How to Manage Your Energy Around Disagreeable People


Let's face it, we can't get along with everyone. Disagreeable people exist, and sometimes it's hard not to let their negativity impact us. While completely stopping yourself from caring about someone's dislike is unrealistic, there are healthy ways to manage your emotional response and protect your energy.


Understanding Emotional Contagion

Humans are social creatures, and our emotions are surprisingly contagious. This phenomenon, called emotional contagion, is partly explained by mirror neurons, which fire in our brains when we witness an emotion in others . This can be a positive force, but it can also mean negativity rubs off on us.


Mirror Neurons Explained (Optional)

Mirror neurons are a specialized group of neurons located in the frontal lobe of the brain. They are believed to play a role in empathy, imitation, and social learning. When we see someone perform an action or experience an emotion, these neurons fire in a similar way as if we were performing the action or experiencing the emotion ourselves.


Setting Boundaries with Disagreeable People

Here's the good news: you can control who and what influences your emotional state. Here are some strategies to set boundaries with disagreeable people:


Limit Interactions: You don't have to subject yourself to negativity. If someone consistently brings you down, limit your interactions with them. This could mean polite declines to social invitations or keeping conversations brief.


Cognitive Reframing: How you interpret a situation can significantly impact your emotional response. Cognitive reframing is a technique where you challenge negative thoughts and replace them with more positive or neutral ones. For example, if someone makes a rude comment, reframe it as a reflection of their own issues, not a failing on your part.


Focus on What You Can Control: Dwelling on someone else's negativity is a recipe for frustration. Instead, focus on what you can control: your own reactions and how much time and energy you invest in the situation.


Cultivating Inner Strength

Sometimes, disagreeable people are unavoidable. Here are some ways to cultivate inner strength and resilience:


Practice Self-Compassion: Treat yourself with kindness and understanding, just as you would a friend. Acknowledge your feelings, but don't let them define you.


Develop Strong Social Support: Surround yourself with positive and supportive people who uplift and energize you.


Focus on Your Values: Living a life aligned with your values fosters a sense of purpose and inner peace. When you know what's important to you, the negativity of others holds less power.


Remember, managing your energy around disagreeable people is an ongoing process. Be patient with yourself, and prioritize your mental and emotional well-being.