people want to connect with people who are interesting and positive, who are an asset rather than a burden. Negativity, manifested in a propensity to criticise and complain, serves as one of the strongest signals that you’re likely to be the latter.

  • negativity suggests undesirable personality traits. Complainers and moaners are perceived as being more likely to be:
    • pessimistic, self absorbed, inflexible
    • prone to victim mindset and catastrophisation
    • high maintenance – takers rather than givers
  • complainers make the world seem a darker place
  • moaning is boring – because it is generally all about oneself and we all have our own catalogue of peeves
  • negativity is contagious – people don’t want to catch it

Cast your mind back over the last few days. What has been the balance in your conversations between positivity and negativity? How often have you focused on the problem and sought to attribute blame versus being proactive and solution focused? How often have you expressed gratitude or recognised your good fortune as opposed to finding fault and listing what could be better? How often have you used the word ‘but’?