Personal Finance

Keeping positive in a toxic environment

 personal achievement
Learn to be satisfied with personal achievements and not solely working towards pleasing others. PHOTO | FOTOSEARCH 

Sadly, we still don’t comprehend that working towards pleasing others is an exercise in futility.

Each person’s idea of pleasure is a complex and dynamic process to very unique states of mind.

Attempting to keep up with that is sure to send us running around life like headless chickens.

Leave it be. While it may be considered a good endeavour in some circumstances, others’ pleasure is their responsibility. Ours is to fully appreciate who we are, articulate our vision, and inculcate it into our every endeavour.

That said, we have a tendency to take offence on even the slightest provocation.


This happens because we have been conditioned to react to our environment using our physical senses. We are happy when praised and immediately deflated when criticised.

This an unhealthy and unproductive emotional rollercoaster to ride. Allow me to suggest that any criticism whether or not specifically targeted at us is a gift, however difficult it may be to hear because it offers us an opportunity to grow. Often, it is our views of the words used, the tone of voice applied,the number of people witnessing it and more importantly our state of mind at the time.

If we invested a little time investigating our feelings, we would discover that the bruises have less to do with the message or messenger and more to do with incomplete self-actualisation work within us. In place of taking offence, we have got to muster requisite maturity to rise above the moment and own up to our own inadequacies and sensitivities.

This remains our responsibility. We are rarely going to be surrounded by people who constantly walk on egg-shells around us to that our feelings remain intact, however much they love us.

If they did, enjoy it knowing that it makes for unfair relationships that soon

buckle under the weight of such unreasonable expectations.

We have got to acknowledge that we, alone are responsible for controlling our feelings.

No other person has the power to control how we feel unless we willingly give them that power. It rarely is about the other person, the situation,the time of day or month.

If we are internally aligned with ourselves, external messaging remains just that; external. It cannot, of its own strength penetrate our feelings to ignite unhelpful reactions like offence at what others’ words, actions and/or inactions.

How much control do you have over your sentiments?