“Bad company corrupts good character.” 1Co 15:33 NIV
Cold and flu viruses aren’t the only things that are contagious; attitudes are also: “Bad company corrupts good character.” Researchers call it “emotional contagion,” and it affects every aspect of life in the same way a rotten apple corrupts the whole bushel. A relationship expert says: “One negative employee can pollute an entire squad and create a toxic work environment. One negative leader can make work miserable for his or her team. An employee in a bad mood can turn off countless customers. Complaining can act like a cancer and spread through the entire organization, sabotaging the morale and performance of teams with great talent and potential. You’re not just a creation of your culture…you’re creating it every day through your thoughts, beliefs, and actions…you can be negatively or positively contagious. You can be a germ and attack your organization’s immune system, or act like a dose of vitamin C and strengthen it…your emotions impact the world around you.” Paul says, “Put off your old self…be made new in the attitude of your minds” (Eph 4:22-23 NIV). How? By asking God to make you “a different person” (1Sa 10:6 NIV), and changing your attitude from one of negative contagion to one that positively impacts the people you deal with every day. At the same time, be selective about the company you keep. You know from experience the people who drag you down and drain your energy. Pray for them, but minimize the time you spend in their company.