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  1. #1
    Senior Member swordpath's Avatar
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    Default How do you reverse negativity, cynicism, being critical?

    Is there anything other than "focusing on the good" that one can do? Is it a one way path once it begins? It's not so much about being outwardly critical or negative per se, but the tendency is to filter everything in life through this microscope that's always looking for the "bad".

  2. #2
    Dreaming the life onemoretime's Avatar
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    Have faith. Find something or someone to believe in, and then hold to it, in spite of the doubts. Your friends are a good place to start

  3. #3
    morose bourgeoisie
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    I have trouble with this too. Sometimes I say, over and over, in my head: 'stay open'. I try to treat others with respect, even if they act like they don't deserve it. If people feel respected, they open up; if they do not, they won't, and may never. This gives you control, even if it seems somewhat self-negating at first. Of course, it's hard to maintain...

  4. #4
    likes this gromit's Avatar
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    Negativity and cynicism have to do with unrealistic standards and nit-picking instead of seeing a bigger picture that could be interpreted more positively (or at least acknowledging how or why things do not live up to your expectations and allowing more leniency and forgiveness in self and others).
    Your kisses, sweeter than honey. But guess what, so is my money.

  5. #5
    Post Human Post Qlip's Avatar
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    I've noticed that people I have known for years have changed significantly, they've seemed to accumulated bitterness and developed a thick defensive shell. I'm unsure if this is just how people of certain types tend to develop, maybe it's out of their hands.. just a function of their experiences. I have a hard time believing somebody can just will themselves to stop being cynical without changing things other than thoughts.

    I think the best shot for a positive outlook is to work to get yourself in a positive place where you can feel like you are capable of achieving satisfaction. Your outlook will change to match.

  6. #6
    likes this gromit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Qlip View Post
    I've noticed that people I have known for years have changed significantly, they've seemed to accumulated bitterness and developed a thick defensive shell. I'm unsure if this is just how people of certain types tend to develop, maybe it's out of their hands.. just a function of their experiences. I have a hard time believing somebody can just will themselves to stop being cynical without changing things other than thoughts.

    I think the best shot for a positive outlook is to work to get yourself in a positive place where you can feel like you are capable of achieving satisfaction. Your outlook will change to match.
    Yeah true, also surrounding yourself with positive people rather than negative people.

    Quote Originally Posted by gromit View Post
    Negativity and cynicism have to do with unrealistic standards and nit-picking instead of seeing a bigger picture that could be interpreted more positively (or at least acknowledging how or why things do not live up to your expectations and allowing more leniency and forgiveness in self and others).
    To continue on this line of thinking and tie it into @Qlips thoughts... my negativity, when it occurs, usually turns inward, I am critical and unrealistic about myself, holding myself to kind of ridiculous standards at times, particularly when I'm down about something. I even sometimes let it impact how I perceive my relationships with other people. But getting myself to a place where I'm generally satisfied, doing things I find worthwhile and enjoyable, like Qlip suggests, and developing a bit of forgiveness for when I (or circumstances) don't quite measure up have really made a difference to me.
    Your kisses, sweeter than honey. But guess what, so is my money.

  7. #7
    Senior Member UniqueMixture's Avatar
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    I agree with everything said here, but I would add having an existential viewpoint that is respectful of yourself and others. Also, when people, things, and situations feel negative to you realize several things:

    1) this experience is just an experience
    2) experiences are neither good or bad, it is what they imply about reality that makes us feel negative
    3) Negative situations have a way of illuminating you values and are often opportunies in diguise/opportunities for growth

    I allso believe having gratitude is key. As well as boundaries to respect your self esteem.
    For all that we have done, as a civilization, as individuals, the universe is not stable, and nor is any single thing within it. Stars consume themselves, the universe itself rushes apart, and we ourselves are composed of matter in constant flux. Colonies of cells in temporary alliance, replicating and decaying and housed within, an incandescent cloud of electrical impulses. This is reality, this is self knowledge, and the perception of it will, of course, make you dizzy.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Qlip View Post
    I've noticed that people I have known for years have changed significantly, they've seemed to accumulated bitterness and developed a thick defensive shell. I'm unsure if this is just how people of certain types tend to develop, maybe it's out of their hands.. just a function of their experiences. I have a hard time believing somebody can just will themselves to stop being cynical without changing things other than thoughts.

    I think the best shot for a positive outlook is to work to get yourself in a positive place where you can feel like you are capable of achieving satisfaction. Your outlook will change to match.
    I've noticed that too about myself from time to time. I try to consciously "hit reset" when I notice it.

    Although to be honest it is something which, for me at least, has to accumulate because naturally I'm not quite like that and after a good time out, nice vacation or something of that sort generally I'll not be that way so I dont experience it as being irreversable or an outgrowth of personality type or experience. Awareness is key though.

  9. #9

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    I probably only know one person who is consistently positive about everyone and everything, so far as I'm able to discern its a pretty conscious thing for him, if he ever says anything negative its usually in humour and to highlight a greater positive or something like that. I'm sure it has to take a lot of work.

  10. #10

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    I was just reading this before I logged in here.

    The Snarky Voice in Your Head Is Killing Your Productivity; Here’s How to Stop It

    Some amount of cynicism and questioning is good, I think. Then there is acceptance that everyone and everything is flawed and love regardless. Awareness I guess...

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