Kicking You Out
Updated: May 21, 2020
I see it all the time on social media "Kick out all of the negative people in your life." "Don't hang around people who are not positive." "Positive vibes only." While I can agree that some people are toxic and should not be in your life, sometimes it is not so simple.
I think we need to distinguish negative energy from people who possess negative emotions temporarily. For instance, someone may have suffered a tragic loss in his life. He may be filled with anger and only see things from a negative point of view. He sees his glass as half empty. After a period, he may realize that he has been consumed by negativity and grief, and began to think more positively. But this shift takes time. It would be unfortunate if everyone in his life wanted "positive vibes only" and stopped hanging around him because he had "negative energy." In his case, his so-called negative energy was temporary.
Others may have more permanent or long-lasting negativity, but we cannot give up on them either. Sometimes, we may need to love them from a distance. Other times, up close. However, if a situation gets to be toxic and draining, we may need to cut the person involved off temporarily or permanently.
Still, others may seemingly be pessimistic because they are not telling us what we want to hear. But if we listen, they are providing insight and helping us grow.
Contrarily, others may only see negative in us and be bitter in their own lives, which takes some distancing of ourselves.
My suggestion is rather than giving blanket statements, we take each person on a case by case basis to see if they are a) grieving and need someone to reach out and help, b) pessimistic, or c) toxic. So let us not be so quick to root out everything that does not make us feel warm and fuzzy. Let's not kick people out of our lives too abruptly.