Jake Tucker here. I’m the lead graphic artist at The EDGY Empire. Episode 6 of The EDGY Perspective TV show on avoiding negativity got me thinking about my own personal experience being trapped with negativity. Dan asked if I would share my thoughts. Let’s jump in.
My mother is the most pessimistic person I’ve ever encountered in life.
Don’t get me wrong, all of her worrying and “what-if” scenarios and “realistic” views have shaped me into a careful, calculated person — I’ve learned to weigh pros and cons and to look for obvious pitfalls.
But her negative outlook on life poisoned me. It controlled me.
For years it wrecked my life. Finally I woke up one morning and realized life is too short to not be happy.
I developed the need to live. The will to love.
And more importantly, I began to appreciate the positive, bright and happy side of life.
In the years since I moved away from home, I’ve grown up. I’ve failed. I’ve loved. I’ve hurt—and I’ve healed. But one thing stays the same: I want to be positive in everything I do.
- I know that if I am negative, I won’t accomplish anything.
- I know that if I fail, there is always something to be learned.
Those two lessons drive me.
I can always move forward and try again.
It took me awhile but I no longer look at being raised in a negative, “you can’t” environment as a dark depressing time in my life that I can’t escape. Those years were the window from which I saw the light of a happier, more successful life.
Every day I strive for that life. I make things happen — and I do it on my terms.
If someone says I can’t do something. I do it.
Or at least I try — and then try more. Until I do it.
There is always something to gain from trying more.
Here is the most important lesson I learned:
If you have people in your life that are negative, avoid them. Get away — even if it means moving away. You can’t beat them.
They feed on the inevitable failure of others. They see the worst in the world and refuse to find joy in the successes of others.
In the 1992 Olympics, Derek Redmond was the heavy favorite to win the 400m race—but tore his hamstring a mere 100m off the line. If you haven’t seen that moment, it’s inspiring. While he’s crying out in pain, his father races onto the track and helped carry him across the finish line.
Are you the type of person who would boo and trash talk him?
Or would you be on the edge of your seat, watching as something amazing takes place right in front of your eyes?
What if Derek had said “I’m done. I can’t”? What if his father told him, “This is your fault; you’re a failure”? He never would have crossed the finish line. They showed the attitude of high performers — resolve and dedication, a positive outlook on a devastating occurrence at arguably the worst possible moment in time for them.
Apply that to your life. If you lose a girlfriend, ruin a business deal, wreck your car, or even scuff up your new wingtips, think, “do I want people rubbing this failure in my face?” So don’t make other people feel that way. Negativity never wins the race.
Grab an arm. Lift someone up. Carry them to the finish line.
You never know when you might need the favor returned.
Dan here. Jake’s story sounds a lot like the messages many of you send me. If you feel stuck — surrounded by people who drag you down — you have to make the hard choice like Jake did to get away, even it means you’re without a home for awhile. Jake’s a huge winner. And we’re winning every day he leads creative vision for us at The EDGY Empire.