I would first like to just preface that post by saying that it will NOT discuss anything related to Internet Marketing, so I am sorry in advance to the readers who usually enjoy the tips and strategies we typically discuss.  However I will say that this post will cater to anyone in any industry, so I would highly recommend reading it!  It does get a little deep, so hopefully I don’t scare anyone off, but I wanted to discuss something I am really passionate about; being positive and optimistic.

After recently reading the post written on ProBlogger, “4 Things to Expect When You Become a A-List Blogger” by guest blogger Glen Allsopp, I was inspired to write this post.  I have tried to make it a life long goal to surround myself with positive people.  Regardless of whether it is personally or professionally I try and associate myself with people who have a positive outlook on life.  Life is too short to associate yourself with people who always look at the negatives in life.

Ignore the Critics

One thing that Glenn said in his post is that as you start to become more well-known in your industry, you will receive more public criticism.  No matter what it is that you do or say, there are always going to be people who are going to try and put you down.  That is just a part of life and the price you pay when you start to become more recognized.  I know its harder to brush the negative comments off, but really it is not worth the stress and frustration of worrying about them.  Don’t get me wrong, positive criticism or feedback is important to listen to, but the people who have a mission to make everyone else unhappy; just push them aside.

Treat People With Respect

I know this has been said a thousand times, but it should keep being reiterated…treat others the way you want to be treated.  Regardless of how people talk or treat you, take the high road and don’t sink to their level.  Something I have tried to always do, is kill people with kindness.

I don’t know Rand Fiskin from SEOmoz personally, but from reading his blog for years, I have gotten to learn about his personally and the type of person he is.  There is a great example of a debate the SEOmoz community was having after a blog post they released that contained controversial data  on a test they ran.  The comments started getting unproductive and border-line unprofessional, so this is what Rand said to the community, which I felt was an excellent way of handling the situation.

Personally I think Rand is 100% right with how he handled the situation.  Just from reading this comment, you can begin to see what type of person Rand is.  He encourages positive feedback and passion, but explains that comments that are harshly negative or go against the goal of creating a warm and positive environment to share your thoughts will not be tolerated.   In more or less words he is saying for the people who want to just be negative and not provide any value to the discussion…go play somewhere else.

Share Your Passions

For anyone who doesn’t know who Gary Vaynerchuk is, Google his name immediately and watch some of his videos and interviews.  This guy just lives and breathes positivity and passion… and it is contagious.  You cannot help but love they way he talks about things, because you can see how passionate he is about what he does.  By finding something that you are passionate about, it not only makes it easier to go to work everyday, but it will spread to everyone else that you interact with.

Balanced Life

In order to stay positive and energetic, you need to have a good work-life balance. I am all for working your ass off towards your goals, but at some point you need to unwind and recharge the batteries.  Part of allowing yourself to do this, is to not take on more work/projects than you can handle.  However, regardless of what is on your plate, you need to have an outlet to relieve stress and find a way to relax.  If you don’t have that outlet, you will find yourself burnt out and finding yourself being negative and unproductive.

Unless you are in retail where you have set hours, I don’t see why society has said that you MUST be working Monday-Friday between the hours of 8am – 5pm.  Why is that?  How many times have you found yourself killing time before 5pm on Friday?  or taking the Monday morning to just get back into the swing of things after the weekend?  Personally I just don’t get it.  Everybody works differently, so why not adjust your working schedule based on when you are most productive?  As long as work is getting done and employees are being productive, giving people the flexibility to work during times that they are 100% focused, will allow them to be much more productive.  Of course there will probably have to be a core set of hours each day that everyone may have to be available for team or customer meetings, but give people flex hours.  If people like working at night or on the weekends, encourage it!

With the more flexible working hours, it can allow for a much better lifestyle and work-life balance.  It gives you the opportunity to take care of errands during times that you are not focused on work.  It allows you to attend your kids baseball game at 4pm.  Overall it gives you the opportunity to manage your family and work schedules.

To The Haters

For all of the people who walk around everyday trying to put people down, point out flaws, and spread your negativity to others, I say STOP!  Turn your negative energy into a positive.

  • Start offering constructive criticism
  • Respect others and their decisions
  • Don’t be jealous of others fortune
  • Get off your a** and work for what you wat
  • If you only have something negative to say, don’t say it
  • Find your true passions
  • Start surrounding yourself around positive people
  • Embrace change

I truly believe that if you can stay positive, do what you are passionate about, and treat others with respect…you will succeed.