Negativity and Positivity; How Easily they Spread

Positivity and Professionalism

Negativity – the quality or state of being negative

Positivity – The quality or state of being positive; actualness; certainty; confidence; peremptoriness; dogmatism

Definitions provided by Webster’s Dictionary

Negativity and positivity are, essentially, opposite sides of the same coin.

The dangers of negativity are just as strong as the powers of positivity.  The two are equally contagious and easily spread.

We are all products of our past life experiences.  While some have been conditioned to view the glass as half empty, others were taught to see the glass as half full.

Many people carry negative attitudes with them because it is all they know.  Such people may have been raised by cynical parents, or perhaps were surrounded by pessimistic siblings, classmates, or teachers.  Inbred negativity causes people to consistently focus on the cons of any situation.

On the opposite end, positive people will typically attempt to find the best of a situation.  Such people may have been surrounded and influenced by positive thinkers.  They were likely taught to focus on the good and not dwell on the bad.

Though it is important to acknowledge the negative aspects of a situation, there is no need to allow for such aspects to affect your attitude and cloud your judgement.

Let’s envision a hypothetical scenario involving a negative-minded person and a positive-minded person, both of whom have accepted new positions with companies.

A negative person is likely to immediately begin fixating on negative components of his or her situation.  Such a person is quick to judge coworkers, criticize the company for perceived flaws, and complain about his or her salary.

This type of person will generally concentrate on negative aspects, and is likely to share unhealthy thoughts and feelings with his or her peers.  While some are able to remain quietly negative, many feel compelled to speak their minds and spread their displeasure.  Is this venting, or public self-pity and wallowing?

This employee is setting a bad example and, consequently, may cause his or her coworkers to chime in on the negativity.

On the flip side of the coin, a positive person will view his or her new job with a much healthier mindset.  A positive person will likely view a new career position as a fresh start, a chance to learn crucial information, and an opportunity to network and establish relationships.  Such a person will have a positive affect on others, who are apt to jump aboard the optimism train.

Though we are products of our pasts, we are also significantly influenced by our current surroundings and situations.  People brought up in positive environments can be negatively affected by present negativity.

The same holds true for those who grew and developed in negative atmospheres.  These types of people can be positively impacted by favorable current situations.

Though we develop through our life experiences, we need not let forgettable past situations define who we are and who we become.  We can all make conscious efforts to surround ourselves with positive people in healthy settings.

As you enter your next situation requiring social interaction, ask yourself one question.  Is your glass half empty, or half full?  Remember, your attitude will have a direct impact on the attitudes of those around you.

“So I was sitting in my cubicle today, and I realized, ever since I started working, every single day of my life has been worse than the day before it.  So that means that every single day that you see me, that’s on the worst day of my life.”
-Ron Livingston as Peter Gibbons, Office Space