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  • Writer's pictureShannon Wiggins

Using Negativity to Fuel Your Potential

Have you ever had that moment where it just clicks? I recently did. I had a moment of clarity that hit me out of nowhere. I realized my potential. Not that I didn't believe in myself before, but this realization was something different, and exceedingly more powerful.


As I continue to grow my business and work to provide an entirely different counseling experience than anything I've seen in this area, I often find myself thinking about all the negativity I've come across in this journey. All the negative, rude and downright hurtful things people have said and done. All the times I've felt like giving up because of it. It's not as though I want to dwell on these thoughts, but when things get hard, it's easy to wonder if there is some truth in those hurtful words...


Well, THERE'S NOT.❤️


It took me longer than I would like to admit, but I finally realized those saying these things were speaking out of fear. Fear of what I will become. Fear of what I will accomplish. Fear of my potential. See, they were attacking me because they could see my potential and felt I posed a threat. Meanwhile, I was completely oblivious. So oblivious that I started to believe the negativity.


I always thought when people said "They're being mean to you because they're jealous" that they were just trying to raise the person's spirits. It made no sense to me how someone, especially a person in power or someone that seemed to have it all together, could be jealous of me. Turns out, they can. I'm here to tell you, that neighbor, that coworker, that boss, that "friend", the ones who make snide comments and attempt to undermine you-- yeah, them. They see your potential, even if you don't. So here's 3 tips to help you use the negativity to fuel your potential:

1. Recognize it for what it is: There's a reason this is my first tip. Until you recognize the negativity for what it is, a defense mechanism of someone that fears your potential, you can't react to it properly. You may instead find yourself internalizing the negativity and accepting the criticism as fact. In order to utilize negativity for your good, you have to first recognize it for what it is. You can't fight an enemy you don't know is there.

2. Realize anger is energy: If I were to tell you that the criticism and negativity shouldn't effect you or you should simply be able to rise above it at all times, I wouldn't be a very good therapist. When someone puts you down or mistreats you, you are entitled to your emotions. And I suspect anger would be one of them. Anger is a powerful emotion. When channeled appropriately, people are capable of amazing things. Now let me be clear. I'm not saying you should take your anger out on anything or anyone physically, because let's face it, you'd probably land yourself in a lot more trouble than it's worth. What I am saying, is anger is energy that you can pour into your productivity. Literally use it to fuel your potential. Think about the Civil Rights Movement and Women's Suffrage. People were angry about their treatment and used that energy to produce change.

3. Accept the challenge: Not all criticism is bad. Some of it is constructive, despite the messenger's intent. Just because someone is trying to hurt you and tear you down doesn't mean you can't use it to your advantage. Sure, they probably could have found a more polite or professional way to say it. But is there anything there that you can use to improve yourself and push your potential? If so, take it as a challenge and rise to the occasion!


I hope these tips help someone out there, whether you're working in a toxic workplace environment, in a negative relationship, or have a parent that only seems to find fault in you. Trust me, I know first hand how much it sucks, but you don't have to let it change you and it certainly doesn't define you.


Do you have any tips on using negativity to fuel your potential? Leave them in the comments below! And be sure to share this blog, because someone needs this...

If you find yourself surrounded by negativity that is really having an impact on you and you need a little more help than what's provided in the tips above, it may be time to seek professional help. If this is you, fill out the contact form on the site or call directly at 910.745.0303 to schedule an appointment. I'm here to help you live you best life.❤️

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