When You Feel You’re Always Invited to the Argument

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There are people in this life who always seem to have something to say, no matter the conversation. You could be talking about how beautiful it is outside today, and they are going to complain about it being too hot or too sunny. I like to call them Negative Nellies.

Hi, my name is Chloe, and I’m guilty of being a Negative Nelly at times.

No one is positive all the time, except maybe the Dali Lama. That guy is just awesome. We’re all going to have moments, possibly even days at a time, where we can’t seem to find the sunshine for the clouds. And that’s okay, as long as we don’t take up permanent residence there. That’s not what I’m referring to here.

Before I did my big social media purge awhile back, I had a friend of a friend who I followed on Facebook. She and I never spent much time together in the real world, except when she was injured a few years ago and needed some help with rides and cooking. In my mind, how someone behaves when they are immobile and in pain, is probably not how they usually are, so I took her complaining with a grain of salt.

Fast forward a couple of years, and I began to realize it is part of who she is. Each and every post is a complaint. Sometimes it’s subtle, other times it’s more vague-booking, down to out-and-out full blown bitching. And nothing ever seems to make this woman happy. I would scroll through comments from people who have known her for years, attempting to boost her mood, offer help, whatever the case may be for the complaint of the day. And nothing was good enough.

She was one of the first people to go, in the purge.

Often, I found myself drawn in to her posts, my fingers at the ready. I had something to say! And I won’t put it all on her, there were a number of people on my friend’s list at one point who were either complaining constantly, or posting things so ignorant that I felt compelled to speak my mind.

But just because you have been drawn in, either by invitation or your own feelings, doesn’t mean you have to attend every argument you’re invited to.

You have to pick your battles. There are going to be people in your life, whether they are friends, family, co-workers, who think and feel differently about things than you. We are all entitled to our own opinions. What you have to think about, ahead of joining in, is this:

Is that person willing to listen to another side?

Because if you know deep in your heart, that person is not going to hear what you have to say, be willing to see things from another point of view, then you’re wasting your breath. And you’re possibly setting yourself up for a lot of anger, hurt, and disappointment.

After many years, and many arguments that went nowhere, I have finally almost learned this lesson. There are still some subjects I feel very strongly about, where I’ll always state my opinion, because to me, remaining quiet isn’t an option. Unfortunately, a lot of those subjects tend to be political in nature, so that opens up an entirely different breed of argument, but it’s one I’ll continue to stand and fight.

When it comes to things that are truly important to us, there is never anything wrong with standing and fighting, but battling with individuals rarely ever accomplishes anything. Those battles are best fought on a larger field if we want to affect change.

Stand for what you believe in, but while you’re doing it, try not to let it turn you into a Negative Nelly. You’ll be much happier for it.

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