It seems like lately some of us have turned complaining and whining into a favorite pastime. In this dreary economic climate, we’ve all been subjected to the horror stories about how a friend’s cousin lost her 401K or how the guy down the street is in foreclosure. In networking, it’s no different. You most likely have firsthand experience with a dour individual complaining about shrinking sales, their precarious position in the company, and their ongoing bad luck.
Sure, we’re all facing adversity, but hearing ongoing negativity is not productive and downright irritating. Are you guilty of being a downer? Many of us are, but it’s not a smart or productive strategy if you’re going to utilize networking to help you through these undeniably choppy times. Here are just a few reminders to keep you on a positive track:
Positivity Begets More Positivity
When asked how you’re doing, are you keeping it upbeat? Or, are you unloading tales of despair on everyone around you? By focusing on the negatives, you’re clearly communicating that you’re not worth anyone’s networking time. Nobody wants to hop aboard a sinking ship of failure. However, if you’re sharing stories of achievement, growth, and positivity, you’ll find that people are naturally drawn to you and what you’re saying.
Find the Silver Lining
Times are tough, but even the darkest cloud has a silver lining. Now is the time to evaluate what is good in your business and in your life. Generously share these positives with your networking contacts. You may help inspire others to do the same!
Take Constructive Action
Are you unhappy about your current situation? Obviously, doing nothing and complaining about it isn’t going to help. Make a plan and implement it. The sooner you start taking action, the sooner your situation will improve.
Give to Others
It can be easy to slip into the mindset of thinking only about your needs when times are tough. However, the reality is that there are many, many people who are in more challenging situations. Now is the time to help them out. Give your time, give referrals, and give hope to people who are in difficulty. Your generosity will be appreciated, and you’ll be rewarded with a more positive outlook on your own situation.
Maintain Your Sense of Humor
Resolve to stay lighthearted through adversity. People want to be around those who have a good sense of humor. Laughter is truly the universal language, and everyone enjoys a funny story or joke.
The bottom line is that being a somber downer gives off an air of negativity and failure to those around you. You are not going to attract success or find new opportunities with a bad attitude. Hang in there, keep it light, positive, and have a good laugh.