What you can and cannot choose

by Michele on August 9, 2012

Choose wisely when you have a choiceThere are some things in business and in life you have a choice over, and some you do not.  One of the biggest of these is how other people act.  You simply cannot make their choices for them.  You also cannot choose their attitude.  What you can choose though is how you interact with them.

Many people are very negative and have an attitude that doesn’t support their own success or yours.  A lot of people like to blame outside forces for their situation instead of doing the best they can within whatever those outside circumstances are.

As you make the journey up the entrepreneurial mountain, many people will try to stop you, dissuade you and discourage you.  They may be people you like or even love, and they may not even know they are doing it.

It’s not necessary to cut ties with everyone you know, but it does pay to monitor the effect being around negative people has on you.   It may be harder to maintain a positive outlook and take personal responsibility for your life if most of the people you spend time with don’t.  It may be hard to shake off the effects of that draining interaction and get back to work.

Assuming you don’t want to ditch everyone you know, how can you handle negative people with the least impact on yourself?

You may want to invite some new personal and business connections into your life.  Having new people who share your positive outlook will leave less space for the negative people.  It will also provide you with some uplifting energy to counterbalance the negativity.

Spending more time with positive, successful people will change you and make you more like them.  The negative people in your life may come along with you or they may naturally select a smaller role in your life since you don’t have as much in common.

You may want to place some limits on the negative people in your life.  Limit how much time you spend together, what you talk about or how much time you spend talking about your business and life.  It’s always important to be polite and not deliberately hurt other people’s feelings, but if someone is hurting your success don’t be afraid to set some limits in a kind and gentle manner.

If you think there’s value to it, you can call the behavior to the person’s attention.  I caution against this though unless you sincerely believe it will serve the other person and you think they actually want to learn and grow.  Don’t confront a negative person for your own benefit.  You’ll end up frustrated and probably make the other person mad.

What choices do you make when dealing with negative people?  Tell me about it in the comments.


  1. If you keep reading inspirational articles and books, it will motivate you to stay positive. You will see that everyone goes through rough patches but that they do make it through. It will be worth it in the end. Also, there are some good forums you can join where even just reading the other posts can motivate you to stay positive. Or, if you want to make a posting, you can gain support from others as well. Who knows, you may even be able to answer some one else’s post and help them out too. Forget about your problems and just go out and do something fun. Go to a movie, go out with some fun, positive thinking friends, go to a play, go for a bike ride, just do something. Get out and just enjoy yourself for a little bit. Sometimes, we just get so wrapped up in our problems that we forget to have fun. Taking a break will re-energize you and you may find that things aren’t as bad as you thought. So, there’s at least 7 things you can do to help you remain in a positive frame of mind when your life seems to be falling apart. I hope it helps. I also want to say, good for you in recognizing the need to stay positive when it can be easier to just go with the negative flow. It shows you are on the right path and you will make it through your current situation with flying colours. Hang in there. This will pass and you will soon be experiencing your new, more positive life.

    1. Michele says:

      Thanks for all the great ideas and your uplifting comments!

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