If you’ve followed my blog for a little while, you’ll know that I’ve been posting Self-Editing tips that were inspired by agent Kelly Mortimer’s Grammar Guide. Kelly is an extremely giving soul, one of the hardest working people in the business, and an inspiration to me personally.
And I’ve never even met her.
Well, that’s not entirely true—I heard her speak at Write!Canada, and will hopefully post some of the great info she gave once I’m done with the self-editing tips. I also applied for an agent internship position with her a few months ago, and while I didn’t get the internship, I made it to the second last cut (with the final 9 people, out of the 50+ that applied). I was super thrilled to have made it that far, and I wish the woman who was chosen all the best. It’s going to be a tough job, but I bet she’ll exceed all of our expectations!
But anyway, the point I wanted to make today has to do with a trend I’ve seen recently.
It’s the resurgence of the Negative People. These people are a destructive force, convinced they are Right and Just in how they deal with problems and situations, and don’t care that logic has escaped their interactions with others. They don’t care who gets hurt or how they resolve things, as long as they are proved right in the end.
Kelly is going through something like this right now, and you can read about it on her blog right here. The stress and the negativity from certain people has forced her to cut back on her agenting duties and re-focus herself in order to improve her health, relationships, and enjoyment of life. I don’t blame her. It’s exhausting to fight the lies people spread about you. She doesn’t deserve this.
Another situation in my own circle of dance friends involves a few individuals who, for reasons unknown to me, decided to spread hostile rumors about a warm, caring dance instructor who I teach for. I don’t know why they’ve done this, but I imagine there’s a sense of entitlement behind whatever they thought that the instructor owed them… and when they didn’t get it, they became Negative People and started spreading lies. She doesn’t deserve this.
In my own life, one particular individual has done something similar to me, based on an agreement she thought we had, but which wasn’t specified in the document I signed for her. Rather than discuss the situation with me like a rational human being, she’s resorted to more extreme measures.
So what’s with all the negative people?!?!
Note that the people being negative are all creative types: Writers, dancers, business owners.
Hilary Rettig has an excellent guide to beating procrastination (which I’ll talk about sometime in future) where she talks about negativity:
“Negativity is a serious problem for anyone, but particularly for ambitious dreamers… the nature of ambitious dreams is that they are tough to achieve and thus require a lot of perseverance… negativity impairs your objectivity and causes you to misread people and situations… you are bound to make erroneous assumptions.”
(The Little Guide to Beating Procrastination, Hillary Rettig; p.35)
Look: Success puts you in the line of fire from these people. They’re ambitious but passive, and can’t stand to see others succeeding where they’ve failed (or have yet to achieve success). It’s going to happen, and you’re going to be the target of hostility, even when you don’t deserve it. Especially when you don’t deserve it.
But instead of sitting back and taking it, don’t let anyone abuse you.
Get rid of these people in your life and replace them with a supportive community.
I’m tired of seeing people I care about get slandered and hurt by negative people. Fortunately the women I’ve mentioned above are strong enough to fight back, and I hope that if this is going on in your life, that this post will inspired you to stand up and deal with the Negative People in a way that pushes them OUT of your life and brings in a NEW, SUPPORTIVE group of people.
As your success grows, so will the naysayers.
Prove them wrong. Get rid of them.
Surround yourself with positive people who support your dreams and goals.
Don’t allow the Negative People to pull you away from achieving success.