Negativity And The Path To Happiness: Why Success Is A Breeding Zone For Negativity

Negativity And The Path To Happiness: Why Success Is A Breeding Zone For Negativity

An explanation as to why people get mean when you begin to succeed.
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There comes a point in time when we as individuals yearn to become more than what we are. We daydream of these rich lands with money raining from the sky, a big old house to call home, and our passion coming to fruition. These “rich lands” are fertilized by the very things that bring us joy, our individual likes and loves. The “money raining from the sky” is what will allow us to live comfortably without continuous worry. Our passion, what we put our heart and soul into, what we dedicate our lives to, that is what we all dream of bringing us prosperity and success. We desperately want out passions to be the sole cause of our success so that way we can thrive in happiness. For a lot of people, happiness is at the center of their day dreams and goals for their life. Without happiness, without laughter, without joy, without smiling, and without a few good people by your side there is no point. When positivity is not flourishing alongside you, there is absolutely no point in striving, sacrificing, or dedicating everything you have to a venture.

One would think that this road to success is paved with golden bricks of happiness and that the footprints of our golden friends would show up by our side. This is not the case though, in fact, once we reach for success and begin to put in the work, we hear snide remarks, see disgusted looks, are subjected to curt responses, and worst of all the gold on our “friends” begins to rust away rapidly; leaving behind remnants of their shimmer and shine on the floor only to be blown away by the wind.

But why? Why does this happen? Why is it that our closest and truest friends unleash this negativity on us when we begin to see successful results in ourselves? Why is it that negativity manifests itself the most in the places that we always felt positivity?

These are loaded questions with various explanations. My opinion is probably the one that is most commonly shared by people. My afterthoughts, however, may be relatively new to people.

First of all, success is a long and sometimes painful process. A lot of us go on this journey without knowing how people will react along the way, how attitudes can change, how we meet new people, and just how pivotal of a step it is in our lives. We often underestimate the journey along the way, thinking it will not change anything, or anyone, or even affect our lives. We always seem to think that the actual moment of receiving that success is what changes our world. This is not the case. You see, what happens is that the journey to success is paved with nothing but lessons that are meant to prepare us for what will be coming up. These lessons vary from person to person, it is all based on what we have yet to learn. This happens though, because before we can really experience this success we have to go through events that will ensure our appreciation and gratitude for that success.

If we find success without bringing along appreciation, then what is the point? We’d simply take it for granted and that is not the point of success and happiness. We can not obtain success and happiness without enduring negativity, in fact, that is why negativity exists. Negativity is alive and breathing because it has a purpose, it’s purpose is to condition us for the all good that is about to come in our lives. Negativity has to make room inside of us, this is often referred to as a “void” or a “gap” for some time.

This is what we tend to try to fill up, yet no matter how much effort we put in, we never seem to be able to fill this void. The void is like an abyss: everything we fill it with becomes unimportant, it frightens us when we begin to look in, and sometimes we become lost in it. We try to fill this gap the best we can, but never really do until we decide to go on our journey of happiness.

This is where the journey comes in, the journey to happiness. Happiness is an interesting little thing, to achieve full happiness within ourselves requires a dedication to ourselves. Jack Kerouac once said,

“So therefore I dedicate myself to myself, to my art, my sleep, my dreams, my labors, my suffrances, my loneliness, my unique madness, my endless absorption and hunger because I cannot dedicate myself to any fellow being.”

This quote sums up a lot more than what one would think. It implies that when we focus on others, when we care about what others say, when our lives revolve around people, we cannot be happy. I take this quote a step further and argue the point that we are enablers of negativity if we choose to practice the previously stated things. If we begin to dedicate ourselves to our dreams and passions we will be truly happy, the more we fight that urge to take that first step toward our dreams, the more we oppress ourselves and breed negativity inside of us, a.k.a internal negativity. Once we begin to step forth, toward that dream, we can begin on the road to happiness.

So, we begin our trek, how does that affect the people around us? Aren’t our friends going to remain the same? Here is what happens once you become happy. Some people around you may seem nonchalant toward you. Some may seem more stand-offish. Some may be blunt and be outright rude toward you. Very few will become genuinely happy and excited for you. This will create external negativity. External Negativity is when the negativity is bred outside of yourself, it is due to others attitudes and is not directly caused by you. Let me reiterate, you are not the cause of their negativity, it is due to their own flourishing internal negativity. Their internal negativity is caused by their insecurities finally gaining strength. They will gain strength when the individual witnesses another person beginning to grasp something that they do not have. Most of the time, it is genuine happiness.

If you’ve ever noticed anyone in school or the workplace constantly being talked about despite their happy disposition and kindness, this is the reason. Some people breed internal negativity due to someone else’s positivity simply because they cannot understand how to attain it. They don’t understand why it isn't happening to them and why the other person gets to experience it, this in turn inflates one's insecurities. Once insecurities inflate, egos become more apt to bruise. They bruise because of the common defense mechanism of super-inflating the ego when feeling weak. Of course this has only one outcome: it pops like a balloon. The individual will have outbursts of negativity, lash out, and explode at the other individual who is on the journey. To the individual on the journey it seems completely out of character and shocking. We can’t understand what the actual issue is and so we take these remarks, looks, negative treatment to heart. This makes us want to give up and throw in the towel. If we don’t have our “friends” then why go on?

Well, here’s what happens afterward. When we lose people in our lives, we tend to meet new people we never thought we’d get along with. Generally we meet these people in the overlap period. This is referring to when your current friend(s) are about to exit your life and shortly before they do, you meet the new people (new friends) who will have a significant impact on you. These people tend to show you things you always needed to learn about whatever issues you always seemed to struggle with. Whether it be a point of view, a much needed reality check, or just a good old life lesson about the how the social sphere of human beings works. Eventually, these people surround you more and more; they show you a better, more genuine, and stronger connection than the previous people or person that was in your life ever could. This strength only aids you in your journey to happiness, allowing you to acquire a new found internal strength through the lessons you have been able to learn.

This leads to the second part of why people try to bring you down, or seem more negative than before toward you. With your new found knowledge comes wisdom and personal growth. In short: Maturity. You enter the next phase in your journey where you are now completely focused on your dreams and yourself. Let me interject myself here and assert that this does not mean you are selfish at all. This is no way means you are a self-centered individual. There is no shame in down-sizing your circle of friends, focusing more on your goals, and becoming a better person. This phase in your journey to happiness is where you find who you really are, and most importantly who you want to be. In this phase, you learn about what is really important to you, who makes you happy and why, and your communication style changes. Maturity plays a big factor in your happiness because as soon as you understand there is more to life than petty issues, and people’s overall tendency to be petty in general, you really don’t care about the small things. You are now more focused on what really matters. This is a huge reason why people tend to be mean to you on your journey: you don’t give into their drama baits. Doing this sends a clear message to the other party that you have risen above being hurt by non-essential things and in fact used their negativity to drive you to succeed.

One of the last things I’d like to point out here is that conversion. The conversion of someone’s negativity into your own fuel for success. A lot of people sometimes don’t know what to do with all of these negative remarks. A lot of people shut down, go somewhere else, or give up on their journey. What they need to know is the conversion method. It is absolutely essential to your success on your journey because not only is it redirecting your line of thinking and emotions, but it is changing that external negativity into positivity. It reduces your stress, anxiety, and prohibits you from breeding your own internal negativity.

Now that you’ve done this, you have reached your success! Whether it be getting a new PR in the gym, scoring that new job you wanted, writing that book you’ve been dreaming of, buying that house with a white picket fence, or whatever your heart desires. This journey has led you through ups, downs, losses, and gains, but you have come out as the person you always wanted to be who is wiser, stronger, and happier. By now, the people who were rude to you shouldn’t be on your radar because you now know how to fill your life with positivity, instead of negativity.

This is the journey of happiness and success, it is not paved with gold, but as you go on your trek, you find diamonds now pave your road. In their reflection you see a smile that touches your eyes and you think, “wow...this is happiness”.

Cover Image Credit: tumblr

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Your Wait time At Theme Parks Is Not Unfair, You're Just Impatient

Your perceived wait time is always going to be longer than your actual wait time if you can't take a minute to focus on something other than yourself.

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Toy Story Land at Disney's Hollywood Studios "unboxed" on June 30, 2018. My friend and I decided to brave the crowds on opening day. We got to the park around 7 AM only to find out that the park opened around 6 AM. Upon some more scrolling through multiple Disney Annual Passholder Facebook groups, we discovered that people were waiting outside the park as early as 1 AM.

We knew we'd be waiting in line for the bulk of the Toy Story Land unboxing day. There were four main lines in the new land: the line to enter the land; the line for Slinky Dog Dash, the new roller coaster; the line for Alien Spinning Saucers, the easier of the new rides in the land; Toy Story Mania, the (now old news) arcade-type ride; and the new quick-service restaurant, Woody's Lunchbox (complete with grilled cheese and "grown-up drinks").

Because we were so early, we did not have to wait in line to get into the land. We decided to ride Alien Spinning Saucers first. The posted wait time was 150 minutes, but my friend timed the line and we only waited for 50 minutes. Next, we tried to find the line for Slinky Dog Dash. After receiving conflicting answers, the runaround, and even an, "I don't know, good luck," from multiple Cast Members, we exited the land to find the beginning of the Slinky line. We were then told that there was only one line to enter the park that eventually broke off into the Slinky line. We were not about to wait to get back into the area we just left, so we got a Fastpass for Toy Story Mania that we didn't plan on using in order to be let into the land sooner. We still had to wait for our time, so we decided to get the exclusive Little Green Man alien popcorn bin—this took an entire hour. We then used our Fastpass to enter the land, found the Slinky line, and proceeded to wait for two and a half hours only for the ride to shut down due to rain. But we've come this far and rain was not about to stop us. We waited an hour, still in line and under a covered area, for the rain to stop. Then, we waited another hour and a half to get on the ride from there once it reopened (mainly because they prioritized people who missed their Fastpass time due to the rain). After that, we used the mobile order feature on the My Disney Experience app to skip part of the line at Woody's Lunchbox.

Did you know that there is actually a psychological science to waiting? In the hospitality industry, this science is the difference between "perceived wait" and "actual wait." A perceived wait is how long you feel like you are waiting, while the actual wait is, of course, the real and factual time you wait. There are eight things that affect the perceived wait time: unoccupied time feels longer than occupied time, pre-process waits feel longer than in-process waits, anxiety makes waits feel longer, uncertain waits are longer than certain waits, unexplained waits are longer than explained waits, unfair waits are longer than equitable waits, people will wait longer for more valuable service and solo waiting feels longer than group waiting.

Our perceived wait time for Alien Spinning Saucers was short because we expected it to be longer. Our wait for the popcorn seemed longer because it was unoccupied and unexplained. Our wait for the rain to stop so the ride could reopen seemed shorter because it was explained. Our wait between the ride reopening and getting on the coaster seemed longer because it felt unfair for Disney to let so many Fastpass holders through while more people waited through the rain. Our entire wait for Slinky Dog Dash seemed longer because we were not told the wait time in the beginning. Our wait for our food after placing a mobile order seemed shorter because it was an in-process wait. We also didn't mind wait long wait times for any of these experiences because they were new and we placed more value on them than other rides or restaurants at Disney. The people who arrived at 1 AM just added five hours to their perceived wait

Some non-theme park examples of this science of waiting in the hospitality industry would be waiting at a restaurant, movie theater, hotel, performance or even grocery store. When I went to see "Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom," the power went out in the theater right as we arrived. Not only did we have to wait for it to come back and for them to reset the projectors, I had to wait in a bit of anxiety because the power outage spooked me. It was only a 30-minute wait but felt so much longer. At the quick-service restaurant where I work, we track the time from when the guest places their order to the time they receive their food. Guests in the drive-thru will complain about 10 or more minute waits, when our screens tell us they have only been waiting four or five minutes. Their actual wait was the four or five minutes that we track because this is when they first request our service, but their perceived wait begins the moment they pull into the parking lot and join the line because this is when they begin interacting with our business. While in line, they are experiencing pre-process wait times; after placing the order, they experience in-process wait times.

Establishments in the hospitality industry do what they can to cut down on guests' wait times. For example, theme parks offer services like Disney's Fastpass or Universal's Express pass in order to cut down the time waiting in lines so guests have more time to buy food and merchandise. Stores like Target or Wal-Mart offer self-checkout to give guests that in-process wait time. Movie theaters allow you to check in and get tickets on a mobile app and some quick-service restaurants let you place mobile or online orders. So why do people still get so bent out of shape about being forced to wait?

On Toy Story Land unboxing day, I witnessed a woman make a small scene about being forced to wait to exit the new land. Cast Members were regulating the flow of traffic in and out of the land due to the large crowd and the line that was in place to enter the land. Those exiting the land needed to wait while those entering moved forward from the line. Looking from the outside of the situation as I was, this all makes sense. However, the woman I saw may have felt that her wait was unfair or unexplained. She switched between her hands on her hips and her arms crossed, communicated with her body language that she was not happy. Her face was in a nasty scowl at those entering the land and the Cast Members in the area. She kept shaking her head at those in her group and when allowed to proceed out of the land, I could tell she was making snide comments about the wait.

At work, we sometimes run a double drive-thru in which team members with iPads will take orders outside and a sequencer will direct cars so that they stay in the correct order moving toward the window. In my experience as the sequencer, I will inform the drivers which car to follow, they will acknowledge me and then still proceed to dart in front of other cars just so they make it to the window maybe a whole minute sooner. Not only is this rude, but it puts this car and the cars around them at risk of receiving the wrong food because they are now out of order. We catch these instances more often than not, but it still adds stress and makes the other guests upset. Perhaps these guests feel like their wait is also unfair or unexplained, but if they look at the situation from the outside or from the restaurant's perspective, they would understand why they need to follow the blue Toyota.

The truth of the matter is that your perceived wait time is always going to be longer than your actual wait time if you can't take a minute to focus on something other than yourself. We all want instant gratification, I get it. But in reality, we have to wait for some things. It takes time to prepare a meal. It takes time to experience a ride at a theme park that everyone else wants to go on. It takes time to ring up groceries. It takes patience to live in this world.

So next time you find yourself waiting, take a minute to remember the difference between perceived and actual wait times. Think about the eight aspects of waiting that affect your perceived wait. Do what you can to realize why you are waiting or keep yourself occupied in this wait. Don't be impatient. That's no way to live your life.

Cover Image Credit:

Aranxa Esteve

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What We're Witnessing Is One Of Humanity's Biggest Tests–Will We Stand Up Or Stand By?

It's time for a mental overhaul: Turn the volume up on the news, read into the issues, recognize what is wrong.

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As I pushed the button to speed up the stairmaster at the gym, I stared absentmindedly at the TV screens across all of the walls in the cardio section. I breathed heavily as I pressed on and didn't think about what I was watching and seeing. Our joke of a president, wildfires, and babies at the border that broke my heart seemed to fly by as I climbed on and on.

But they were there, in my mind. Like everything else that is wrong. Spinning. I think I've landed myself in the most unfortunate mental space during these Trump years. And here is why.

When Trump was elected, I was a first semester college student, experiencing a whirlwind of my own and then heartbroken to see Hillary nearly fade from view. It was the nightmare I feared for so many months but what was more sickening was the fact that I knew, as a young white woman, it would not hit me as hard as others.

And being in a stressful time, being so young, and seeing something so heart-wrenching, so incredibly cruel, and so concerning happen to the country left me hopeless at first.

If you've read any other pieces I've written, you might have sensed that. You also may have sensed my drive to veer away from that sense of hopelessness and I hope, maybe you felt motivated to step up.

But as I climbed on and on during this stairmaster workout, I felt like I was at the bottom of a very large hole and as I screamed for help, no one could hear me and trying to climb out myself would be useless.

In the Trump era, a girl who was once so enthusiastic and active and empowered, now found herself hopeless and living with a mindset that actions don't actually make a difference. I'd probably tell you otherwise, but this is an honest account of how I feel, and yes, that girl is me.

I'm not a politician, I'm not in a place where I have ample time to give up my job to be an advocate, and I'm finding that as life speeds by, other interests fall in the way of my path. A few years ago, I was that annoying teacher's pet type kid who ran for every student-body election, was in a million clubs, and wrote for the school paper. Back then, I was immersed in my little bubble of high school and felt that my words and my actions could make a difference. Often, they did. Even on the outside, being a leader in my community paid off. But in the adult world, life got overwhelming. And then we were thrown this asshole of a president and suddenly, the news and every part of the world became a battleground – what would he say next, who would he threaten, what would he shock us with, and mostly, what would he reveal about our country through his actions?

Trump supporters have not gone away quietly. They are alive and well in their masses. And the most important thing we can take away from Donald Trump is that, the worst and most nightmarish thing CAN happen in what's supposed to be the greatest nation on Earth (I'd beg to differ but we'll save that for another article) and when it does, we'll be able to see with the utmost clarity who the people of our country are and how deeply-rooted racism, xenophobia, hate, and bigotry really are. And it's a crumbling, sinking, devastating feeling we get from seeing this reality.

I'm not going to lie to you, every time I know of someone in my life or my circle that is a Trump supporter, I'm stuck wondering if they're incredibly, incredibly stupid or if they managed to hide a disgusting truth so well. Don't EVEN get me started on the people who go on and on and on about how they have friends who voted for Trump and friends who voted for Hillary and no matter what they're still friends.

That mentality is weak, that mentality is being a bystander, and that mentality condones evil. I HAD friends who voted for Trump. Note the past tense. They're not a part of my circle now. I prefer to keep the accepting, loving, equality-supporting, and DECENT human beings close. I know I know, how dare I label someone a racist or evil or horrible for a VOTE? Sue me.

Let me remind you, the votes we cast in any election are valuable. Have been fought for. Are still fought for. They are the center, the core, of our democracy. If you valued that so little as to vote for an ORANGE who is applauded for his racism, his hate, and who vows to tear our nation apart, you're not someone I want to associate with.

Something that people take so much pride in through their support for this man is how he "really speaks his mind and says what he thinks,".

When I hear this kind of language, I recall a teammate I used to have. In every bit of honesty, she was one of the most mean and disrespectful people I've met. But she was fast in the boat and did very well. One of the best people on our team. And whenever she said something mean, everyone would make the excuse… "Oh, that's just Sarah,"* or, "She's just like that,". They excuse poor behavior and being a bad person because of a status on a team, just like people excuse Trump's cruelty for him simply "speaking his mind,". And he's not even a star athlete – he a failed businessman and annoying reality TV star who might have some ounce of charisma if you're into that orange, nasty kind of charisma.

These people, who follow him and who believe he's simply speaking a truth that we need to hear, are the biggest problem. They're bystanders to the truth that needs to be heard, that he is a monster. But just like they are bystanders to the problem that sits in the oval office, I feel as though I am a bystander in a different way.

I'm not like them, but as I watch it all unfold and go about my life, I feel that I need to do more. But I also find that I am stifled by the news, the disaster that is unfolding before my eyes, and without much power in being an ordinary citizen that I can see and believe in during these dark times, I say with the saddest honesty that I feel like a bystander too. I'm turning a blind eye, in some ways. And I am part of the problem. We all are. But to what end can we continue under this disgraceful, discouraging, conditions?

By realizing that he's on a path of destruction like a hurricane. And his that truthfully, things may get worse before they get better. And most importantly, the ones we love that are bound to fall victim to his evil policies are going to get hurt. We're coming up on a crucial time where we must have a societal reckoning – how can we be a voice for the voiceless, how can we amplify the oppressed and oppress the hateful voices from the other side? How can we be of action when action seems impossible?

I've chosen to write. And to write until I feel the hope again. But we all can realize that this is the greatest test we've come across, and we're going to fail if we don't come to terms with one thing: This IS wrong. We might not come out in good shape. The people who struggle the most in this country will continue to hurt. And how we think, how we act consequently, how we raise our children, and how we choose to live our lives will determine if we give them a fighting chance.

It's time for a mental overhaul: Turn the volume up on the news, read into the issues, recognize what is wrong.

I'm begging, for every person on the streets tonight, for every toddler stuck at the border, for every family wondering about their fate as a minority in this country. For all of us.

This is not normal, and never will be. America deserves better. Press on.

*Name altered

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https://pixabay.com/en/trump-donald-trump-donald-president-1915253/

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