It may seem that having a positive attitude is a universal picture for everyone; but this is not always the case. I have seen many instances where you can be working with a person and everyone who comes in contact with them feels they are negative, toxic or whiney. But yet the person that is in question really does not have a clue of what kind of negative energy they are bringing to the table. As a matter of fact they think that they are the top producers and most positive influences in the workplace. The reasons why they think this way can very; but the following points may shed some light on the fact of how some “problem” people may feel in their own mind that they are helping everyone out when they are really doing the opposite; bringing everyone down.
Some examples of not seeing the real reaction of the people around you:
Fact Finding Freddy: this person is constantly correcting people with “just the facts” even though everyone else has moved on from the conversation or subject 3 months ago, these people can’t seem to let go until every stone has been unearthed; ad-nauseum. They truly don’t understand when they are proud of all the new data that they have researched; other people on the team are working on more current issues and had already resolved the old ones.
Whining Wilma: Sometimes, people vent and sometimes people whine. The difference is usually what kind of action is this person willing to take in order to solve problems? No action and more whining means this is not just venting, it is usually is procrastination or distracting the attention away from their own laziness and feeling that they are contributing by “keeping it real”.
Overzealous Owen: Always pumped and primed for the next meeting or sale or presentation this person can wear out the best of us. The problem isn’t that you want this person to stop being so positive it is that the barometer that they use is broken and they are way over the top in one area when they need to be paying attention to 5 other areas also; this usually ends in burn out for them and their coworkers. It can be another case of lingering too long or overstating the obvious.
Chicken Little: There is always a catastrophe waiting to happen; and the worst part about this personality is that they feel they were put on this earth to warn us all of every impending doom. They operate in a no risk, no movement realm and will stay stagnated as long as they possibly can and they feel they are saving everyone from pure ruins.
These are just a few examples I have seen, as I am sure you can add your own. The point is that it is not always as clear cut and easy to see when you or someone else is “leaking negative toxins” in your environment. So, the next time you encounter these behaviors in yourself or others; you may want to take a different approach to solving or ridding anyone of these insidious attitudes.