Saying 'no' to negativity

A person as demoniac as Hitler was in many senses the victim of the negative fall-out of a brutal upbringing. As a boy, Hitler wanted to be an artist. But his father was bitterly opposed to it and forcibly stopped him from pursuing his dream. After his father’s death, Hitler joined the Vienna Academy of Art.

 Unfortunately the Board did not let him continue because he had no School-leaving Certificate and also because the drawings he made were landscapes devoid of people. Without money and without support, Hitler lived on the streets along with tramps.

He made a living by painting postcards and clearing the snow from the houses of the rich. It was at this stage that he developed his hatred of Jews. In his mind, a Jewish professor had rejected his artwork, a Jewish doctor was responsible for his mother’s death and only Jews lived in the beautiful houses from which he laboriously cleared snow.

Negativity, real and imagined, drove out all reason from his mind. According to his sister, Paula Hitler, ‘I would have much preferred it if he had followed his original ambition and become an artist. It would have saved the world a lot of worries.’

Admittedly none in this world can escape negative influences. Set-backs, criticism and disappointments come, as a rule, to all of us, but we need not let them overcome us. This sounds easier said than done. However, it is possible to deflect the negativity of others if we keep a few rules in mind.

When critical remarks are made, it is good to ask oneself whether there is any truth in them. If there is, it calls for a revision of one’s attitudes and feelings.

On the other hand, when they are unjustified, a little understanding will go a long way in soothing hurt and in assuaging feelings. Perhaps the offender was worried. Or it may be that he was fearful or misinformed. In any case since the criticism was unfounded, there is no need to take it to heart.

One way of stepping out of this situation is to reach out to friends who are positive-minded. Also, doing something that pleases you can help a great deal in driving away depressing thoughts.

Small acts of kindness too can bring the kind of joy that not only erases negativity but puts you in a positive frame of mind. 
     
One should also make it a practice to take no part in negativity. Desist from making critical remarks and do not join in conversation that centres on negativity.

Above all do not over-react to others opinions. After all opinions are just that—opinions.

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