An interesting thing happens when you start following your passion – you meet resistance, both internally and externally.
You don’t really believe you deserve to do what you love, so many of your deep-seated limiting beliefs come racing to the surface.
You’re plagued by thoughts like; Am I good enough? Can I pull this off? What if I fail? Who am I to aim so high?
But as you try to move your life forward, don’t be surprised if you attract resistance from people around you too.
Family members, friends, work colleagues and acquaintances may all criticize the path you have chosen. They might not understand your choices or even support you.
This is nothing to be afraid of and is part of the process.
Because in essence, you are challenging their beliefs. You might even be threatening them with your unconventional lifestyle choices.
I know this sounds far-fetched. How can you possibly be a threat to them, right?
The reality is that anyone can go after his or her dreams, including the people who are critical of you. But the reason that most people don’t is because of fear. They are seduced by their own excuses.
The world is full of a lot of fear and a lot of negativity, and a lot of judgment. I just think people need to start shifting into joy and happiness. As corny as it sounds, we need to make a shift.
~ Ellen DeGeneres
When you decide to take action on your goals you show people that you are not going to listen to your excuses any more. You refuse to be stopped and you commit to doing whatever it takes to create your dream life.
The energy generated by this new-found passion and determination can be a powerful magnet to some people as well as a threat to others.
Because as you forge your new path you stop being a follower and start becoming a leader. You are passionate, joyful and making a stand against mediocrity by seeking a bigger, better life for yourself.
Naturally, some people are inspired by what you’re doing. They have similar goals for themselves and will reach out to you for help.
But for other negative people you are simply holding up a mirror to their own inadequacies. Seeing you striving for greatness makes them jealous, resentful, even angry.
I’ve always done things a little differently so I am no stranger to disapproval or criticism.
In the past, negative comments used to really affect me, especially if they came from loved ones. But over the years I’ve developed a thicker skin and learned how to handle negativity.
If you’re starting out it’s important that you learn how to deal with negative people and don’t let the haters gets you down. Here are 3 strategies from my own experience that can help.
3 Ways To Deal With Negative People
1. Avoid Negative People
One of the best things I’ve done in my life is to cut myself off from negative people as soon as possible.
You know the ones I mean.
The Debbie Downers who are quick to tell you everything that’s wrong with your life, why you can’t do what you want and how you’ve always failed before so why should this time be any different.
As Joel Osteen tells us, you can’t have a positive life if you hang out with negative people.
So cut negative people out of your life as soon as possible.
I know, I know.
Easier said than done.
It isn’t always possible to eliminate negative people from your life especially if they are family members or close friends.
But putting some distance between you and them at least until you gain clarity about your ideas or while you build your business will pay off.
In some cases though, avoidance isn’t enough.
You will have to speak up, especially if you encounter people who constantly criticize you or try to push you around.
They may say that they are looking out for you or they don’t want you to fail but deep down, you are probably challenging their belief system.
Most people have a hard time believing that you can live a passionate life because they don’t accept it for themselves.
So go easy on them.
Be firm but be respectful.
Remember, everyone is doing the best they can with what they have wherever they are right now.
It’s not your job to convince others to see things your way, least of all the negative people in your life.
Smile and thank them for their feedback.
Tell them that you have made up your mind and that if things don’t work out as planned you will take it as a life lesson.
2. Have Faith In Yourself
One of the things that I had to learn in the early days of my business was to trust myself, especially when it came to making decisions.
I had also just failed in my previous venture so family and friends were quick to point the finger.
As a result, my confidence was bruised.
But even though I was scared and not always sure I was doing the right thing, I kept going and I kept believing.
I read a lot about my industry.
I invested in training courses and mentors.
I taught myself what I needed to know from YouTube videos.
I observed what successful people in my industry were doing.
Most all, I was brave enough to test things out.
Slowly but surely things began to fall into place. I managed to get from A to B and then from B to C and so on.
It’s the same for you.
When you are starting out chances are you won’t have a support network around you. It could be that everyone disapproves of your decision.
At times like this dig deep and trust yourself.
Only you know what’s right for you. Only by taking action will you find out what works.
3. Be A Leader
Many years ago Gandhi said,
Be the change you want to see in the world
As tempting as it is, don’t try to justify what you are doing to the people around you. Your friends and family have probably already made up their minds about you.
In their eyes, you are still the kid sister who followed them around, trying to fit in. Or the awkward teenager who fell for every fashion or fad in order to carve out her own identity.
And as for the haters, they will hate you regardless what you say or do.
You don’t need anyone’s approval to succeed. So don’t waste time trying to convince negative people about your lifestyle choices.
Instead, build your business quietly without any noise or fanfare.
Let your success do the talking for you and lead by example.
When they are ready, those same people who criticized you will be stunned by your results. They may even approach you for help.
That’s how you become a leader.
When you start following your passion you are making a stand against mediocrity. You are choosing an unconventional path that may seem strange to the outside world.
You are breaking new ground so expect it to be uncomfortable.
This will bring up resistance within you as well as attracting negativity from the people around you.
Whatever happens, don’t let negative people stop you from living a life full of passion and meaning. Keep taking action towards your dreams because deep down only you know what’s right for you.
Over To You
What strategies have helped you deal with negative people in your life? Please share you thoughts below.