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How To Stay Happy When You're Around Negative People


One of the hardest things to do is to stay positive and happy when you’re around negative people. And, one of the hardest things to figure out is how to stay happy if you’re surrounded by co-workers, friends, or family members who are bitter. Easily angered, constantly upset, and cynical people can wear you down over time.

I’ve been in offices where the atmosphere was so toxic that it not only stifled any creativity but it seemed to suck all the optimism out of the air. Negativity is not good for business nor is it good for the well-being of humans. Knowing how to stay happy can not only improve your personal life but work life as well.

When someone is happy and looking at the bright side of life, it’s annoying to people who aren’t happy. It’s been said that misery loves company but a more accurate way to put it, is that those who are miserable want validation for their misery. Staying happy in their presence is intentionally made more difficult. They get that validation when others are just as discontented and pessimistic as they are.

Emotions have a way of spreading, and it can be especially aggravating when you’re forced to be around a group of people like your co-workers whom you might not choose to be with if it wasn’t mandatory. You can’t tell your project leader to snap out of it because they’re bringing everyone else down. So, how can you stay happy and keep from becoming toxic by association?

How to Stay Happy When In Any Situation

Take Action

When you’re figuring out how to stay happy, sometimes the key is just only putting yourself in positive situations. Or, you can do something to transform it. “When you are with negative people you can politely excuse yourself and leave the room,” says motivational speaker, and author of “Choose Happy”, Jill Liberman. “If that is not possible, don’t fuel the conversation. Avoid allowing them to impact you. Offer the positive side, perhaps you can influence them.”

See The Positivity In Others (Even If They Don’t See It)

When someone is caught up in their own feelings, it can be challenging for them to see an alternative. But, learning how to stay happy often means just focusing on the positive in people. Inspirational storyteller, Nihar Suthar suggests making it a point to see positivity in the people around you. “I always try to think about 3 positive qualities in each person I am around, no matter how negative that person might be. By seeing them in a positive light, I am also able to remain positive while working and interacting with them.”

Create Boundaries

When all else fails, boundaries are crucial when learning how to stay happy. You can’t make someone be happy if they’re around you, but you can let them know where you draw the line which makes staying happy easier to achieve. Dr. Lori Whatley says, “Help them understand what you will and will not tolerate from them regarding their negativity, and then follow through.”

Don’t Take It Personally

This may sound easier said than done. If someone seems to go into an immediate bad mood whenever you’re around it’s easy to assume that you’re the cause. Author Milana Perepyolkina says, “No matter how negative someone is, it’s never about you.”

Be Confident

Staying happy means not letting someone else destroy your self-esteem. You know who you are, where you’re going in life, and that under no circumstances are you going to let a group of people who aren’t happy cause you to doubt yourself or your abilities.

Treat Them With Kindness

Whether they’re going through a bad time or are in a constant bad mood, you have no idea what’s happening in their life. Staying happy often means treating others with unconditional kindness. We all need some kindness and compassion—even if when we have our walls up. If you’re kind to them and expect nothing in return, you may be pleasantly surprised when they start to be nicer to you.

Positivity Bomb Them

Sometimes staying happy means offering a double dose of positivity to those who aren’t. Smile at them and say “Hello” every morning, even if all you get back is a grunt or a complaint. Eventually, you may end up wearing them down to the point where they find being happy is just easier. When you’re learning how to stay happy, offering positivity is a surefire bet.

Reinforce Your Own Happiness

Be grateful and focus on the things that are going well in your life. Look at the goals you’ve achieved, the tasks you’ve accomplished, and all the triumphs and rewards you’ve earned along the way. When you figure out how to stay happy, that happiness attracts more happiness. That’s why the best tip for how to stay happy is to surround yourself with happy people. There’s a reason why people say happiness is contagious.

Holding your ground and forcing people to rise to your good mood is crucial to staying happy. It’s how you avoid others affecting your job performance or your health. And, once you understand how to stay happy in any situation you’ll find your calmer mood improves stress, migraines, heart, and digestive issues.

By staying happy in any environment, you’re taking care of yourself, and that’s the best thing you can do. Take your positive-power back, and use it as a shield against negativity.