This is another unpopular opinion that might strike up some arguments here and there but I just want to say, hear me out.
I have been hearing and seeing a lot of things around the topic of self-care, finding happiness, or ways to live a happy life. There are just so many ways you can improve your own, without having to make an effort too much, and it has become as easy as ignoring those people who can’t benefit you or your happiness.
Why is that?
Maybe we’re just too afraid to get in touch with that negative energy that surrounds those difficult people that we decide not to be around them anymore.
The thing is, we are so eager to find an easy way towards living a happy life, that we made ourselves believe we can fix our own bubble and ignore those unhelpful things around us.
In positive psychology, there’s this thing called negative bias. In simple meaning, a negative bias is the innate tendency of the mind to absorb negative emotions more strongly than those positive things. As a result, positive emotions tend to appear more subtle, and negative ones may feel very powerful.
This is one of the reasons why we can’t just ignore those things. Our brains are wired for those negative events. And apparently, our brains are more attracted to those too! This means that we can’t just take a shortcut to become instantly happy for our own good, and so what are we missing?
We’re missing the chance to educate
Ignoring toxic people in our lives means that we miss the chance to educate them; to let them know that they have been practicing their life in the wrong way. This makes us an enabler of those bad habits too. It’s not just enough that when the going gets tough, you get going–literally.
Be part of the change
Change sounds way better than cutting off. It is more humane to take action towards change and help those people who struggle with toxic traits too, as being part of the human support system. Who knows, maybe they have been in a toxic relationship, they grew up with an imperfect family or troublesome friends.
Psychologically, the way humans respond to their situations is what makes them exhibit toxic traits. And the way they respond is hugely influenced by their environment, moral beliefs, cultural differences, individual differences, and such. So why not try to help those people understand that there is a better way to see things in life?
Cutting people out can’t make you entirely happy
On a different view, you can avoid this if you are just starting to establish a relationship with them. Otherwise, don’t kid yourself. Even if you cut people out, you can’t constantly ignore them. They will have space in your life. Especially if one of them is your relative, your old friend, or your boss, it is much easier said than done.
It isn’t the way to establish happiness. The word happiness is as shallow as a feeling. The deeper meaning of finding joy in your life, and being able to practice it requires a much harder effort and consistent adaptation of better ways. So if you’re ignoring people just for the sake of finding your happiness, you’re looking at it the wrong way.
It’s not enough to just take all the good stuff in
We think that if we avoid those bad stuff, we’ll only get all the good stuff in. Who says anything about that? You can’t have all the yang in the world and reject the yin that comes with it. Everything is made balanced.
More importantly, the bad stuff tends to have good outcomes too. We also learn from those people too. Who knows maybe you also need some change in you, why not encourage each other to become better?
Science shows that those people who have undergone major predicaments in their life are happier people than those who have established an easy lifestyle. They tend to be more resilient, and more knowledgeable about certain things they have experienced.
This means that we can learn from them too.
You can’t find joy by selfishly building your own comfortable bubble
One of the reasons why we choose to let those people go is because admit it, they can’t help us. It’s useless to waste energy on them. Why do we always think about what’s good for us? They may not be able to help us become better, but we could help them instead.
What if everything’s a lost cause? What if they don’t want to change, or what if they are very hard to persuade? Do you need to be affected by this? As I said, you will likely become affected by this. One of the ways to help you somehow control this is don’t take it personally.
I know it can be SO TIRING sometimes. It makes you want to feel not to just care at all because it’s MORE CONVENIENT if you don’t. But isn’t it better to engage in some healthy arguments or intervention once in a while until those people realize they’re habits are very unhelpful, than just stay away from them every time they come and go in your life?
You miss out the things you can learn from it
I, too, have just realized this as I was listening to a podcast about finding true happiness in our lives, but we are all ready to adapt and learn AMAZINGLY almost every day in our lives.
We learn new things every day, and if you’re reading this, I hope you learned one today.
If you want to find joy, what’s best for you is to change your habits, change your ways. Those things that you seem to agree with, challenge them now. Approach everything with a beginner’s mind, and welcome each moment, each lesson that comes your way.
“Joy doesn’t come from working everything in your life perfectly, it comes from adopting better habits.”Dr. Laurie Santos
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