We’ve all been there I think. You have such wonderful, joyus news. Or you might just be in a super happy mood. And then here come the jabs, the comments, all trying to turn your beautiful sunny day parade into a rain fest with the attempt of making you want to go home and climb under the covers on such a gloomy day. So many people in the world love raining on people’s parades, some do it on purpose, some don’t. Regardless, there is a way to fight off the rainy attempts, unlike real weather- so you can enjoy your sunshiny day. I have had my fair share of rain clouds pop up during my pregnancy and I have been able to figure out how to avoid them, mostly because I have a low tolerance for rainy day people as it is, but also because when you have such a happy thing going for you in life- you don’t have the time for rainy days.
Let’s look at these steps as if we were building one big umbrella. Read them. Store them in your mind for the next time a rain cloud seems to be heading your way. And enjoy your happiness.
Step 1- Try and find reasoning: Do you think there is a certain reason why this person is trying to bring you down? Remember- misery loves company. Are they going through a tough time? Do they feel threatened by your happiness? Do they have a jealously issue? Bad day? Sometimes the answer isn’t as clear to see as others. Sometimes the answer is simply that the person is just a less than grand person. But if you can pop yourself into their shoes for a minute (not literally guys) and think about what may be going on, you might get a sense of why they may be acting bitter. Regardless of their reasoning, it’s not cool to bring others down. But when you can find the reasoning- it becomes a little less personal of a situation and you can turn your focus to the next steps to building your umbrella.
Step 2- Weigh their importance: This is important for step #3. When someone is trying to bring you down, weigh out the importance that they play in your life. According to how important they are will depend on the solution you go after. For example, a solution to your mother trying to rain on your parade would be handled much different than if it was someone you barely even make contact with. If you are in constant contact with someone, problems need solving in a more direct manner. And if it was someone you aren’t that close to you can handle it in a more indirect manner.
Step 3- Finding a solution: Like I said above, it all comes down to how important this person is in your life.
If it’s your mom, spouse, best friend,etc– When they try to rain on your parade it’s going to be a little more in depth to find a solution as it becomes harder to just ignore. It will usually end in a conversation or a simple sentence, letting them know that “I understand they are having a bad day but that kind of hurt my feelings” or you can ask about their day and explain they seemed a little off/different and so you wanted to know how you could help. Sometimes they’ll open up, sometimes they’ll apologize, sometimes they won’t. The important part is to not get heated yourself and calmly move through what’s going on without allowing them to create one giant rain storm on your head. I preach communication in healthy relationships. When you ignore problems they linger and get bigger, and bigger. So if the person plays an important role in your life, have a friendly and caring conversation, keeping #1 in mind so you can see where they are coming from but also protecting your happiness.
If it’s someone you are “stuck” with but aren’t close with: It’s tough when you are stuck being with a person in your life that loves to rain on your parade. Such as a coworker or distant family member. This isn’t a situation where an either direct or indirect response comes to play. It can be either. Obviously with these people, it’s best to keep the peace. But not at the expense of your pretty little umbrella. Thankfully there is usually a solution in there somewhere special to the circumstances. For example, a snappy coworker is someone you have to see daily. So this is going to require a more direct response as bitterness in the workplace will just lead to resentment and for you to hate your job. Trust me, I have been there. You don’t want to go along with your everyday life extra dreading work because you have issues with a coworker. I would look at the close family solution with this one except perhaps not be so blunt about obvious issues they may be having unless it’s needed. Politely let them know you are sorry if something happened in their day but that it kind of bugged you when they snapped at you but again- you are sorry if their day isn’t going so great and you will help if you can. If the coworker is usually peaches and cream but is having a horrible day sometimes it’s easier to just read step number one and go on to the next day. But if it’s a repeat offense or someone that isn’t exactly friendly to begin with, take the conversation route. And then you have distant family, like a cousin you may talk to once or twice a year. Which this situation, if they just aren’t being very friendly- ignore them. Let them go on with their life. If they make a rude gesture or do something obviously crappy, go the direct route with the same conversation you just had with your coworker. Don’t let someone run over you, but pick your battles. If they are just grumpy, let them live in grumpyville and enjoy your sunshiney day from across the room or where ever you may be. If they don’t feel like chatting or seem to be ignoring you, that can be their issue because even though you are stuck with them- you won’t be dealing with their less than awesome persona everyday. But again, if they are obviously offensive directly to you- pull out the “I’m sorry but…” card.
People you don’t know/don’t see/ aren’t stuck with- Such as facebook friends, a lady at your mom’s work, someone you really don’t have to handle/see if you don’t feel like it, don’t even waste a breath on them unless they again- directly attack you. There is a lovely feature on Facebook where you can unfollow a person. If they aren’t important but try and rain on you- hit that unfollow button and go on with life. Or you can even unfriend them- just be prepared for a “why?” Sometimes a why is worth it though. Pretty much the philosophy here is, if you aren’t close to them- then you don’t have to tolerate them. Don’t even take a second to let the rain cloud even come in your distance. Leave those that live in grumpyville in grumpyville and remind yourself of step 1. Sometimes even those people you are stuck with, you can apply the same methods too. You can always unfollow that distant cousin.
Step 4- Move on: This is the fun part, sometimes it takes work but it’s worth it. Just move on from the situation. If your mom had a crappy day and you sorted it out with the conversation, move on. Don’t think about it too much beyond then. Dwelling on things leads to misery and your sunshine will slowly disappear to be followed by little rain droplets. If you unfollowed the person after they were being snide on Facebook, forget about them and focus on those that do love you. if your coworker apologized, don’t be angry the next day. Enjoy the day. Solve the problem, and then move on from it. Or else you’ll create your own rain cloud, and that’s the worst.
Note: If someone continues to rain and rain and rain on your parade. It may be time to think about putting some distance between you and that person. Look at your options and see what you can do to stay away from that person as much as possible/as long as you need. NO ONE should have to deal with people always putting a damper on their life.
We all have a beautiful life. We all have the right to happiness and sunshine filled days. Some will be rainy, but you don’t have to let people bring you the rain. Sometimes they will and you’ll have issues with the above steps- but keep trying anyways. Grudges, rain storms, unhealthy forced relationships, they all equal hurricanes when they build and build. Look out for your happiness and protect it with everything, because you deserve it.