Getting off the toxic negativity train

I am currently reading Seth Godin’s book “Marketing You Cant Be Seen until you learn to See”

He gives very wise advice to people with a cause. That all important reminder that involves metaphors around starting small and growing your tribe and letting your tribe be advocates for the cause. You know the ones about not being able to boil the ocean. In his case its the difference between putting purple colouring ( Seth likes purple) in the ocean or in a swimming pool

Today I jumped in the ocean and invited everyone on LinkedIn to join the cause to fight toxic negativity in agriculture. Lets not stop at agriculture. Far too many other sectors use memes like below (sans my addition of yellow text) to feed their feeling undervalued base

When this meme ( sans my addition of yellow text) arrived by “Messenger” from some-one who was asking for advice on how to call it out, I wanted to scream. How do farmers get to a point where they feel so undervalued that we think its okay to bring the rest of the world down with us. When will we address the underlying cause that stops people realising how counterproductive this type of messaging is.

The impulse to devalue others always signals a diminished sense of self, as you must be in a devalued state to devalue. That’s why it’s so hard to put someone down when you feel really good (your value investment is high) and equally hard to build yourself up when you feel resentful. Source 

Why did I ignore Seth’s advice today. Because  I need a bigger tribe that believes in the cause. A tribe that wants everyone to thrive. Our farmers (and every sector who thinks like this) need help. They need communication skills help. We so need to learn how to frame our messaging. We so need leadership.

Some great advice in this article from Harvard Business Review. How to Thrive When Everything Feels Terrible  

Seek out positive relationships — inside and outside of work.  Research has found that de-energizing relationships — in which one person possesses an enduring, recurring set of negative judgments, feelings, and intentions toward another person — have four to seven times greater impact on an employee’s sense of thriving than energizing, positive relationships. To offset these effects, surround yourself and spend more time with energizers — the people in your life who make you smile and laugh, and lift your spirits.

You may not be able to stop the flow of negativity in your life, especially right now, but you can resist its toxic effects by making smart choices about who and what you surround yourself with, the mindset you adapt, and the information you consume. Not only will you be better off because of these choices — those around you will too.

Author: Lynne Strong

I am a 6th generation farmer who loves surrounding myself with optimistic, courageous people who believe in inclusion, diversity and equality and embrace the power of collaboration. I am the founder of Picture You in Agriculture. Our team design and deliver programs that inspire pride in Australian agriculture and support young people to thrive in business and life