It was a grey day across London. Misty rain smudged the edges of the buildings reflected in the panoramic glass of the boardroom. The walnut polished veneer of the table was so bright in contrast. I shifted in my seat, uncomfortably recrossing my legs to stave off pins and needles. I was bored. I had heard it all before, my responses grew more candid. At least the dome of St Paul’s in the iconic skyline still impressed me. I stop talking. Dumbstruck I realised I had become that voice. I was radiating negativity and had lost the passion to even try to challenge the minds around me.
I was a fish swimming in the wrong direction.
I wasn’t wrong exactly, I just wasn’t right for this role. I needed to go.
We are all told to stay positive. To remove the negative voices in our life that drains us of our energy. We all know a ‘moaner’ who never takes personal responsibility for how they feel and please don’t let that be us! Role models remind us of the quote—
‘You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with .’ Jim Rohn
Yet we all have a negative voice. It has a vital purpose
I feel we should be very careful of outlawing it. Negative emotions need an outlet, working through. Sucking them up, cutting them off at the knees or just whitewashing over them won’t make them go away.
Negativity is one of our best inner alarms bells that we need to make a change.
Misery also does love company. Connections and friendships can be made sharing a frustration , “Oh thanks goodness you feel that way to. I thought it was only me.”
Yes I value gratitude, yes I want to work and hang out with people who take personal responsibility for their own happiness, yet I also value a good passionate rant that shares real feeling, depth of emotion and keen observation.
In fact, if you are feeling surrounded by negative voices and about to cut off individuals from your life, first check that you are not projecting. Suppressing negative thoughts can just amplify them, causing you to see them all around you. Is ‘x’ really bringing you down or are you only hearing what you are trying not to feel?
Hear the negative voice, but don’t be carried away by it. Back in that ‘bored’ room I could have taken the thoughts further. The role isn’t right, the career isn’t right, I’m not right and so on.
It maybe the catalyst for change, but in order to make that change for the better the balanced tone of the pragmatist needs to take over.
What do you want to keep from your current role?What do you enjoy on a good day in your current situation? Without the weight of history, what would need to change in the current picture in order to make it work for you? How can you make that happen?