Reacting negatively to situations can be exhausting. It’s like living in a state of perpetual eye-rolling with the phrase here we go again banging away in the background. If your go-to response in life is negative, your actions might look like:

  • Blaming others when things go wrong.
  • Verbalizing your displeasure with circumstances
  • Being critical despite good things happening
  • Failing to be optimistic when things are up in the air.
  • Negative forecasting

Being negative can be draining. Living in a perpetual state of annoyance and focusing on negative things can cause your mind, body, and spirit to suffer. People who tend to respond negatively have higher incidents of:

  • Digestive issues
  • Headaches
  • Back pain
  • High blood pressure
  • Short-lived relationships

In fact, negative people can often find themselves at odds with friends, family, and co-workers simply because they focus on the negative rather than the positive. Overcoming negativity takes work when it doesn’t feel normal to be positive. Taking action to destroy negative behaviors might require some faking it until making it, but that’s ok, it’s worth it. Try these positive actions to override negative behaviors and start to see your relationships and your health improve.

Action #1: Practice a mantra- If there are activities that trigger your negativity, it is great to create a mantra to recite while you rewire your brain. If watching sports causes you to rage or driving in traffic makes you want to scream, create a mantra to distract you and remind you that your goal is not to overreact and be negative. Create a fun rhyme or saying that you can recite when you feel stressed in negative situations.

Action #2: Get a buddy- Breaking tough habits can take a village. Recruit a partner to talk to while you are practicing letting go of negativity. Being able to vent to one safe person is a better alternative to griping to many people and making a negative impact.

Action #3: Find a creative outlet- There are appropriate ways to voice frustrations or work through annoyances without bringing everyone around you down. Find a creative outlet that allows for releasing steam in a socially appropriate way. You might enjoy kickboxing, spoken word poetry, or forms of art. There is always a healthy way to express negative feelings that don’t include dousing others with negativity.

There are actions that can reduce and eliminate negativity as a go-to reaction. Being able to replace a negative trait with a positive one can help ease the habit of being negative and recreate a more positive attitude in its place.