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Last Updated on May 28, 2019

10 Reasons Why You Should Avoid Negative People

10 Reasons Why You Should Avoid Negative People

Do you want to be successful?

Do you want achieve great things in life and make all of your dreams come true?

Then one thing I think you have to be very careful about is deciding who you associate with in your life personally and professionally. What I have found is the most successful people that I’ve met have made it a rule to avoid negative people.

Here are 10 reasons why you should avoid negative people in your life.

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1. Negative people can affect your attitude

I’m now the author of 18 books, but when I first started writing I told anyone who would listen that the first goal was to write five books in three years. Friends and family were very encouraging, and told me that it was a great goal. Acquaintances however were quite a different story. Some of them said that I was being unrealistic, that I was setting the bar too high, and that writing five books in three years was nearly impossible. If I had chosen to listen to those negative people, or chosen to believe what they had to say, it would have affected my attitude about writing and my goals.

Negative people will discourage you and they will try to drag you down with them to the dark side. As Robert Tew once said, “Don’t let negative and toxic people rent space in your head. Raise the rent and kick them out.”

2. Negative feedback from negative people affects your thinking

I’ve often said that negative people are ESV’s which stands for energy sucking vampires! The problem with negative people is if you hang around with them enough, and listen to them long enough, they start impacting your thinking, and you soon realize that instead of thinking positively you are thinking negatively. They are very stealth at this. Before you know it, you will find it can definitely impact the way that you think and change your belief system when it shouldn’t.

3. They are an energy drain

I have noticed that when I’m around positive people who are enthusiastic they raise other people’s energy levels. Negative people do the opposite; they tend to be an energy drain. I’ve seen some people walk into a room and the energy level goes up, and other people walk into a room and the energy level goes down. They suck the energy out.

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4. It damages your credibility

If you surround yourself with negative nasty naysayers, then you may not realize it but other people in your life will judge you by people that you associate with. If you hang around negative, small minded people it makes you look negative and small minded yourself. At one point in my life I had a business partner, who I worked on several projects with. For many reasons, I stopped doing work with him. After he stopped being my partner, several people said that they were surprised that I was ever doing business with them. Little did I know that my association with him was damaging my credibility.

5. Negative people won’t provide encouragement

Negative people are not only negative, they’re also great at discouraging you, and giving you negative feedback. They are so good at it they can make the negative sound like it makes sense. In life there’s going to be times when you are struggling or are facing adversity. What you need during those times is someone who will encourage you support you and convince you that it can be done, not someone who does the opposite. You need someone to lift you up not knock you down.

6. They are hard to get rid of

I meet many people as a professional speaker, and when we talk about negative people, they tell me that they do have a friend of theirs who is very negative that they have been friends with for years. When asked, they say they have been friends since high school, and that they would feel bad getting rid of them. I strongly encourage them to end the relationships with negative people because of the huge negative impact it’s having on their life. Yet they cling to that negative person because of a feeling of loyalty. As Hans F. Hanson once said “people inspire you or they drain you, pick them wisely.”

7. Life is too short

I don’t know about you, but life, I believe, is short, and I really do not want to spend my time being around negative, crabby, grumpy or grouchy people. They tend to make life miserable and I want to live a life of happiness. I want to live a quality life by being with quality people. So one of the ways of doing that is to limit my contact with negative people and to increase my contact with positive people, to bring me joy and happiness.

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8. Negative reinforcement versus positive reinforcement

Negative people will simply reinforce anything negative that you say, and give you all the reasons why you’re right in your negativity and toxic thinking. Positive people will tell you can do it, and will give you positive reinforcement which is what you need when you have doubts. Negative people will make you believe your doubts, while positive people will convince you that you’re wrong and that you can do it after all. As Joel Osteen once said “you cannot hang out with negative people and expect to live a positive life.”

9. They love drama

In the past in my life, I have had negative people who were friends. Often they would have many dramatic things going on in their life, and I would try to coach them, help them, and support them. I would give them advice which they said was great advice, and that they would definitely make changes. But guess what? About a month later out I would have breakfast with them, and discovered that they still had the same drama, and I came to realization that they relished and enjoyed it.

The negative people of the world thrive on drama and believe me- it’s not something you need in your life. On top of that, they want to involve you as a character in the drama .As Tony Gaskins once said “negative people need drama like oxygen, stay positive, it will take their breath away.”

10. You won’t grow

If you’re friends with negative people, they will revel in stagnation and negative thinking and they really do not want to grow. Because they don’t want to grow, they want to discourage you from growing as well. The only way to move forward in your life is to associate with people who are also moving forward and will help you move forward with yours. The positive person has their foot on the gas pedal, and the negative person has a foot on the brake.

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So in the end it is up to you to decide what kind of people you’re going to be friends with, and the kinds of people you’re going to spend your time with. I strongly recommend that if you have negative friends you should end the relationship. If you have negative family members, we should spend as little time with them as possible. I guarantee you that if you eliminate negative people from your life you will be more successful, far more productive and truly happy. As W. Clement Stone once said “there is little difference in people but that little difference makes a big difference. The little difference is attitude the big difference is whether it is positive or negative.”

Featured photo credit: Isaiah Rustad via unsplash.com

More by this author

Shawn Doyle

Shawn is a certified professional speaker, author and an Executive and Life Coach.

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Last Updated on July 12, 2019

How to Get Your Kids to Stop Whining All the Time

How to Get Your Kids to Stop Whining All the Time

Whining children are not enjoyable to be around. The sound of incessant whining can be like fingernails on a chalkboard. Nobody wants to listen to whining. There are solutions to help stop the whining. Below are my top 8 tips to get the whining to stop.

1. Address the Issue

To get a child to stop habitually whining, you first need to address the issue with the child.

There are some children who aren’t even aware that they are whining. In their little minds, they are simply voicing their opinions, concerns, and complaints. They don’t realize that tone and delivery matter significantly in communication. You need to talk to them about what whining is and how it affects you.

When you address the issue with the child, ensure that they understand for their age. A two-year-old and a seven-year-old have very different levels of comprehension. Speak to each child on their level. Use words that they will understand.

For example, in talking to your two-year-old, you can sit down on the floor so that you are at their eye level. Explain that whining is not a good behavior and that you are going to enforce consequences. “You are such a good girl, but when you whine that is not good girl behavior. From now on, you will get time out when you whine. If you want to tell me something use your big girl voice without whining and I will listen.”

When you communicate clearly and on their level, they can better understand that their whining needs to stop. Getting them to understand that their whining is a real problem is the first step.

2. Zero Tolerance for Whining

You need to set a standard in your home with whining. It is not allowed in our home. Does that mean it never happens? No, of course it still happens, my children are human and are not perfect. They whine, but when whining occurs, there are consequences.

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They know that if they whine, they will either get a timeout immediately, or they lose check marks from their chart. We use reward charts in our home. Our children earn check marks for positive behaviors and completing chores. When they complete a 50 box check mark chart, they get to cash it in for a toy or something else that they have been wanting. They can get check marks taken away for misbehavior. Whining, especially in public, can result in check marks being taken away.

It is hard to give a child a timeout when you are at the grocery store or out running errands. Taking away check marks is saved for those situations when a timeout is not feasible. My kids take their check marks seriously, because they are hard-earned. With a threat to take away a check mark, usually their behavior changes immediately.

Yes, bribery can be good parenting sometimes.[1]

Whatever methods of reward and consequence that you may have in your home, it must also apply to whining. You can provide a reward for an entire day without whining. Having consequences that occur when whining happens is what will help change the behavior as well. If you only have empty threats by warning them eight times that “if you don’t stop whining, you are going to timeout” is not effective.

The key to getting the behavior to change is having consequences. You ask them only once to stop and provide a consequence in your request. For example, if my son Charlie is whining, I will say something along these lines: “If you don’t stop whining right now, then you are going to get a 5 minute timeout. If you have something to say, please use your big boy voice and say it to me nicely.” They know that I won’t ask a second time. If they whine again, they immediately go to timeout.

3. Enforce Consequences for Whining Using a One Ask Approach

My kids don’t fight with me about going to timeout. They know if they argue or continue whining, then there are consequences for that behavior. That consequence is increased time in their timeout. I usually start with a three-minute or five-minute timeout. If they complain or continue to whine, my response is “one more whine or complaint and it goes to ten-minutes”. It isn’t just an idle threat either. They know I will follow through.

If the complaints continue, time will continue to be added to their time-out. If we make it all the way to a thirty minute timeout, I will send them to their room and they can lay down for a nap for that thirty minutes. It doesn’t often get to that point, but they know that it is possible, because they have all had those thirty-minute timeouts that mean they go to lay down in their room.

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Your ability to get their behavior to stop immediately is tied directly to your enforcement of the ask. If you ask them to do something, you must have a consequence tied to that request. When they don’t do as asked, then you immediately follow through with the consequence. This is enforcing a “one-ask approach.” When you keep asking them repeatedly to stop whining and you don’t have it tied to a consequence, they will keep whining. They don’t have an incentive to change.

You must ask once for them to stop the whining and have it tied to a consequence if they don’t stop. You must enforce the consequence immediately if they continue to whine after that first warning. This is using the one-ask approach.[2]

4. Provide Them with Communication Tools

Some children whine because they don’t have the right tools to communicate. This is especially true for young children who have not developed good communication skills.

A child who is under the age of two may be whining “mommy” all the time when they want milk, or help putting on their shoes, or they want a toy off a high shelf. Teach them the words and how to ask for those things. For example, using a nice tone say to them “you can ask for milk by saying “mommy, milk please”. Have them copy your tone. If they don’t use the same tone, then repeat the tone and phrase more exaggerated in a sweet voice so they better understand.

Providing children with the right tools for communication by teaching them the words to use is helpful in minimizing whining. You must also teach them about tone of voice at the same time. Because the right words are not helpful if they are being whined. Teach the child tone of voice by providing an example to them. Show them with your own voice how to ask nicely.

5. Be a Model of No Whining Allowed

Children are always paying attention to their parent’s behavior. Their parents and caregivers are their role models. This makes it very important for parents and caregivers to model good behavior.

If you are whining and your child witnesses you doing this on a regular basis, then they will learn to do the same behavior. If you model good communication skills and making requests using a pleasant and civil voice, then they will learn to do that instead of whining.

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6. Praise Them for Changing Their Behavior

If you have a child who is a habitual whiner, then you need to focus on their positive behavior. Using the consequences for the whining is helpful and still applies, but you don’t want your child to feel defeated.

You can help make the situation positive by praising their good behavior. This means when they whine and you ask them to stop and they in turn, stop the whining and ask you again in a nice voice, you respond with praise.

The following is an example: “You did such a good job saying that like a big girl and you changed the way you said that to me. Thank you for saying that to me so nicely, I will get you that glass of milk you asked for.”

Praise reinforces their good behavior. The positive feedback from a parent is greatly desired from a child. Be sure to praise your child when they change their whining into a good tone of voice and good communication skills.

7. Let Them Know What Whining Sounds Like

Some children don’t realize how annoying and irritating whining can be. They don’t know what it really sounds like coming from someone else. If they are in the habit of whining, then show them what it sounds like.

Don’t do it when you are in the middle of one of their whining episodes. Wait until things are calmed and you can have a one-on-one heart to heart chat with them in a sincere manner.

Don’t mock them. Instead, you can say something along these lines: “When you whine, it sounds like this….(fill in with an example of a recent whine)…and it makes me not want to listen to you. I need you to work on using your big girl voice by asking like this….” Then, follow it up by converting the whining statement into a nicely said statement using a good tone of voice.

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Providing them with an example and allowing them to hear what they sound like to you helps them to better understand how annoying and irritating whining can be.

8. Assess What the Whine is Really Saying

Some children whine because they are overtired or they are seeking attention. If whining occurs and it is not your child’s typical behavior, then you may need to assess why they are whining.

My son Alex is typically not a whiner. When he begins to whine, we now recognize that it is because he is really tired and needs a nap or needs to go to bed for the night. If we put him in timeout for whining, it seems that his behavior becomes worse because he is overtired. The solution is to get him down for a nap, or put him to bed. In this situation, we don’t give a timeout. Instead, we focus on the task at hand, which is getting our overtired child put into his bed for some much needed sleep.

If your child is whining because they are in need of attention, then take the time to give them the attention that they are craving. They are only little once. A few minutes of your undivided attention can make all the difference in the world to your child.

It’s Up to You as the Parent to Make Change Happen

Children will naturally whine. It is part of development. For younger children, especially toddlers, the tendency for whining is more likely because they lack good communication skills. It is up to parents to correct the behavior by showing children the right ways to communicate.

If the behavior persists, then parents and caregivers should use a reward or consequence system consistently to change the behavior.

Whining doesn’t need to be a part of your home life. You can set the standard first by your own example of not whining and secondly, by having a system in place for handling whining when it does occur.

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Featured photo credit: Simon Rae via unsplash.com

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