Do you have a work colleague who constantly tries to pull you into their negativity? When you hang out with friends, is there one person in the group who brings everyone else down with complaints? At family gatherings, does someone criticize and judge everyone? Having these types of toxic conversations can be frustrating and exhausting. Toxic conversations are unproductive, create negativity, and cause you to feel stuck.
Focus on what you can control in the situation and limit toxic conversations for your brand, success, and self-care.
- Brand: Your brand is how you represent yourself and the impression you leave in the mind of others. If you participate in this negative conversation, you are spreading toxicity—whether willingly or not—it can harm your brand.
- Success: Your success is significantly impacted by who you spend the most time with. Social Psychologist, Dr. David McClelland agrees that People with whom you habitually associate with are called your “reference group,” and these people determine as much as 95 percent of your success or failure in life.
- Self-Care: You have thousands of thoughts per day and if too many of them are negative, it pulls you down. Take care of you by committing to a positive approach in conversations.
What are the best ways to limit toxic conversations? Be purposeful in who you choose to spend your time with at work and home. If you find yourself in a negative situation, make a positive comment. If that does not work, limit your time, and then move on to talking with someone else. For holiday gatherings where you know you may encounter negative people, set the amount of time you will attend and then make sure you leave. Focus on why you are going to the gathering and what is important to you about attending. Avoid certain topics that have caused conflict in the past, and if someone else brings up the topic, commit to not engaging in the discussion.
Be true to your brand, take care of yourself, and increase your success by limiting toxic conversations. What is one way you will commit to limiting toxic conversations? Share your thoughts and experiences, join the conversation below.