Who is this real negative Nancy anyways?
To some she is the gal who is always complaining about something. She makes it all about her all the time too. We want to be her friend, because there is a lot of cool things about her we relate on, but it often feels like a 1-way street. She certainly is not there when you need her. You always have to be the one to reach out and try to make plans only to be greeted by a litany of things that are going on in her life that while she’d love to get together she is just sooo busy. This is of course after she just spent the last 45 minutes telling you about the latest slew of problems and stress she has going on in her life and how nothing is ever going right for her.
It’s annoying as hell.
Then there is the other type of Negative Nancy.
She dresses in black regularly and seems like this super cool wish we could be like her image of a badass. I envision her in black thigh-high boots, mini and rockstar hair that emits cool and bad at the same time. She may not say much but when she does it’s definitely attention grabbing material.
While I give her this super cool image, she’s not the one you go knocking on the door to ask to babysit your kids or join a girl’s night to the local Applebee’s. No. Trust me she already knows you’re going out with the girls and she’s going to be right there watching from the corner. Waiting. She is truly wicked. So much so the regular negative Nancy seems like kittens and rainbows in comparison.
She lives inside our own head and is truly wicked. So much so the regular negative Nancy seems like kittens and rainbows.
Each of us has a version of this darker Evil Negative Nancy. She is the true villain. She has the voice in our head that says the really nasty, mean things about us, other people, our spouse, and even the dog. We wouldn’t dare say any of it out loud but we still think it because she tell us to.
It is almost like we are our own Cruella with two sides.
Trouble is that sometimes our Cruella Negative Nancy ends up rewiring our brain and emotions to the point we can no longer tell she is dominating us inside and out. We swim in her negativity to the point we think it is a warm bath that is just how things are. You know the adulting that sucks, demanding bosses that never get off your back, traffic that doesn’t move fast enough making you late for pick up. It’s the voice that tells you to push forward and make your own way in the world because you can depend on no one.
How Negative Nancy Takes Over Our Mind
Bad things will happen in life. There will be hard times and periods where nothing goes right. We can get frustrated, stressed, overwhelmed, beaten down and tired from these experiences. It all wears on our emotions and is completely understandable too. Long term challenges like this can also shape how we see the world and the people in it.
It is when we linger in these feelings of thinking nothing can go right for us or that the world is truly jaded and unfair that we can see this dark negativity consume us. Here’s how that plays out:
At first it’s something small. We didn’t get chosen or were excluded and our feelings were hurt. We think we’ve worked through it, get over it and move on. We learn that sometimes people don’t get invited or included and sometimes that person is us.
But it happens time and again.
We work harder to fit in, make friends, do better. The times we don’t succeed we develop a voice in our head that beats us up for not knowing or doing better.
We have the judgy comments about how an outfit doesn’t fit us right and we cannot find something we look good in. We pick on ourselves for not doing better on something, not being thinner or our hair not being perfect. We compare ourselves to others or what we see on TV or in the stores for what everyone is wearing, how they’re doing their hair and want to fit in.
We hear our mother’s voice in our head about not doing what we should be doing in life. Why we are not in a good relationship, married, with a good job at this point. We underplay our own successes and accomplishments as not good enough.
Then we start thinking and saying things in our head about what’s happening around us. Our house isn’t big enough, our car too old.
Lastly, we pick on our relationships. Our children not being well-behaved, our spouse not doing all that they should. Our friends not being like we think we should have, not filling the need we need.
It builds up to the point we start to see every little thing as wrong, insufficient, not good enough, not fulfilling and negative. We wallow in the negative. Every thought we have is negative. Even when we think we are saying something good, there is a sarcastic twist underlying the negative.
We can all at times see things as not so glamourous in our life but it is when we continually pick on ourselves in this way that things can become problematic.
How to Know if is you being the Negative One
After you have swam in the negative pool for a while you may not realize you are the one who is always negative. Your view can be distorted and what you thought were doing is actually something different.
There will be physical signs you can use to determine if Negative Nancy is holding you hostage.
Changes in appetite
How you really know if it is you though is to be honest with yourself.
Are you processing your emotions, especially the ones that hurt or letting them fester?
Do you let people know they hurt your feelings, talk out conflict or avoid these things?
Are you missing out on invitations? Being excluded from things?
Do you find it easy to make new friends or get involved in activities involving new people?
Do you wait until someone reaches out to you or do you initiate contact first?
What is the first thing you think of when you see your friends? Is it negative?
When you need something does someone come help?
While it is normal to have the occasional negative thought, letting them be our mainstream internal commentary can hurt us. As you can see from the short lists above, we can experience lower physical energy, darker moods, and even have body pain. Our minds and emotions move to a self-preservation space using negativity to try to protect us against future hurt we have come to expect. Whether that risk is true or not the negativity we feel can stem from past experiences or just our assumption about what might happen.
Healing from long term negativity
Overcoming negativity in our own minds takes time. It is like overcoming any other illness or healing we need to have in our body. I believe this is where natural health excels though because not only do we heal in body but also mind and spirit as well. Here are my best tips for healing on this journey and breaking up with the evil negative Nancy in your head once and for all.
Consider professional help. Sometimes there are legitimate reasons we are negative. A lot of trauma, stress, bad experiences and more can create the negative space. It is ok to get help. Whether that is talk therapy, changing your diet, friends or situation. Getting guidance from professionals is a good way to make sure old negativity doesn’t follow you.
Journal. Writing thoughts to paper is key in identifying where you are negative. Express your truest feelings, thoughts, perspectives and opinions line by line. Seeing it in actual words can help you assess your level of negativity and where work needs to begin. I also recommend journaling through the entire journey so you can see the battles won and space made from negative Nancy’s eviction.
Move your body. Changing your physical view, routine, pattern and habits can significantly influence our thoughts and moods. Getting into a new physical space throws negativity for a loop. Use that opportunity to become curious, open to new experiences and reframe your thoughts.
Assess your relationships. Sometimes negativity is bred from common negativity in our relationships. It feeds off what exists until it consumes us all. If you have negativity in your relationships, work to change the communications to have more positive interactions. If this cannot be done, then it may also be helpful to set some boundaries.
Is it your friends? This is tough but sometimes it is the company we keep. We want to fit in but sometimes we’re trying too hard or its just not for us. That’s ok. Finding the right circle of friends takes time and sometimes we need to move on from other relationships to make that happen.
Is it your diet? Food greatly impacts our thought processes and even our energy levels. If you’re filling up on processed foods, diet sodas and even harsh diets it can impact our thoughts. Our brains need healthy fats and our entire body needs nutritious foods.
Take an inventory with yourself and update it regularly. Choose a few things you can adopt now and work to include other healthy changes as you progress. If it doesn’t feel right or you find yourself slipping back into negative habits and patterns, reset.
Negativity is a situation that can long term impact our health. We may not always recognize it either. This is where developing healthy relationships can be of help to you. Not only do they build positivity around you but they can offer you that insight into when there is negativity popping up.
Natural support for negativity
When it comes to changing your lifestyle to be more healthy, it helps to work with a natural health professional. They can help you identify vitamin deficiencies, dietary support and a wellness framework for your body-mind-spirit. Seeing you as a whole person is a great perspective to helping you see things more optimistically.
In making changes to your lifestyle from negativity, I recommend diet, supplementation and exercise. Even little movement such as walking improves our lymphatic system function and flushes out toxins. Negativity is a toxin and when it festers we find other body slow downs like low energy, depression, illness and even disease. Having the support to build health from the inside out not only improves your physical body but overall mental outlook as well.
How to work with me
I work with clients across the world to help them with natural health questions and structure to feel their best. Using only natural health techniques we identify root causes to help you build a plan personalized to your needs.
To schedule time with me, please visit dragonspitapothecary.com/book-online