Avoid Cynics — They Will Hinder Your Career Success

In my latest career success coach book Success Tweets I suggest surrounding yourself with positive people and avoiding negative people.  Tweet 49 says…

“Surround yourself with positive people.  Hold them close.  They will give you energy and help you create the career success you deserve.” 

Tweet 50 says…

“Jettison the negative people in your life.  They are energy black holes.  They will suck you dry; but only if you let them.”

The other day I saw a tweet on line that reminded me of one of the kinds of negative people you need to avoid if you want to become a career success – cynics.  The tweet said, “We are born naked, wet and hungry.  Then things get worse.” 

I laughed at first.  Then I realized I don’t believe that.  Sure, we are born naked, wet and hungry.  But very quickly someone dries us off, wraps us in a blanket and takes us to our mother for feeding.  In other words, it gets better.  As an optimist, I believe it always gets better, or at least has the potential for getting better. 

The tweet is very cynical.  It also demonstrates the problem with cynics.  They are negative people in disguise.  They are also dangerous, because they are seductive.  Cynics always have something witty to say – usually others’ shortcomings. 

At first, cynics seem to be funny and amusing.  But spend time with them, and you’ll find that they have little joy in life except in pointing out and reveling in others’ problems and failures – just like the tweet.

Ambrose Bierce may well be the world’s biggest cynics.  I often see quotes on line attributed to him.  In the early 20th century, he published a book called The Devil’s Dictionary.  Even I admit that some of his definitions are pretty funny.  However, I get tired and frustrated after reading more than one or two.  Here are a couple of quotes from The Devil’s Dictionary…

“Optimism:  The doctrine that everything is beautiful, including what is ugly, everything good, especially the bad, and everything right that is wrong… It is hereditary, but fortunately not contagious.”

“Calamities: Two kinds — misfortunes to ourselves, and good fortune to others.”

No wonder ole’ Ambrose was called “Bitter Bierce” by his contemporaries.  First he bashes optimism, then he suggests that human beings see the good fortune of others as a personal calamity — not great life and career success advice in my book.

Here are a couple of other entries in The Devil’s Dictionary

“Politeness: The most acceptable hypocrisy.” 

“Perseverance: A lowly virtue whereby mediocrity achieves an inglorious success.”

Do you know any people like Ambrose Bierce?  If you do, my best career advice is to hold them at arm’s length.  While you may find them to be witty and entertaining at first, they will drag you down in the long run.  They will not help you create the life and career success you want and deserve. 

if you read this blog with any regularity you know that I am a big fan of The Optimist Creed.  I have it hanging in my office.  If you want a copy to hang in your office, go to https://budbilanich.com/optimist

Point 6 of The Optimist Creed says…

“Promise yourself to be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are of your own.”

This is 180 degrees from what Ambrose has to say.  Successful, self confident people aren’t jealous or upset by the career success of others.  They are genuinely pleased when they see others succeed.  They see the career success of others as an inspiration.  They use it to motivate themselves to achieve bigger and better career success

Negative people choose to see others’ career success as a personal affront.  Cynical people usually have something derogatorily witty to say about others’ life and career success. Take it from a career success coach, these kinds of people will not help you create the life and career success you want and deserve.  In fact, they’ll take you in the opposite direction.

The common sense career success coach point here is simple.  Surround yourself with positive people to build your career success.  Avoid negative people.  Especially avoid cynical people.  Don’t get seduced by cynics’ wit and humor.  It is debilitating in the long run.  Choose to hang around with upbeat, positive people.  You’ll be glad you did, and you’ll put yourself on the road to career success.

That’s my take on cynics and career success.  What’s yours?  Please take a few minutes to share your thoughts with us in a comment.  As always, thanks for reading.


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