At some point we have all either encountered or been a Negative Nancy or Not-So-Nice Norman. It’s the person who is always up-in-arms about something, can never understand why bad things always happen to them, and who seem to be a professional victim.It is an exhausting way to live, but a hard habit to break.
I say habit because I really do believe it is a habit. These people don’t want to be negative, and most of the time they don’t even realize they are being negative. It is learned behavior, but that does not make it okay. It is not okay to only call your “friends” when you’re in a crisis, nor is it okay to mistreat the people who love you because, “that’s just the way I am.” If that’s just the way you are, then you need to work on becoming a better person.
Your friends and family stick around because they love you, but no one really wants to be around a grouchy, unhappy person all the time. So, if the phone calls lessen, or people just start disappearing, it’s time for self-evaluation. You don’t have to be this way, and can make a decision to be a more pleasant person.
For the friends of those Negative N’s, my advice is to set clear boundaries. If you have listened to this story, given advice and support, only to have it ignored, then it’s time to say no. No more calling you to vent about the same thing. No more going out in public with someone who ALWAYS causes a scene.
It is okay to love your Negative Nancys and Not-So-Nice Normans, but not at the expense of your own peace. Now that I know better, I am diligent about protecting my energy and I urge you to do the same. If necessary, cut your losses and move on. It is okay to say no. So when you’re being lured into the negative abyss, say it with me; No, Nancy/Nah! Norman
Do you have difficulty having “crucial conversations”? Here are some books that helped me grow!