I Went From Negative To Positive: 4 Ways To Turn Negativity Into Motivation

by Joe Oliveto

Success does not come easy. If it did, you wouldn't need articles like this. The truth is, every ambitious undertaking, whether it be building a business or cultivating a relationship, involves setbacks. This is unavoidable.

What you can avoid, however, is one of the key side effects that comes with any unwanted experience or emotion: motivation-drain.

You can let the pitfalls of living a full life beat you up or you can turn around and make something positive out of them. When you do the latter, you're committing to living the best life you possibly can.

Here are four ideas reflecting this idea to keep in mind:

Anger As Energy

Have you ever been so angry that you could punch a wall? Well, it’s not a good idea. You'll hurt yourself (and probably lose your security deposit).

We've all been there, though; so full of rage that we don't know what to do with it. Well, here's a tip: Use that pent-up energy and focus it on something important.

Got fired? Great, get back at your old boss by becoming even more successful in your next career. Going through a breakup?

You could get drunk and irrationally rant, or you could take that anger and use it to build yourself up and become a better version of the person with whom he or she first fell in love.

Unless you're an ultra-Zen monk, you will probably experience anger at some point. What you do with it is up to you.

Getting Even With the Past

We don't all live happy lives, especially when we're too young to be fully independent. Maybe your parents mistreated you. Maybe you were bullied in high school. Maybe you were a child star.

Whatever your background might include, recovering from painful memories is not easy. But, if you decide to try, you’ll get to feel something that will provide you with an endless well of confidence and the sense that you are in control of your own life.

Do you want to forever regret the fact that you weren't the cool kid in high school or do you want to become so successful that when you meet those cool kids at your reunion, you’ll be so much better off than they could ever hope to be?

Every single time you feel discouraged, think back to the people in your past who would be happy to see you fail. And then, think about how angry they'd be to see you succeed.

Sometimes, The Universe Teaches Us Lessons

Change does not come easy. Ingrained habits and ways of being, especially negative habits and ways, don't just go away when we realize they're not good for us.

Oftentimes, it takes some sort of profound life event or powerful outside force to convince us that we need to shape up.

So, when something goes wrong in your life, look for the lesson that the moment is trying to teach you. The universe is random, but only to an extent.

If you got fired, thrown out of your apartment or otherwise screwed over, you may not have totally deserved it, but you can certainly identify what you might have done to make room for the specific consequence. Use this negative experience to bring about something better.

Embrace The Challenge

Being ambitious may seem like it comes from a desire to live as pain-free of an existence as possible. More money, more sex, more fame — whatever you are going after, odds are that it involves feeling good.

But, that's not entirely true. Committing to an endeavor also means committing to the fact that it won't be easy. As we all know, nothing worth doing is easy.

So, while it's easy to glorify people who are perfectly willing to accept what they already have in life, those people are not always the most admirable ones.

Sometimes, they are genuinely happy to live this kind of life. Sometimes, they are too afraid of the challenges that inevitably come with trying anything difficult.

That's probably not the kind of person you want to be. You want to build something meaningful, and you want to know that you're the type of person capable of doing so.

So, whenever a challenge comes along, realize that it’s a reminder that you are not the kind of individual who settles in life. You're only here once, so make the most out of it. If it were easy, we would all be extraordinary.

Photo Courtesy: Victor Norlander