Negative attitudes are self-fulfilling prophecies. They can also be contagious. If we have a negative attitude, it will not only keep us down; it will also bring down the people around us.
Think negatively and the world around us seems negative. I call negative people drainers, because they drain the life out of others.
Conversely a positive, cheerful and grateful attitude will make everything seem right. They fill us up.
We all walk around life with two imaginary buckets. One is filled with fuel, the other with water.
We have a choice when we are ambushed by a negative conversation. We can either throw our bucket of fuel on it, igniting the negativism, or we can douse it with our water bucket.
Most negative people do not realize how negative their demeanors have become. But simply saying, "Gee Joe, you are so negative. You drain the life out of me", is not going to work. That will only throw the bucket of fuel on the situation.
When a negative attitude is displayed, try to take what is said, and make a positive statement back to the person.
Watch these examples. Negative person says, "That customer is such a pain. He drives me crazy with his demands." We could answer, "Yes he is very demanding, but that is why we have our jobs, to satisfy customers' demands." The negative person says, "This is not how we have always done this." A good response: "Glad you noticed we are making changes around here to improve our services."
One encounter like this will not change a negative person's attitude overnight. It takes time and patience, but after a while, it may click in their mind, "Hmm, no use in complaining around them or others. "
Ideally, they will start coming to you thinking, "Help me see the good in this."
Do you want to throw your bucket of fuel on the fire, or your bucket of water? The choice is ours.