Handling Negativity

“Eating right and exercising don’t make you better than anyone else. They only make you a better you.”  -Shelby Starnes (My nutrition coach)

Whether you are at the start of your path to personal improvement through fitness and nutrition, or you are already well traveled along that road, it is fair to say that the support of those around you will play an important role in your journey.  You will be faced with an array of reactions to the choices you make as you embark on your lifestyle change.  These reactions will come from a wide variety of people, and from an even wider variety of emotions. They will range from unconditionally supportive to downright angry, and every conceivable variation in between.  How you react in return, and how you choose to be affected by these emotions will play a vital role in the success you have of achieving your goals.

For those who react in a positive way, the support they give will be priceless.  It cannot be stated enough how valuable positive support is. Unfortunately it will most likely be the less common of the two halves of the emotional spectrum that you will come in contact with.

As you begin to be faced with negativity, rather than simply dismiss it, it is important to understand where it stems from.  While that is going to be based on the individual, it seems that the foundation of most negativity is rooted in the fear of being judged.  As you make positive changes in your life, others begin to feel as if the changes you are making are giving you a sense of entitlement to judge the choices they make (or fail to make): one person’s growth reveals another person’s stagnation.   In defense they choose to try to knock you down before you can judge them. It is a very understandable response, and one that most of us are guilty of, myself included, to one degree or another at one time in our lives.

As you encounter different forms of negativity here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Do not succumb to peer pressure. Maintain faith in the decisions and choices that you know are right for you.
  • If the negativity is coming from a person whose opinion matters to you, try to consider if there is a deeper rooted source that is driving this emotion, such as a their own fear of being judged.
  • By bettering your life, you should not be striving to put yourself in a position to look down on others, you should be striving to be better than you.
  • If they truly do not want the best for you, then they can go fuck themselves. Their opinions don’t matter.

-Cyrus

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