Who you share your time with is one of those things you cannot take for granted, but, so many people do. I was speaking with a friend last week and we were talking about her recent trip overseas. While she was there she stumbled upon a book and when she opened up to the middle of the book she fell right on the start of the chapter entitled “Toxic People”. Think about the word toxic for a minute. Most dictionary definitions say it means “capable of causing injury or death”. Well toxic people have the same effect. If you spend your time with people who are negative, down on themselves, unhappy, out of hope and faith, trust me when I say it won’t be long until you start feeling the same way. And a person harbouring these kinds of thoughts and feelings on a daily basis is also the same person who is always sick. Don’t hang with them!
That same friend returned home from her trip and had individual conversations with all the “friends” whom she realized were toxic in her life. She told them (with kindness) that the way they behaved, the things they said etc. no longer were a match for her lifestyle and/or the way she wanted to spend her time. Once she’d made her rounds it was like she was a boa constrictor shedding her layer of old skin, she felt free, empowered and excited about what lay ahead. She was no longer going to be drained of her precious energy listening to the gripes, complaints and overall negative attitude of her so called friends.
Ok, so what do you do if you think you have toxic people in your life?
Step 1 – Figure out who you spend your time with. Take this week to make an inventory of who gets your time? Write down all the people you spend time with at home, at work, at leisure activities, on the phone, family, friends, colleagues etc.
Step 2 – Go through the list, at the end of the week, and put a (+) sign beside those who give you life, positive energy, support and nurturing and a (-) sign beside those who are negative, judgmental, gossipers or drain you of your energy.
Step 3 – STOP spending time with anyone that you put a (-) beside. If you think this is impossible, maybe you live with a (-), as Bob Proctor always told me “don’t go as often and don’t stay as long”. If you can’t eliminate this person from your precious 24 hour days, then limit the amount of time you spend with them.
Step 4 – Make a list of 30 people you know, or know of, who seem to have many of the things you desire for your life. Maybe it’s a successful entrepreneur or business person, maybe someone who is in excellent physical shape, maybe someone who always seems to be in a good mood and looking at the positive side of life, all the people who have a little something that you would want more of.
Step 5 – Every morning call one of the people on your list of 30 and make an appointment for coffee, lunch, a walk…
Step 6 – After you’ve met with them confirm that they are a (+) and keep in regular contact with them.
Your time is precious, who you spend it with makes all the difference. Make your life a (+) everyday by surrounding yourself with (+) people.
Good luck, I look forward to your comments.