My New Year’s resolution is to be more optimistic. The problem is, I work in a very negative environment. I think my negativity is making me feel worse at work. How do I keep my “glass half full” mindset? K.S., New York, NY
Smart move! The best thing about optimism is that even if it’s unwarranted you’ll still feel better just by choosing to see the bright side.
Understand, though, that complaining can be legitimate. Listen to your coworkers and determine if you think it is. If so, try to move them to resolution, e.g., “How can you best move forward given x, y, z?”
If they’re complaining relentlessly, share your resolution. Tell them you’d like to talk about more positive things because you believe negativity is affecting your work and your feelings about your job. Choose to walk away.
Train yourself to look for the good. Ask yourself, “What is the best thing about x?” Awareness is the most important predictor of success. If you slip up, try again. Protecting your mindset is a daily process and well worth the effort. Good luck!