Don’t Be a Debbie Downer

Have you ever had an experience where one person completely changed the mood in a meeting (either negatively or positively)? Do you know someone who’s described as “being able to light up a room”? Do you have a friend who’s able to pull you out of your most destitute moment by always saying the right thing? Maybe you have a co-worker or client who’s always looking at challenges as insurmountable obstacles?

There’s an art to being the person who can flip the energy in an interaction. Never underestimate the power of keeping your cool when shit hits the fan. Don’t think that for a minute that one person’s negative vibes don’t affect the whole.

When you’re connecting with a person, or people, you always have the opportunity to influence the energy in the interaction. When you’re truly connecting, you can sense the energy and flip it on a dime (in the case of negativity) or be sure to not let the high disappear when things are going well.

Regardless of the situation, whether it’s going well or not, it all starts with you.

How you enter a situation will make a difference for everyone involved, including yourself. At the most basic level, we’re all bundles of energy (scientific fact, folks). So why not embrace that and accept your role in creating good or bad energy in everything you do?

I’m not for a moment suggesting that you can convince your grumpy boss or partner to all of a sudden understand the error of their ways and change miraculously overnight but you can start with you and how you react to them. More often than not, someone who brings negativity to a situation is looking for a reaction. They want to get under your skin or at the very least, ruffle your feathers.

Think of someone who’s always being negative, someone who’s always dragging you down. What if you reacted differently the next time this person was trying to put a damper on your day? What if you kept your cool instead of flying off the handle next time? What if you didn’t let their negativity phase you because you knew that would be a waste of your precious energy?

What if you entered a meeting or pitch with your head held high and felt like you were going to make a real difference? What if, instead of encouraging gossip, you decided to switch the topic the next time someone was trying to engage you in a, “you’ll never guess what so-and-so did the other day” kind of conversation. What if you answered the phone with a smile the next time someone you knew was calling you for help with something for the fifth time that day?

It’s sounds cliche but life really is too short to do stuff you don’t love and to not enjoy your interactions with others. Nobody likes a Debbie Downer and I can guarantee you that Debbie is never happy. And that sucks.


  • Corinne K.
    February 5, 2014 at 11:56 am

    Thanks Alyn! I appreciate the feedback!

  • Alyn Glazerman
    February 2, 2014 at 8:01 pm

    Well written article – Pleasure to read this… Keep it up Corinne K! Looking forward to your next post.

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