be kept for a time of crisis. Who wouldn’t like to hear these words?

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            Card6

              Illness is lonely. This card could help a well meaning friend who has dropped the ball reconnect gracefully.

              Card7

                This card is proof that there are reasons to celebrate everywhere. A chemo session ending is a perfect excuse to rejoice.

                Card8

                  Just a simple message that says your friend is there to do whatever you need them to do. Beautiful!

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                  Card9

                    Emily says, as a cancer patient, she never connected with jokes about being bald or getting a free boob job. Sometimes, there is nothing helpful to be said.

                    Card10

                      Last but not least, calling out what doesn’t help can sometimes be the best thing a friend can do.

                      Emily McDowell has given a great alternative to substandard sympathy greetings for ill or struggling friends.

                      Who do you know who needs visually pleasing words that actually help?

                      Featured photo credit: The Silent Hospital by Ryan McGuire via imcreator.com

                      More by this author

                      Proof you have more positive relationship power than you think 3 Relationship “Truths” That Are Actually Dangerous Lies 4 Vital Ways Your Friends Make You a Better Spouse 10 Sympathy Cards That Don’t Suck

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                      Last Updated on January 18, 2019

                      7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

                      7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

                      Some people will have a rain cloud hanging over them, no matter what the weather is outside. Their negative attitude is toxic to your own moods, and you probably feel like there is little you can do about it.

                      But that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

                      If you want to effectively deal with negative people and be a champion of positivity, then your best route is to take definite action through some of the steps below.

                      1. Limit the time you spend with them.

                      First, let’s get this out of the way. You can be more positive than a cartoon sponge, but even your enthusiasm has a chance of being afflicted by the constant negativity of a friend.

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                      In fact, negativity has been proven to damage your health physically, making you vulnerable to high levels of stress and even cardiac disease. There’s no reason to get hurt because of someone else’s bad mood.

                      Though this may be a little tricky depending on your situation, working to spend slightly less time around negative people will keep your own spirits from slipping as well.

                      2. Speak up for yourself.

                      Don’t just absorb the comments that you are being bombarded with, especially if they are about you. It’s wise to be quick to listen and slow to speak, but being too quiet can give the person the impression that you are accepting what’s being said.

                      3. Don’t pretend that their behavior is “OK.”

                      This is an easy trap to fall into. Point out to the person that their constant negativity isn’t a good thing. We don’t want to do this because it’s far easier to let someone sit in their woes, and we’d rather just stay out of it.

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                      But if you want the best for this person, avoid giving the false impression that their negativity is normal.

                      4. Don’t make their problems your problems.

                      Though I consider empathy a gift, it can be a dangerous thing. When we hear the complaints of a friend or family member, we typically start to take on their burdens with them.

                      This is a bad habit to get into, especially if this is a person who is almost exclusively negative. These types of people are prone to embellishing and altering a story in order to gain sympathy.

                      Why else would they be sharing this with you?

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                      5. Change the subject.

                      When you suspect that a conversation is starting to take a turn for the negative, be a champion of positivity by changing the subject. Of course, you have to do this without ignoring what the other person said.

                      Acknowledge their comment, but move the conversation forward before the euphoric pleasure gained from complaining takes hold of either of you.

                      6. Talk about solutions, not problems.

                      Sometimes, changing the subject isn’t an option if you want to deal with negative people, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still be positive.

                      I know that when someone begins dumping complaints on me, I have a hard time knowing exactly what to say. The key is to measure your responses as solution-based.

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                      You can do this by asking questions like, “Well, how could this be resolved?” or, “How do you think they feel about it?”

                      Use discernment to find an appropriate response that will help your friend manage their perspectives.

                      7. Leave them behind.

                      Sadly, there are times when we have to move on without these friends, especially if you have exhausted your best efforts toward building a positive relationship.

                      If this person is a family member, you can still have a functioning relationship with them, of course, but you may still have to limit the influence they have over your wellbeing.

                      That being said, what are some steps you’ve taken to deal with negative people? Let us know in the comments.

                      You may also want to read: How to Stop the Negative Spin of Thoughts, Emotions and Actions.

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