Having a positive mindset is crucial to running a successful business. But at times this can be easier said than done.

We hit hurdles. We lose a client. We have stress at home. We get tired and run down.

Sound familiar?

To create and retain a positive mindset we need to reduce the amount of negativity we are surrounded by. Things which affect us and can turn a positive mindset into a negative one are who you surround yourself with, what you see on social media and what you watch on the television. 

If we are surrounded by people who are negative or draining, this rubs off on us and we start to feel drained and fed up with ourselves.  If we constantly see posts on social media or the news full of doom and gloom this is going to start to weigh us down and have a negative impact on our mental wellbeing. 

To help retain a positive mindset, or regain it if yours is somewhat lacking, try the following three tips.

1. Distance yourself from negative people

This is something I did a very long time ago when I attended a workshop. It isn’t easy but I promise you it works.

Grab a piece of paper and write down the people you spend the most time with. Then add to this list people you don’t see very much but would like to see again. Try and get at least 10 names (you can have as many as you want). Include absolutely everyone from friends and family to colleagues and occasional acquaintances.

Now, on another piece of paper write down the numbers 10 to -10 in a column as below.

people you spend the most time withtip to regain a positive mindset

The next step needs to be done quickly and without much thought. If you have someone to help you, it can be easier. Get the other person to randomly read out the names you have written down with just a short pause between each. As they read out each name, you write down the name against the relevant number. Number 10 is for when you feel a surge of happiness and excitement at hearing the person’s name and the thought of seeing them. Minus 10 is when you feel sick to the stomach and would do anything to get out of meeting the person whose name has just been read out. This exercise can be quite telling and may well shock you. It may that you spend a lot of time with a family member but you mark them as minus two. Don’t feel guilty about this. You must be honest with yourself.

Now for the difficult part!

Cut out the negative people

Take a look at anyone in the negative bracket. These are the people you want to start to distance yourself from. This of course can be easier said than done, particularly if this is a work colleague or someone in your family who you live with. It could be your current ‘best’ friend but who over the years has turned into a moaning Minnie and who always has a drama going on. When you meet them you always come away feeling drained. Start to cut back on the number of get-togethers you have. Make yourself busy with other things or pre-book to go to events/meals etc with other people. This is going to feel uncomfortable to begin with and it’s going to take time, but it can be done. Believe me, as I’ve done it myself many years ago. The relief over time is huge!

Surround yourself with positive people

Now, look at the people in the positive bracket, particularly those in the higher range. Start to bring these people into your life more often. Arrange to meet up or have a chat on the phone. Maintain regular contact with these people. These are the ones you are going to bring positivity and happiness into your life. You don’t need to start stalking them or hanging out every week but just knowing they are there can be a huge boost. 

2. Cut out negative social media

There is a huge amount of negativity which surrounds us on social media and here is tip number 2.

Go to your social media channels. I personally use Facebook for most of my social media. And so that was my focus.
Start to scroll down through your newsfeed and identify the repeat offenders who consistently post negative chatter. These can be the people who constantly post and share scaremongering stories, conspiracy theories, political diatribes or just moan and groan.
Pick out every post you see where you feel your energy instantly drain from you, or even just by seeing a particular person’s name, you feel your energy drain.

Remove the negativity

Now, do one of two things. 

  1. If this is someone that you really do not care whether you ever see or speak to them again in your life, I suggest that you simply go and unfriend them.
  2. However, if it’s someone that you feel you would like to keep in contact with in the future just unfollow them. They won’t know that you’ve done this, they will stay as your friend, but you will stop seeing the negative chatter popping up on your newsfeed, day after day.

You can follow this procedure with groups you are in where all you see is negativity and arguing.  Simply unfollow.

Surround yourself with positivity

The next thing to do is to go back through your newsfeed and look at the people who when you see their name instantly feel your energy being lifted, whether because they ooze positivity, or whether it’s because they make you laugh.
Now select those to pop up in your newsfeed first.  You want to be filling yourself with these positive-minded people to help you stay in a positive mindset.
Honestly, I promise you if you do this, you will feel so much better.
Get rid of the mood hoovers – those people that suck the energy out of you. And fill your life with people who make you feel good.
To unfollow or add friends to the top of your newsfeed, watch the video below.

3. Choose more carefully what you watch on tv

Start to become more aware of what you watch on television and how the programme or movie makes you feel. I for one have drastically cut back on watching the news. No, I don’t want to bury my head in the sand and become oblivious to what is going on in the world around me, but I also know that watching the News at Ten and seeing children being killed in a war zone is not going to give me a good nights sleep.

We are constantly being bombarded with news articles and documentaries on global warming, crime rates, soaring energy costs and the like. No wonder we start to feel anxious and lose our positive mindset. You don’t need to cut these out entirely, but do limit the amount you watch. Anxiety and watching television are well documented.

If you are going to watch tv, start to watch things that make you feel good. Watch uplifting movies or documentaries or choose a good comedy. Schitt’s Creek is my all-time favourite for a good belly laugh. And cut out the binge-watching. Again, binge-watching television has been shown to affect mental health. This can be due to tending to binge-watch alone, increased inactivity and disturbed sleep. Try to switch to reading a good book or taking up a hobby rather than getting suckered into the television.


Follow the three top tips above and see how your mindset improves.