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  • Writer's pictureDavid Stamation



This is a hard one for people because it is so ingrained and second nature that shows up everywhere from private thoughts to public remarks. When used in humor it can be extremely funny; however, most of the time it’s not and usually dampens the mood with co-workers, family, and friends.

Once a person recognizes they have a negative mindset and decides to change it, they are happy to find out it can be changed, they can reprogram their thinking.

What is a Negative Mindset?

Negative mindset, blamer and victim all describe the same type of person. A blamer lets life happen to them, placing their happiness on outside factors, and feel they have no choice. They use phrases and thoughts like: Who can I blame? Or, It won’t work out. A commitment is a feeling rather than a decision. My use of the word ‘victim’ is a victim mentality, not victims of crime or violence.

Life is something they get through, such as: We have teenagers at home; we’re trying to get through that period. You know what that’s like; we’ll get through it, though. In a nutshell people with a negative mindset do not take responsibility for their part and put it on another person or event.

The blamer uses phrases and thoughts to justify their actions or beliefs.

What is the Owner Mentality?

The owner takes personal responsibility for their happiness and well-being. They are in control and have the freedom to choose their response to people and events. Even when faced with a setback, they take something from the experience that shapes a future response or decision. I’m having a difficult time with my teenage son, and we had an incident. How can I use this to create a better relationship with him?

An owner uses their phrases and thoughts to assume responsibility.

The Path Out

People who take the path to reprogram negative thinking share feeling lighter and more in control of their lives. It is a gradual change to adopt an owner mentality and, when they get a taste of the change, they never look back. Whether you have a mild or a more engrained version it can be successfully addressed.

One of my personal observations is people generally will not tell you that you are negative; it’s too hard to explain and leads to a defensive conversation with no positive outcome. Instead, they keep it to themselves and manage the relationship by minimizing interactions with the blamer.

Whether you are aware of having a negative mindset or somebody close to you does, start slowly introducing new language to shift your mindset.

For further reading check out Steve Chandler’s book, Reinventing Yourself (2005).


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