Before introducing you to Joy, I would like to reflect on my experience with the exercise from last week.
I ended last weeks blog with a challenging exercise. I did the exercise a long time ago but decided to do it again since I was going to write about it. I quickly realized that it gave me a refresher of what people I should avoid interacting with. Now, this is how I went about the exercise: I made two columns which represented a positive and a negative side of how people affect me. I wrote down the names of everyone who I interacted with and found myself genuinely thinking about how I felt after the conversation. (I wrote it all down in my phone with short comments next to the persons name with an explanation to on why they made me feel better/worse).
In sum, the exercise was about finding people who were either energy vampires or more like Joy from the Energy Bus, which is the topic of this week. Backtrack, I read The Energy Bus my last year in college and decided that it might be very helpful when talking about creating the environment you want to be in. Sometimes there is not an option of moving away from an unhealthy environment; however there is a way of bettering the environment that you are in and trying to make the best out of the situation.
In short, The Energy Bus is about a bussdriver called Joy, who is an energetic, optimistic, irresistible woman with hope and George who is introduced as the energy vampire. An energy vampire is a person who tries to bring your positive energy down and who boosts their energy by bringing you to mental exhaustion.
Here are the six different types of energy vampires:
- The Victim or Martyr Vampire, a person who continually blames, manipulates and emotionally blackmails others because of their self esteem. Avoid by getting involved in their self-pity or even interacting with them.
- The Narcissist Vampire, a person who will always expect others to put them first, they will manipulate you until they get the way they want it and then stab you in the back. Avoid by not interacting with them but if that is impossible explain how your request can satisfy their needs as well, play their game in a smart way 😉
- The Dominator Vampire, a person who wants to feel superior just like the “alpha” female/male among animals. Very loud, and have rigid believes, often racist or sexist. Avoid by limiting contact and teaching them to agree to disagree.
- The Melodramatic Vampire, a person who thrives to create problems and drama everywhere they are. They feed off of negativity especially emotions like anger. Avoid by figuring out their triggers and not triggering them or try to cut them out of your life completely.
- The Judgmental Vampire, a person who loves to pick on other people and make them feel small, pathetic or ashamed because of their insecurities. Avoid by cutting contact and by NOT getting defensive because then they win. Be balanced, keep your head high and be nice back, that will entirely throw them off.
- The Innocent Vampire, a person who always needs help and always wants you to take care of them. Remember, be nice and help those you care about but let those who are completely capable of doing things themselves do it themselves. You will not have any energy left if you constantly help others with their tasks. Avoid by loving yourself first and then teaching them to develop their own skills and strength.
Back to Joy, who is also the driver of the Energy Bus which George has to take because of the circumstances in his life. George is a very frustrating and extremely negative person whose wife, Sarah, is getting sick of. Sarah can not deal with his negativity even though she loves him so dearly. There are a few more characters in the story but it is ultimately Joy who in the end helps George save his marriage, and become the positive leader that everyone loves. This to show that ones attitude can affect literally everything in life. From moods to relationships and ultimately the way a company can develop into a very successful business.
Here are the 10 golden rules talked about in the book which I highly recommend writing down and following if wanting to successfully build a positive character and winning team:
- You’re the Driver of YOUR Bus
- Desire, Vision, and Focus moves Your Bus
- Fuel Your Ride
- Invite People on Your Bus
- Don’t Waste Your Energy
- No Energy Vampires Allowed
- Enthusiasm Attracts More Passengers
- Love Your Passengers
- Drive with Purpose
- Have Fun and Enjoy the Ride
Lastly, it is incredible how much ones attitude can change the environment to the better or worse; therefore, be the one who is positive and driven. If you start by creating a positive and healthy environment around yourself, other people will follow. The author of the book Jon Gordon said “positive energy is much like a muscle. The more you use it, the stronger it gets. The stronger it gets, the more powerful you become. The more you focus on positive energy, the more it becomes your natural state.” Hope I did not spoil too much of the book and that it is still in your interest to read/listen to it 🙂 and after reading it, be Joy for the rest of your life 😉