Success & Prosperity Blog

Dealing with Negative People

By Randy Gage in Critical Thinking, Success.

Last post we talked about habits, and which ones you may want to change, in order to change who you are.  We also acknowledged that our habits come from the thoughts we give precedence to.

Which leads us to the real issue…

If we change our thoughts, it’s a whole lot easier to change our habits.  If you don’t hang out in bars, you’re not so tempted to drink.  If you hang out in bookstores, you’re tempted to read.

If you hang out in pizza parlors, you’re much more tempted to eat unhealthy.  If you hang out in smoothie bars, you’re much more likely to eat well.  If you spend five hours a day watching TV, you are dramatically more likely to be focusing on thoughts of lack and limitation.  The places you reside and how you spend your time, go a long way toward determining your thoughts.

But not near as much as the people you hang around with…

Especially the ones you spend a lot of time with like your spouse, family, and co-workers.  So what do you do when they are negative, and trying to bring you down?   Please share any thoughts you have.  And as food for thought, watch this Prosperity TV episode I did on the subject again:


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44 thoughts on “Dealing with Negative People

  1. I, personally, think negative family is the hardest to deal with. Especially, when they live in the same city and you have children!I spent many years not wanting to be the “bitch” who kept the grandparents away from their kids.

    A few months ago, my husband and I wrote a letter to the toxic twins(his dad and step mom), we, as nicely as we could, said we’d tried to maintain a relationship with them for the past 8 years b/c of our kids and we’ve now reached the conclusion that the relationship is not in ours or our children’s best interest. We simply don’t wish to emulate their life style, and b/c of that any visitation with them would be extremely limited.

    I can’t tell you how freeing that was!

    Part of that freedom was realizing the dynamic of the relationship and part of it was owning the decision to change it!

    1. Thomas Edward Mrak says:

      I know the feeling.

      I have family that doesn’t value creativity or building something. Always eager to lecture about responsibility, when they clearly aren’t.

      “Do as I say, not as I do.”

      Eager talk about how important growth but they do not grow themselves, or encourage others, in fact quite the opposite.

      They think everyone either should depend on someone else, or you have to do it all yourself.

      Like some people, I learn best on my own or through mentors.

      I am not against formal education, but there is a lot of fear-mongering amongst various people and groups.

      “You’ll work at McDonald’s for the rest of your life if you don’t hurry up and go back to school.”

      With the cost of education rising, no guarantee of getting a “good job”, some corporations no longer treating customers and employees with dignity, and the fact that it goes against the way in which I learn best. (I was a horrible student), there are ways to create value by meeting that fine line between art and business.

      I am an electronic musician, and I am working on things so that I can teach other people some of my knowledge, and provide tools while I do the riskier things, such as build an audience for the music itself.

      I had to learn a lot of thing on my own, and much of the material is very technical, and most musicians just want to make something. Heck, there may even be people who are curious about how tracks are put together. I can “translate” much of these concepts into easier to understand language, and reduce the learning curve.

      There is also the creation of sounds for musicians and producers to use in their own projects, which is a business unto itself.

      There are also ways to make the technology for creation, marketing, and connecting music+people together.

      The possibilites are almost endless.

      I get tired of people calling me lazy and tell me I won’t succeed in life unless I do the safe thing.

      Your thoughts would be welcome.

      1. Randy Gage says:

        Safe is the new risky.


        1. Thomas Mrak says:

          Totally agree.

          The days of the “good job” are over.

    2. Southern Sweetie,
      Thank you for sharing. I to can relate and have spent the past twenty plus years learning how addictive negative thinking is.

      Like Randy said, I grew up with people who had a PH D in being a victim.

      My life didn’t change until I realized family doesn’t have to be biological and I started to cheerish my sanity.

      I appreciate your transparency

      Best wishes,
      Jeff Faldalen

  2. rene says:

    Negative people are negative because of fear. You can walk away from them or you can use them to confront your own fear. Because these people are our guides to expose our own fears.
    But don’t go looking for them; the universe drops them in your lap when you need them.

    1. I agree with you that the negative people we attract into our lives are the very people we need to mirror to us our own unacknowledged fears. They show us something about ourselves which the image of ourselves we have identified with does not want to see.
      We can walk walk away, and although the outer circumstances change nothing can change inwardly as stagnancy reigns.
      I found the way to `deal` with negative people was to start `dealing` with me first by starting to pull back my projections, which can be quite painful.
      I read somewhere that when you meet an individual who stirs you up and muddies the water you have been bathing in, you bow to him and say `Thank you master`.
      I have found that they do have a `gift`for me if I can accept and receive it.

  3. Carmen says:

    This one is ssssooo topical for me right now. I’ve gone from domestic bliss into a temporary, negative situation. I got rounded up in the kitchen this morning for a huge fight by a family member. They were spitting venom and incredibly aggressive. I’m still asking myself why I’ve invited this into my life again. The further I am away from them, the better my life seems to run. That’s a big clue that hasn’t gone unnoticed!

  4. DASGUPTA S says:

    The negative people are required to be avoided first if not very close in relation or to heart. Because they emits the ray which will definitely bring anybody down. Negative people are basically bad-finder, whatsoever is going on around they give negative comments. Basically the NEGATIVE people are not so successful in life and whoever around emits negative ray which is very dangerous. But it may be a thought process which can be undo with regular pep talks and discussion. But this can only happen if they realize that their thinking is negative. What I find that 99.9% negative people never accept they are (-)ve. Its an self assessment, if it can be done then only undo can be done. Same is the case with me, what I found an year back, that nothing right is happening in my life. Some change is required. I feel myself to be always of negative thoughts and bad find. Years and decades staying in negativity may lead to depression and invitation to lot many diseases. After realizing this, I opened myself for help. I had gone through lots of SELF HELP books and associated myself with successful people. The process is going on and I am quite confident that it will go on.

  5. Murali says:

    Very true. Negative thinking and being around negative people drags one down. As mentioned, even being with people who are positive ` long distance` via books and blogs is better than being surrounded by negativity. The ` something is better than nothing` mentality forces people to make wrong choices re friends and spouses. Being positive and happy with ones own company is the best way forward.

  6. Joe says:

    From my experience, the whole “lead by example” approach seems to work best for me. I’ve found that if I stick to my beliefs and live my life according to them, the negative people will either see the light or drift from my life. Being true to myself has cost me friendships, but it was better for me in the end. As for negative family, that’s harder to cut ties I would think. I just continue to live my life the way I believe in and hope I can passively help them see the light.

  7. Hi Randy,

    People who are consistent downers I either let go entirely or minimize my time with them. I am predominantly high energy, they are mostly low energy. Bad match.

    People who have their moments, or are struggling through difficult times yet keep a bright vision, I stay connected with these folks.

    We know on a deeper level who to remain friends with and who to let go. We know intuitively, but sometimes we let the ego call the shots, keeping us attached to people who pull us where we don’t want to go.

    Thanks for sharing Randy.


  8. Steve says:

    Great subject area Randy. I have listened extensively to interviews with you, James Ray, Dov Baron and Jack Canfield done by Barry & Heather Goss and each of you covered this area well and from varying perspectives.

    negative/limiting peoples views can make it much harder to achieve ones goals.

    Wish them well, hope for the best for them but mentally and physically you should DRIVE AROUND them.

    I have my own web based business and it has been all achieved while people from every walk of life told me how it couldn’t be done.

    I wish them all the best but have to follow my own road. In my opinion, people with negative/klimiting beliefs have tried and failed at things, perhaps not being persisten enough and/or sabotaging themselves.

    Then then place their filter on everyone elses achievements, especially if someone else is moving forward.

    1. Steve says:

      apologies for those typos I miss. sn

  9. Leo says:

    one of the most impacting messages and videos I’ve seen from you, not only because of the message, but because of the way you explain it to detail and how you treat it, made me realize some important things…

    Thanks for posting and sharing,

    Hope you realize also things and get to that billionare state-of-mind conciousness in a happy way… !!


  10. suzanne hng says:

    Hi Randy,

    You hit the nail on the head and I enjoyed this video so….. much.

    No boasting but my 4 children and late husband are tertiary educated whereas I had to sit for my Senior Cambridge Exams twice (not so cerebral( but am a go-getter!) and am enjoying it too.

    Someone said ‘ show me your friends and I will tell you what you are’. How true. Am learning now for it is better late than never. Nevermind, now I have long distance important influence like your goodself.

    Thanks vm

  11. Vishal says:

    Wow, I gotta say this blog post couldn’t come at a better time. I just got into an argument with boss over the fact that I had a conversation with the Software Developer at our work. I found out that my boss is paranoid about his job and will lash out if he feels threatened. He took me aside and just yelled at me and told me everything needs to go through him. I explained that I have been trying to go through him but nothing that I asked got done so I just found a work around. He threatened to fire me so I got upset and called him out on it. I know you might be thinking that in this economy but I work with a guy that destroys innovation. I actually explained to my two bosses about the power of Groupon. They responded by saying they weren’t interested. This was back in January. I just found out they are pursuing a deal with Groupon. I was upset that I wasn’t in the loop. Well enough the story telling but I greatly appreciate this post and video and it couldn’t come at a better time.

  12. Eve says:

    In Dante’s path, a journey through mental states of hell, purgatory and heaven, Dante is moving through hell with his guide. There is an angry man trying to pull him out of the canoe and into the river of fire. He does everything he can to get Dante to fight with him. It is very hard for both Dante and his guide to ignore this man and keep going. But his guide explains that fighting back will only keep him stuck in this state of hell.

    Another story that comes to mind is “What Dreams May Come” with Robin Williams. His wife is in hell because she can’t let go of the thought of loosing him, so focused that even when he comes to get her, she wont let go of her pain to embrace him. Instead of leaving her alone he chooses to stay with her in hell for eternity. This act causes both of them to be freed from hell.

    I think the second story is a collective myth we have in our minds even if we have never seen that movie. That if we love enough we can create a change right where are.

    Then there is another myth. One that says that you can be in heaven and shine a light down for those to be inspired. That no matter how much someone else loves for you, they can never create in you what you need to do to move yourself from one state of reality to another. The only thing we can do for each other is to do what is best for ourselves and inspire others to do the same rather than sacrifice ourselves so that we all stay in hell.

    I believe in both myths.

    Even in Dante’s path it shows both myths. Dante has a guide until he reaches the last stage right before heaven, when Beatrice looks up into a beautiful place and tells him that she can’t explain from here, he would just need to find his own way by gazing into the beauty.

    So I live both. But the question is not what is, the question is “what do I need to learn from my guide?”

    That working within is important but also important is learning external skills that allow you to increase external positive circumstances and decrease negative ones. And that ultimately it’s not about picking one or the other (inner work or outer skills) but utilizing both to create prosperity.

  13. Karim says:

    I eliminate negative friends and family from my life immediately. End of Story. I have seen many a talented family and friends never reach their full potential because they spent most of their time around negative and cynical people. At worst I have had some family members and friends spend time in jail because they spent their time around people who were not serious about living a prosperous, healthy, and happy life. To be fair they had a poverty consciousness that is why they attracted these negative people into their life.

    1. Thomas Edward Mrak says:

      I am sometimes afraid I may never live up to my potential because I grew up in a very negative household.

      Going to be 30 in September.

  14. John Lowery says:

    Thanks Randy! I personally will absolutely avoid or get rid of people from my circle who don’t make me feel good. I’d rather be alone than spend all my time with losers. Even got rid of my wife because she didn’t support my dreams or passions. To make it, you have to be willing to give up alot, and sometimes that means cutting off friends and family members.

  15. Mo says:

    I am so happy when the negative people go away without I have to leave them.And to be strong and “Talk well about the people, especially the ones not present” is a good rule to get rid of negativity around you.Negative people talk bad about everybody.Even you!And I have also noticed,that I can change a person a lot by being positive and just dont touch the negative subjects they try to start.And yes, as you start to respond to their negativity,the universe will send you more and more negative people.Soon everybody around you is that.Believe me,I know!Today I am lucky,because as soon as a person starts manipulation,projection,not answer to my positive stories or something like that,my heart say goodbye and I keep it intact.They are just not welcome in my heart.

  16. Mo says:

    …so I can see,who really wants me in their life or who just only want to have someone to put their negativity on…

  17. Glenn says:

    An excellent reminder of age old wisdom from a modern perspective. Well done, Randy.

  18. The in between stage sems the hardest part. Leaving the broke, uninspired old sphere of influence and connecting with and creating the relationships with the new SOI takes time. It’s a lonely place sometimes.

  19. Anna Perkins says:

    Dealing with negative people can be a real challenge. I just rather not be around anyone who is negative because the negativity can become contagious.

  20. Jacaré says:

    I´ve experienced it myself.
    When I got into a relationship with my girlfriend almost six years ago. My former friends all started hating and said stuff like “She just trys to pull you away from us!” or “Don´t you realize that she isn´t good for you!”
    The fact was just that my girlfriend didn´t like them because she noticed their negativity and bad influence on me. What my friends didn´t want to realize is that she was right. And that it wasn´t her pulling me away from them. But it was my own intention to get rid of them.

    At the moment I don´t have much contact with them anymore but we are still friends on Facebook. this is quite funny because I can see that they still haven´t changed and would probably still have a bad influence on me. They still waste their bodys smoking and drinking way too much. Going into the same clubs every weekend to “party” wich only means to drink even more. And they still aren´t capable of running any relationship that last longer then a few months.

    I´m thankful for my girlfreind waking me up from this abusive lifestyle. Only a few month after I quit contact with those friends the succes came in to my life.

  21. Lisa (DocT) says:

    Hi Randy

    I really enjoyed this video and blog post. It is so important today when you hear negativity everywhere you turn – the economy, weather, finding jobs, etc.

    You really need to stand guard at the door of your mind. It reminds me of a phrase – you can’t eliminate the negative but you can replace the negative with positive.



  22. Mary-Ellen says:

    I totally agree with Randy that enviornment is a huge prosperity buster if you are in spending the majority of your time around victims. Once you give up the victimhood role, you naturally move away from it. I just moved to Southport and I already notice why there are so many prosperous people here. It is so hard to let go of people that you love or like, when they are bringing you down, but in my opinion, if you don’t make at least a conscious effort to limit your time with them, you won’t make the progress to prosperity an easy one for yourself.

  23. Sylvia says:

    Great video Randy! I totally agree with you and love how you put this so simply. I’m in a transition now and struggling to find the others I jive with on that level as I don’t really hang out with hardly anybody anymore. But I’d rather be alone than be around those with victim consciousness! I do have a few friends online that are supportive and it’s challenging when dealing with family, but it’s worth it for your piece of mind and your future.

  24. When somebody is complaining about anything to me, I allways keep in mind: am I being used as a dustbin right now? Saying ‘stop’ to the one who feels like complaining helps great!

  25. Peter Fuller says:

    In some situations when someone is being negative I just ask them questions, predominately “why” questions.

    I try to get them to be rational about what they are saying.

  26. Randy, perfect timing!! I am ready for the next level and do use mentors through books, videos, and CDs. My car is a rolling university of positive people. What I have learned is to not engage in conversation of negativity: if in a group I excuse myself; if one on one I ask them to stop, should they continue I excuse myself; if it is a loved one I do not engage in the drama (I mean the new reaction they are not used to from me). Randy my questions to you are: since breaking the cycle with my top producing media mentors of their industries, how do I get to the next level of mentors?

  27. Anon says:

    Hey Randy- That is my favorite episode of prosperity T.V. 😉

  28. suzanne hng says:

    Hi Randy,

    I fished this out so please allow me to share:- Here goes:-
    ‘Bridging the Gap’ by General Colin Powell, former Secretary of State to then President George W Busch:-
    The less you associate with some people, the more your life will improve. Any time you tolerate mediocrity in others, it increases your mediocrity. An important attribute in successful people is their impatience with NEGATIVE THINKING and NEGATIVE ACTING people. As you grow, your associates will change. Some of your friends will not want you to go on. They will want you to stay where they are. Friends that do not help you climb will want you to crawl. Your friends will stretch your vision or choke your dream. Those that don’t increase you will eventually decrease you.

    Never receive counsel from unproductive people, never discuss your problems with someone incapable of contributing to the solution, because those who never succeed themselves are always first to tell you how. Not everyone has a right to speak into your life. You are certain to get the worst of the bargain when you exchange ideas with the wrong person. Don’t follow anyone who’s not going anywhere.
    With some people you spend an evening, with others you invest it. Wise is the person who fortifies his life with the right friendships. If you run with wolves, you will learn how to howl. But, if you associatge with eagles, you will learn how to soar to great heights.
    ‘A mirror reflects a man’s face, but what he is really like is shown by the kind of friends he chooses’

    The simple but true fact of life is that you become like those with whom you closely associate – for the good and the bad….”

    Randy, now I know you are living out your passion because of what you shared in you video – for the good…. Enjoy!

    Thanks again.

  29. Paul Hunter Shippey says:

    I got a lot out of this video-it made me aware that IF I want to be rich, I NEED TO CHANGE & PURGE NEGATIVE PEOPLE OUT OF MY LIFE!!! Thank you, Randy, for opening my eyes to this!

  30. rita says:

    Hey Randy, it´s a good and pretty important topic we also discussed this week with the Morning Coach J.B. Glossinger! I figured, there´s something “matching” the whole process of how to deal with them and why they become negative. After lots of thinking of why people ARE or ACT SO negative sometimes or especially in some situations, compared to me, here´s a main reason: they are stuck in their location. They have family, friends and their job in one particular place. Means: they can´t move and they want to stay there. When permanently defending their home & area, they ssem to turn nagative. As for me, e.g., I always did and still think of leaving my country. None of my friends will do that. Some came into this country where I live so they want to stay. Many don´t speak another language. So their circle of movement is small and closed. I keep my opportunity circle open! And this state of mind, to be open to leave at any time, keeps me very positive. Actually, so positive that I don´t have the strong urge to leave, well, right now more than ever, but not in the past. One can compare it with the “group dynamics” people from Human Resources deal with: a closed circle of a group/team, as you learned yourself in life, only “works” with the same language, vocabulary, topics, opinions. As soon as the circle cracks open and a new one comes in or someone leaves, the dynamic changes. But then one has to be willing and ABLE to leave. So change has to do with moving, in the mind or literally physically, but only both offers a better result in life!! Very profound, I love it.

  31. Polux Lopez says:

    No words… just one: AMAZING! The best show ever…

    Thanks, Randy!

  32. Randy,
    Great article and video. Its like the saying goes “birds of a feather flock together”
    Or the story about you can put a frog into boiling water it will jump out, but if you put it in the water and turn up the heat you will cook it
    We really don’t know how much our environment is effecting us, until we start to evaluate it.
    I say this to my mentoring clients, “every break thru is proceeded by being broken” We can learn a lot from these moments if we ask what am I suppose to be learning from this, rather then crying why is this happening to me.

    Just my experience during my 20 years of self development

    Love your stuff and wishing you a billionaire,
    Jeff Faldalen

    PS I will be there someday too


    I believe that things are brought before you in life when you are at a crossroads or most in need of change in order to expand yourself as human beings… not everyone recognizes this… and some choose to ignore it… but if you understand and learn to accept them as gifts for your development it can be momentous. Reading and listening to your videos on this blog today has been awe inspiring and I thank you wholeheartedly. I will endeavour to put into action what I have learnt and I am certainly putting you in my ‘mastermind group’!

  34. mom says:

    Our son’s wife is so terrible. No matter what we did, we were wrong. She has called me and my daughters; psycho, bipolar, and Bi#&@. Now, can you tell me, is that how you treat family? We don’t get to see the grand kids either, nor our son, and we live in the same small town. She also bad mouths us on face book. When our kids were young, we always told them if they didn’t have anything nice to say, then don’t say anything at all. Oh, and she makes claims that our son doesn’t love me, and never felt any love what so ever from me. This isn’t some young whippersnapper she is almost 40. The things she has said to us, about us and to their children, is so terrible, you wouldn’t believe it. Why is she like this? I really think it is a MENTAL CONDITION.

  35. Paula Herman says:

    Needed this today………..thank you RG !!   You ROCK !!


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