Connect with us

Life

Negativity Outweighs Positivity but How Much Positivity Is Actually Needed to Equalize the Two?

Avatar

Published

on

positivity

Walking out of a Starbucks in my suburban hometown, my hands were full carrying the Coffee & Frappuccino. The door opened up from someone walking in (with perfect timing I might add). They walked in first, but strangely, they didn’t hold the door open, I tried to do the stop the door trick with my foot. I managed it okay, but man, I was pissed.

My thoughts raced, “what did I do to deserve that? Did that person dislike me or even know me? What a jerk, how inconsiderate!” This simple everyday encounter bothered me quite frankly for the rest of the day. I became infected with negativity; my own reaction to this incident soured my mood and negatively affected my interactions with others.

That’s the power of a negative interaction! If this incident was different and the unknown person had held the door, the “thank you” would have followed and it would have felt good. However, in a matter of a few minutes, that positive feeling would have worn off.

Negative interactions carry much more weight than positive experiences. That’s one reason why it is easier to criticize than it is to compliment.

Compliment people. Magnify their strengths, not their weaknesses.” – Joyce Meyer

So, how much positivity is actually needed to offset the negative?

Dr. John Gottman’s research examined successful and unsuccessful marriages. He completed over twelve longitudinal studies and examined 3,000 couples, even following one couple for over 20 years. He eventually predicted marriages which would end in divorce with over 90% accuracy.

The ratio for positive to negative interactions for successful marriages was 5:1. Five positive experiences were needed for every one negative experience. Keep in mind this ratio was from our most sacred relationships, the one’s that we have invested in the most. On the other hand, unsuccessful couples had a 0.8 – 1 positive to negative ratio for experiences.

Negative experiences simply carry greater weight than positive experiences. It’s why we remember the bad more than the good. A put-down of a spouse in front of others is much more hurtful than the warm feeling of a “nice shirt honey” compliment. The bad outweighs the good, and it takes much more effort to correct a hurt.

If we are not positive with others in a 5:1 ratio, then a strange boomerang effect takes place in which we then become negative with ourselves. We give away what we possess in our mood, and if we give away our own negativity, then the negative spiral of negativity take place.

“If you want light to come into your life, you need to stand where it is shining.” – Guy Finley

The simplest way to become positive with ourselves is to be positive to others. If we are able to adopt the 5:1 principle with others, then we help ourselves as well as others. No one can help someone else without also helping themselves. Positivity must be deliberate. Set a goal to provide five positive comments, feedback, or interactions to every one negative encounter.

How do you make sure to positively impact others day? Let us know in the comments below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

Life

5 Ways to Rediscover Your Purpose in Life

Avatar

Published

on

Image Credit: Unsplash

Ever since I was a little girl, I wanted to be a writer. But my quintessential Indian father thought that was a terrible idea, and well, so did everybody else I knew. Eventually, thanks to nasty teachers and being in the wrong stream (IT engineering), I resigned myself to having a purposeless existence. But after graduation, I could not bring myself to conform any longer. So I dove into the world of writing. (more…)

Continue Reading

Life

4 Practices to Tame Your Inner Critic Starting Today

Avatar

Published

on

Image Credit: Unsplash

Given the stress and challenges of this past year, your inner critic may be at a dull roar by now. This harsh internal voice can contribute to “imposter syndrome” or a feeling that you’re not worthy of success. This roommate you would never choose might sound something like this: “I’m not doing anything well,” “I’m not as smart as my colleagues and not equipped for this job,” “I should be further along in my career; I’m stagnating,” “That person is so together,” “I am overwhelmed!” And as you listen to this inner voice, you may be thinking you are the only one in the world wired this way. The truth is, you are not alone. (more…)

Continue Reading

Life

4 Ways Unresolved Trauma Is Sabotaging Your Bank Account

Avatar

Published

on

Image Credit: Unsplash

It can be easy to run headlong into burnout when you live in a hustle culture where you’re told the answer to all of your financial problems is simply to work harder. The problem is that how hard you work may actually be part of what’s stifling your bank account. (more…)

Continue Reading

Life

Make These 4 Mindset Shifts to Optimize Yourself and Live an Incredible Life

Avatar

Published

on

Image Credit: Unsplash

We start every year with big goals and a desire to accomplish more than any previous year. We spend each day telling ourselves that tomorrow will be the day we’re going to start living life the way we’d like to live it. There’s always an inherent desire for more on the horizon but not acted upon. (more…)

Continue Reading

Trending