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How to Deal With Negative People & Stop Them Sapping Your Energy

Do you have a negative person in your life who sucks the happiness right out of you? Learn how to deal with negative people and regain your smile.

how to deal with negative people

Some people are just born with that glass half empty mindset. Then, there are some who are so intent on being downright negative every second of the day, it drains your energy simply being around them. Remember Eeyore from Winnie The Pooh? That’s a collective character for all negative people! The good news is that you can preserve your energy and avoid feeling like the world is falling down around you, by learning how to deal with negative people.

This isn’t just an occasional thing to deal with. Negative people are so common that there are terms used to describe them.

For instance, have you heard about ‘energy vampires’ or ‘mood hooverers?’ Yep, they’re talking about negative people! [Read: Is your negative thinking ruining your life? 20 signs and tips to cope]

Being around negative people makes you feel like you’re under a dark cloud

It’s not a stretch to say that when you’re around someone who exudes negativity from every pore, you feel like all the positivity and hope has been sucked out of your soul. It’s like there’s a dark cloud over your head.

All the things you planned to do that day suddenly don’t seem worth it and you would rather just go back to bed. If you feel that way, you’ve been a victim of an energy vampire!

You see, negative people see everything as miserable and dark. They don’t look at things and think “maybe it will work out,” they just assume it won’t work at all. It’s not even going to cross their mind that today will be a lovely day because the sun is shining. They’re just waiting for the rain to come.

They also tend to talk in that dreary, down kind of way. Everything is monotonous and on one level. They look for the conspiracy theory in everything and assume that there’s a negative reason for everything. Annoying and downright misery-inducing! [Read: What is an energy vampire? 19 signs to spot those people in your life ASAP]

How to deal with negative people

The thing about having a negative person in your life is that, besides the obvious negativity, they’re also attention seekers. They somehow revel in the fact that they can rub others the wrong way simply by being themselves.

However, many energy vampires don’t even realize that they’re affecting others around them. This is why you have to take the necessary steps to ensure that they don’t drive you crazy.

It is not your job to make them feel better, so here are the most simple ways to stop negative people from ruining your day. [Read: 16 attention whore signs you need to watch out for]

1. Tell yourself it’s temporary

Unless you’re married or related to this person, keep telling yourself that being around them is only temporary and you will be just fine.

For example, if you’re working with a negative person, you get to bounce off at 5 PM, and not have to worry about being in contact with them for the rest of the evening.

If you have a negative friend, make a conscious effort not to spend as much time together. [Read: When and how to end a friendship if they’re toxic and holding you back]

2. Hang out in a group

Misery loves company, so don’t do one-on-one sessions with a negative person; all their negativity will be directed toward you.

If you have to hang out with this person, be sure to schedule group meet-ups. This way, the negativity will be spread out amongst all of you and you won’t feel it as much. That’s one of the easiest ways to deal with negative people. [Read: Negative Nancy – 17 traits and ways to deal with their attitude]

3. Refuse to get sucked in

Always remember that you can’t fix this person, so there’s no point in getting sucked into their problems. Prevent things from getting too heavy and serious by changing the topic every time this person brings up something negative.

For example, instead of listening to them complain about their job, change the conversation to a funny anecdote. [Read: How to be more positive – 24 steps to a happy and dramatic life shift]

4. Offer your help

Casually state that you notice them being very stressed out and ask if there’s anything you can do to help. You showing that you care may ease their negativity—but at the same time, don’t forget point number 3.

Be sure not to get sucked too deeply into their problems, because at the end of the day, only they *or expensive therapists* can really make a difference.

5. Empathize with them

Their negativity may not bother you as much once you put yourself in their shoes. For all you know, this person may be super negative because of something horrible that happened to them. [Read: How to be more empathetic and 16 steps to make anyone feel more understood]

6. Limit the amount of time you spend with negative people

Don’t hang out together all the time and only make an effort to see this person during important events such as weddings, birthdays, and nights out on the town with other people.

The less time you spend together, the less you have to deal with their negativity.

7. Focus on happy things

A simple way to clear the air of any negativity is to chat about positive things. Who can get upset talking about kittens, rainbows, and butterflies?

Stay away from depressing topics like their love life, work, and anything to do with politics. [Read: 13 happy things you need for a perfectly happy life]

8. Tell them how you feel

It could be that the negative person in your life doesn’t actually realize the impact their negativity has on those around them. They might not even label themselves as negative at all.

While you shouldn’t go in there all guns blazing and say “hey, stop being so negative,” you can highlight it. Sometimes, all your energy vampire needs is an intervention.

Explain that although you like spending time with them, they’re often very negative and it makes you feel quite down. You never know, it could be all it takes to snap them out of their funk. [Read: How to tell someone who you feel about them and share your feelings]

9. Zone them out

Only attempt this if you have tried step 7, to no avail. If you’re in the company of someone negative and don’t want to deal with their drama, simply zone them out and let someone else take the reins.

If it’s just the two of you, say you have to run off for an emergency meeting.

10. Don’t be a doormat

Don’t let them talk your ear off, don’t let them unload all their negativity onto you, and definitely don’t let them take advantage of you.

How efficient and happy can you be if you have this huge, negative cloud hanging over you? You’ve got to look after yourself, too.

11. Stay calm and positive around negative people

Don’t let this person’s attitude wreck your whole day. If you have to, walk away from the situation and use a good excuse such as an emergency family issue, work meeting, and so on.

We’re sure you can think of something believable, so don’t be afraid to tell a little white lie to keep your sanity intact. [Read: 14 calm ways to recognize mean people and deal with them]

12. Get rid of them

No, don’t whack them and leave them to swim with the fishes. Slice them out of your life, instead. Trust us when we say that your life will be much better if you don’t have to deal with this person’s toxic behavior.

Surround yourself with happy folks, and you will find that the world is a much more beautiful place than it was before. [Read: Cutting people out of your life – Easier when done the right way]

Enough with the negativity, it’s time to find some sunshine!

No matter how close you are to this person, there is no point strapping yourself to them and absorbing all their negativity. It will do nothing but turn you into one of them. If it’s a family member or spouse whom you can’t run away from so easily, be sure to tell them how you feel.

Life is far too short to focus on the glass being half empty all the time. It can just as easily be half full!

[Read: 25 bad, toxic friends you need to unfriend from your life]

If there’s no change in their negativity, sign them up for counseling—because at this point, only a professional can help them work out their negative issues. Dealing with a negative person isn’t easy, but you have to cut them off if they don’t show any signs of change.

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Preeti Tewari Serai
Preeti Serai
Preeti, the founder of LovePanky, is an eternal optimist and believer in the beauty of love and life. With an exhaustive experience in love, relationships, and ...