3 Simple Ways To Stop Jerks From Ruining Your Positive Attitude In The Workplace

by Jan 21, 20120 comments

The weekend is over. It’s Monday. It’s time to go back to work.  Bu you have this sinking feeling because is becoming more and more draining. Some jerks there continue to put a damper on your mood and attitude.

I’m talking about those that say mean things to you in front of others. Those that tend to stab you behind your back.

Hopefully this is not your boss I’m describing here.

But whether it is or not, you don’t feel like facing those jerks one more day. That reminds me when I was a kid in school in Haiti.

The teachers at my school had the permission to whip the students. Many of them took liberal advantage of it. One of them was my elementary teacher. He was so mean that I dreaded going to go his class for the school year.

He would often use a whip made of cowhide to scold us. I mean this thing can sink in your skin and cut you open.

Now, mind you, I was a very good boy. I didn’t get into trouble. But for whatever reason, when the teacher gets upset and frustrated, he would take it out on the entire row of students.

I used to dread going to school on Mondays. I would feel a knot in my stomach. I’m sure it’s the same for when you wake to go to work some bullies in the workplace. Some co-workers can be mean.

The jerks’ attitude and words are like a cowhide whip. They can slice your hearts open.

You see, the job is NEVER the problem. All places are neutral. But toxic people can make an environment toxic. When you have to share your space with insensitive and inconsiderate people, life can be tough.

Jerks in the workplace can get under your skin and cause you lose your peace of mind!

You know, many times in my keynote speeches I encourage my audience members to keep a positive attitude in the workplace.

But, when negative people are all around you, how are you supposed to keep a positive attitude in the workplace? How do you even keep your sanity? How do you keep your cool?

Here’s what so unnerving about this: You spend more time at work than at home. The last thing you want in your life is a job where others make life miserable for you. That’s not a good feeling at all.

When you are upset and frustrated at work, it affects your home as well. You have a tendency to take it out on your family members and friends.

I look at this way: if you are not happy anywhere, you are not happy everywhere. When your peace of mind is disturbed in one area of your life, every other area is negatively affected.

We are talking about a real and serious problem here. Dealing with jerks in the workplace is really draining. Now, do you want to know what I often wonder?

I wonder how in the world a company would hire jerks? Who hires those bad apples?

Those questions have always puzzled me. Jerks are liabilities to companies. They don’t belong to the asset list. They chase away the good guys! Why don’t they fire them? Is it because their bullying behavior scares others from reporting them?

All right, let me share with you how to keep a positive attitude in the workplace to prevent jerks from chasing you away.

3 Simple Ways To Keep Stop The Jerks From Ruining It For You

1. Get yourself in the right mindset

You already know some of your co-workers or the jerks can make life difficult for you. It’s no secret that you have to deal with them everyday. So, you might as well accept this reality.

The key is to get your mind in the right frame so that you do not let them get under your skin. How do you do so? Well, engagement in self-talk that can keep you positive.

Basically, before you leave your home, talk to yourself. Say something like this to yourself, “I refuse to allow anyone to steal my peace. There’s nothing anybody can say to me today to make me upset.”

Simply put, be ready to face the day. You see, once you tell yourself you are not going to be upset, you are being pro-active.

Power is when you plan your response before the event happens.

Usually, the jerks will catch you off-guard and say things to get to you. My advice is to catch it and silently say, “I knew you were coming.” Center yourself and hold on to your power. Don’t give it to them.

2. Stop Rehearsing The Jerks

I once heard a story about some travelling monks in the Far East. According to them, it’s a disgrace for a monk to carry a woman on his back. During the travel, they came to  river that was very agitated. They had to cross it to get to the other side.

There was a woman crying on the side of the river. She wanted to get home to feed her baby. But, she could not cross the river. One of the monks laid aside his belief and carried the woman on his back across the river.

The other monks were enraged. They kept chastising the helping monk. Three days later, they were still at it. Finally, the monk couldn’t take it any longer.

He said to his fellow monks, “Look, I carried the woman on my back for 10 minutes. You guys have been carrying her for three days!” Hmmmmm…

The morale of the story is, you should not be carrying a jerks on your back for days. I want you to take a moment to reflect. Who is it you’ve been carrying on your back? Who is it that you’ve been rehearsing in your head?

I look at it this way: The more you rehearse the jerks, the more importance you’re giving him or her.  The more value you are attaching to them. To me, it’s something has no value, you get rid of it. Period.

If you’re carrying too many jerks on your back, you’ll never have space to carry the amazing people you come across on your path.

3. Crack A BIG Smile Now And Then

To keep a positive attitude in the workplace, you have to feel good on the inside of you. And the best tool you have at your disposal is a smile. Now, when you are upset, your first reaction is to contract your facial muscles.

By the way, I am fully aware that you may dismiss as common knowledge. I invite to suspend your judgment and stay with me for a moment.

Have you ever seen people whose faces always look like they are constipated? Yes, they look like they are always mad. All they have to do change that look is show a smile.

A smile is ray of light that tells the world everything is all right with you.

Now, this not to say you should go around grinning from ear to ear. No. People might think that you’re kind of weird.

You know, bullies in the workplace are constantly looking for people who are weak. They tend to pick on the weak. By that I mean they pick on you because they know you are vulnerable. However, when they see you smiling, they don’t think you are a good target.

I once heard a statistic about smiling. It is said that it takes 17 muscles to smile and 42 muscles to frown. That means it takes way more work to frown.

Here’s the kicker: When you smile, you release a chemical in your body that is healing and therapeutic. That chemical is called endorphin. That explains why many hospitals encourage their patients to watch comedy.

Simply put, when you frown, you make yourself sick. The remedy? A smile.

Bullies expect you to be upset or they feel powerless.

Okay, you probably were expecting me to say grab a four by four and smack the jerk. You probably were not expecting me to ask you to smile, right? After all, jerks can interpret your smile differently. That’s true. But you’re not smiling for the jerk. You’re doing it for you!

When I speak, I usually have a smile contest where I get the audience members to voluntary participate. Other times, their co-workers would pick them. It’s always a lot of fun.

The audience loves the contest because it creates a glow in the room. Everybody would join in and start smiling. They also feel good. It’s as I if I turn on the light full blast. Yes, it maybe kind of corny. But it works.

So, next time you are rehearsing a jerk in your head, crack a smile. In fact, start laughing out loud. If others ask you why you are laughing, tell them this: “I’m celebrating my new life. Jerks will never get me upset again.” That will spread a positive attitude in the workplace really fast.

Lastly, pick up a copy of the Optimist Creed form Optimist International and commit to memory. It will really help keep a positive attitude in the workplace. Follow this link to get the Optimist Creed. It’s REALLY awesome



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