Some people in your life will uplift you and be a positive influence, but this isn’t the case with everyone. Even if you consider yourself a strong, independent person, you may not realize the effect a negative person can have on your life. This varies from person to person. And sometimes, it’s hard to tell whether you’re spending too much time with a negative person. If someone in your life has never anything good to say and they’re a classic negative Nancy, here are signs you might be spending too much time with this person.
1. You Complain About This Person- All The Time
If you’re spending too much time with a negative person, you might discover that you talk about this person a lot. And unfortunately, the things you have to say about this person are not positive. You may think this person is a complainer, annoying, selfish, or he may have other traits you find undesirable.
There’s nothing wrong with the occasional complaint about a person. However, you should observe how often you speak negatively about someone. Does this person come to mind as a passing thought? Or are you consumed with this person’s negative ways? If so, you’re probably spending too much time with this individual and you need to cut back. The less you deal with his nasty or negative ways, the better you’ll feel.
2. You Lose Your Cool Around This Person
If you’re a hot head or someone who loses his temper quickly, the fact that one of your friends makes you lose your cool isn’t a big deal. But if you’re a happy person who gets along with everyone and keeps the peace, yet a particular person in your life makes your blood boil and brings out your evil side, you might be spending too much time with this person.
Sometimes, we can downplay the influence others have on our personality. Even if you’re a positive and optimistic person who doesn’t get upset, you might lose your temper around instigators and troublemakers. You don’t need these types of people in your life, and you certainly don’t need to be around people who bring out the worst in you. The truth is, some people may do and say unkind things just to make you upset.
3. Your Self-Esteem Nosedives
When you’re around someone who’s negative, this person might attack your character, which can cause your self-esteem and self confidence to nosedive. Misery loves company. And some negative people are unhappy with themselves and their lives. If you’re a happy person and you’re always in a positive mood, a negative person may not like this about you. As a result, this person may do and say things to bring you down. They might criticize the way you talk and the way you dress, or they might attack other things about you. Even if you try to let their remarks roll off your shoulders, what they say can play with your mind and cause self-doubt.
At the end of the day, you don’t deserve this type of abuse. You deserve to be around people who will support and help you feel good about yourself. So if you’re with a friend, a coworker or a relative, and you always feel bad about yourself after an encounter with this person, you need to limit contact and realize they have the problem, not you.
4. Their Behavior Rubs Off On You
A negative person’s behavior can also rub off on you over time. Peer pressure is strong no matter your age. It doesn’t matter if you’re in college or work a full-time job. If there are people in your life who are argumentative, lazy, complainers and selfish, being in their company for too long can have a tremendous impact on your behavior and actions.
There’s nothing wrong with adopting another person’s good habits, but you should steer clear of their bad one. In some cases, negative persons may encourage you to modify some of your good habits and act out of your normal character. It’s important that you recognize this behavior. It can be subtle and happen over time, to the point where you don’t even realize a change in yourself, until it’s too late.
5. You Can't Wait to Get Away from This Person
Does a coworker constantly extend invitations to lunch at his house, yet you make excuses because you don’t want to hang out with this person? Is it because you feel this person is negative and you want to limit contact? Sometimes, it can be difficult for us to acknowledge a negative person in our lives. However, if you dread being in close contact with a person, your feelings might be justified.
You may feel guilty about keeping distance between you and this person, but sometimes, it is best to follow your gut instinct. If you’re getting a vibe about someone and you feel it’s better to keep him or her at arm’s length, go with this feeling—even if you can’t pinpoint the reason. Your assumptions might prove wrong. And if not, you can always establish a relationship with the person at another time.
6. Your Outlook on Life Changes
Some people in our lives don’t intend on being negative, but it’s their makeup. If you know someone who’s a chronic complainer or has a negative outlook on life, you might come to this person’s aid and offer assistance. Maybe you’re hoping your positivity will rub off on him and put him in a better mood and mindset. This is commendable, but be careful.
At the end of the day, you can only help people who want your assistance, and who cooperate with your help. If you spend too much time with a person who constantly plays the victim card and doesn’t take responsibility for his actions or life. Or if this person walks around thinking everyone’s out to get him, his negatively can gradually affect your outlook on life. This person may feed your mind with negative thinking, and you can go from being a happy person to Debbie downer.
7. You Receive Warnings About This Person
Then again, maybe you have a friend who’s super cool and fun to be around. If you have a good time together, you may not realize the negative influence this person has on your life. In this case, you need to listen to people who care about you.
Your relatives, friends and coworkers might notice a change in your behavior—and not for the better. They may feel that a new friend or new circle is responsible for this change and suggest that you watch your association. Instinctively, you might become defensive. But if you receive these warnings from more than one person, there might be reasons for their concern. Rather than brush it off, do a self-evaluation to determine whether the person in question influences your life for the better or the worse. For example: Do you have any new bad habits? Has your speech or thinking changed recently?
See Also: How to Respond to Negativity at Work
Negative people in your life are like poison. The negativity can be subtle, yet it can have a huge impact on your thinking and actions. The sooner you’re able to identify these people and limit contact, the easier it’ll be to maintain a positive outlook.