Don’t get me wrong, I love drama, as long as it’s in a movie I’m watching. In my personal life, I try to stay as far away from it I can. A few months back I created the graphic below in response to all the people on Facebook posting a LOT of drama on Facebook.
I used to feel like drama was following me and guess what? I used to be one of the people saying to myself things like “why does this keep happening to me”, “there always seems to be a black cloud over my head”, and many other similar sentences. I can tell you, I was not always a lot of fun to be around; I was miserable and tired of things “happening” TO me. I don’t remember the exact date, but I remember the day I told Mark, “I’m done with the pity party, I’m going to be grateful for what I have, I’m no longer focusing on what I don’t”. What do you think happened? You guessed it! Drama quit “following me”. While making that one decision was a pivotal point in my life, drama is all around in the world and keeping drama out of my life is a daily practice. Below are five steps I take to help keep drama out of my life.
Stop WATCHING Drama
Do you know what CNN stands for? Constantly Negative News. ABC; Always Broadcasting Crap. The easiest way to follow this step? Turn off the TV. Yes, turn it off. Stop watching the news, reality shows, docu-dramas, etc. If you can’t completely shut off the TV, limit the shows you watch to a couple favorites a week. We went 12 years without local TV or cable and we didn’t miss it. Mark and I have TV again, and wow, there is a LOT of created drama in the news, they make drama out of nothing and don’t even get me started on the reality shows.
Stop FOLLOWING Drama
Who are you following on social media? Just like TV, you have the power to turn off the drama posted, tweeted, snapped, Instagramed, etc. When the drama is coming from people I follow, I quit following and/or unfriend them. What to do if the drama queens or kings are family and they would create even MORE drama if you unfriended them? Unfollow them. Another way to have less drama in your newsfeed; quit liking, commenting and sharing controversial posts. It is really that simple. I have been criticized for doing the above, but I am unapologetic about what is in MY newsfeed and it has cut down on the drama even more than shutting off the TV.
Stop LISTENING To and SPEAKING Drama
Are you standing around the water cooler at work listening to or spreading gossip about another co-worker, complaining about your boss or bitching about _____________(fill in the blank). One word of advice: STOP. All the above does is create negative energy, aka DRAMA, and once again you have the power to walk away. If it is the thing to do it and makes you FEEL like you fit in with your co-workers, it’s time to look for a new position, job or place to work. My advice, walk away, and head back to your desk and work. The result may be your co-workers start gossiping about you (guess what, if they were gossiping about another co-worker in his/her absence, they are already doing it in your absence). Unless you have a boss that encourages gossip, he or she will take notice of you working while the rest of the office is standing around the water cooler, and you might just get a promotion.
Stop HANGING AROUND Drama
I guess this tip could almost fit in with #3, but I’ll gearing this toward your personal life. Late personal development guru Jim Rohn stated “you are the sum of the five people you spend the most time with”. Let that sink in for a couple of moments. Are the people you hang out with loaded with drama? Over the last few years as I’ve tried to remove as much drama as possible, I’ve had to “bless and release” a fair share of people in many areas of my life. Some were people I followed on Facebook, others were friends and even some family. While I can’t completely shut out family members, I can choose to spend less time with them. A couple of years ago I had to let go of a couple of friends who live out of state. I first started by unfollowing them on social media, but it wasn’t enough as they could still see my posts. I finally decided to make what seems like harsh decision; I unfriended them as I would get a pit in my stomach every time I received a notification they had commented on one of my posts. By unfriending the offenders, I no longer cringe when I click on my notifications and enjoy an uplifting scroll through Facebook and my other social media channels.
Lastly and most importantly, Stop CREATING Drama
The best way to remove drama in your life is practice patience, empathy and understanding of others and in turn it stops creating it. Do you realize you are creating drama when a driver cuts you off and you get all worked up and you create a story of how much that person is a jerk, flipping them off, honking, etc. when in reality he may not have seen you? Do you get impatient with a cashier or the person ahead of you while waiting in line at the store and being a jerk when you check out? If you do, STOP. All you are doing is creating drama where there doesn’t have to be. You can also stop creating drama using all the steps above, when you choose to not participate.
Feel free to comment below on where you can practice more patience, empathy and understanding of others to have less drama in your life?