I read an article yesterday in Psychology Today. It was written in March 2013 and dealt with people who are negative. I found out more than I thought I would and was surprised. The author said:

“Negativity is like second-hand smoke. It not only permeates the room but has dire health consequences for those unfortunate enough to be in its path.”

According to neuroscientists, “Our brains are hardwired to focus more on the negative, including worry, disapproval, danger, illness, fear, and even the word ‘no’, and as we verbally express these thoughts, additional stress chemicals are released.

The listener’s brain is changed too, feeling more anxious and irritable. Trust and cooperation between people is undermined. In short, negativity can destroy family relationships and cause emotional harm.”

She goes on to say that when she first met her husband his license plate read “YESSS”. He said it helped him remember to think positively, to say “yes” instead of “no” and that he was much happier when he said “yes” to life. She realized “he already understood what it has taken neuroscientists years to discover – that negativity is linked to increased stress and unhappiness.”

Furthermore the article stated that negativity and stress are related. That our brains release stress-producing hormones and neurotransmitters that create havoc with our normal functioning. That positive thoughts affect the brain. That we should develop a 3 to 1 ratio of positive to negative thoughts to achieve balance in our life, thus we’ll be more likely to find ourselves in caring relationships and productive work situations.

I’m definitely on board with this one.

Posted on August 9, 2013, in Blog Posts and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. I totally agree with this study, Patti. My husband is an optimist, and he balances out my negative (or realistic, as I like to say) qualities. Thanks for sharing this!

  2. Patti, now this is something we can all agree with … to face life with the glass half full. There have been other studies … one in the eighties that I’ve tortured my kids with since.

    It has been shown that the very act of smiling can change our mind set. That if we smile, the brain believes we are happy.

    Try it. Smile when you’re feeling bad and see if it doesn’t make you feel better. I guess the song writer knew a thing or two also.

    “Smile when you’re feeling blue. Smile that’s the thing to do ….” Oh go look it up on 🙂

  3. I totally agree – I have worked where one negative person kept the office in turmoil all the time. It’s all a matter of attitude – determine within yourself to stay upbeat and positive and that affects others too but in a good way.

  4. I so agree with this, Patti. I do struggle to “find the bright side” in everything. I have a tendency to hear the negative and then react. I have to make a mental effort to not let negativity take over. My facebook post on my author page today is directly related to this!

  5. Like Ann, I’ve worked in an office where one negative person kept everyone else in turmoil and it was awful. I try to stay positive and upbeat, but some days it seems like an insurmountable task. On those days, I find a good book and hide. 🙂

  6. I agree! Negativity is so exhausting. It doesn’t take long for me to feel run-down and discouraged—whether the negativity is my own or someone else’s. Great post!

%d bloggers like this: