Surround Yourself With Positive People in 2009

Self confidence is one of the keys to personal and professional success that I discuss inStraight Talk for Success.  If you want to become self confident you need to do three things.  1) Become an optimist.  2) Face your fears and take action.  3) Surround yourself with positive people.

Today, I’d like to focus on the importance of surrounding yourself with positive people.  Positive people help your self confidence because they tend to see the potential in you – even when you might not see it in yourself.  Negative people, on the other hand, will hinder your self confidence because they tend to reinforce your self doubt and negative beliefs about yourself.

As Mark Twain said…

“Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions.  Small people always do that.  The really great make you feel that you too can become great.”

Positive people help you realize your dreams.  Negative people take them away.  Positivity and optimism are contagious.  Unfortunately, so are negativity and pessimism.  Surround yourself with positive people, and you’ll become positive and self confident.  On the other hand, surround yourself with negative people, and you’ll become negative and lose your confidence.  Self confidence and negativity are mutually exclusive.

Negative people tend to come in two flavors: cynics and humorists.  Cynics are not fun.  They don’t like much of anything.  They’re the kind of people who complain about having to pay taxes after winning the lottery.  Humorists, on the other hand, can be seductive.  They’re clever and amusing.  They go around with a smirk on their face, using humor to point out everything that’s wrong.  At first, they can be fun to be around.  It’s like the two of you have an inside joke on the world.  In the long run though, their negativity will wear you out.

Set your boundaries.  Walk away from the negative people you encounter.  End your toxic friendships.  It may be difficult at first, but as you move away from negative people, you’ll become more positive and will attract positive people into your life. 

Forming a group of positive friends and colleagues is one way of surrounding yourself with positive people.  Make a commitment to meet with this group on a regular basis to discuss one another’s hopes, dreams and goals.  Exchange ideas and support one another.  You want to find  people who accept you for who you are, but are willing to challenge you, in a positive and constructive manner, to excel and to become a personal professional success.

I can’t take credit for this idea.  In Think and Grow Rich, probably the most famous self help book of all time, Napoleon Hill suggested the idea of Mastermind Alliances.  An article in the February 2009 issue of SUCCESS Magazine defines a Mastermind Alliance…

“The Mastermind principle consists of an alliance of two or more minds working in perfect harmony for the attainment of a common definite objective.  Success does not come without the cooperation of others.”

A Mastermind Alliance then, is a group of positive people helping one another achieve goals; exactly what I suggested above.

Of course if you want to surround yourself with positive people, you need to be a positive person yourself.  In his great book Ten Powerful Phrases for Positive People, Rich DeVos lists and discusses ten phrases you should incorporate into your daily vocabulary if you want to become known as a positive person:

• I’m wrong.
• I’m sorry.
• You can do it.
• I believe in you.
• I’m proud of you.
• Thank you.
• I need you.
• I trust you.
• I respect you.
• I love you.

Here are some of my best ideas on attracting positive people.

• Think positively.  Train yourself to see the opportunity in every difficulty and the good in every person you meet.  Be genuinely happy about not only your success – but the success of others in your life.

• Smile.  Smiles are contagious.  When you smile at others, they tend to return the favor.  A smile can have a positive impact on someone who is having a bad day.  By smiling, you’ll attract other smiling positive people – the kind of people who will help you fulfill your dreams.

 Speak positively.  You attract positive people when you say positive things.  When someone greets me by saying, “How are you?”  I always smile and answer “Great, and you?” even if I’m having a tough day.  This doesn’t mean that I don’t share my troubles with close friends.  I just don’t wear them on my sleeve.

The common sense point here is simple.  Self confidence is an important key to personal and professional success.  Surrounding yourself with positive people is a great way to build your self confidence.  Jettison the negative people in your life.  If you can’t remove them completely, do your best to keep them at arm’s length.  Build a network of positive people by being positive yourself.  Think positively.  Smile.  Speak positively.

That’s my take on how to surround yourself with positive people.  What’s yours?  Please leave a comment sharing your thoughts on how to build a network of positive people.  As always, thanks for reading – a sharing.

Bud

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