Customer service. It can be a circus, and not in the fun, cotton candy and clowns kind of way. An entire area of Youtube exists to show “customer vs. employee” videos. Eight hour shifts can feel like 8 years, and your patience will be tested daily, if not hourly. Add on sore feet and a sore back and you might explode with the fury of Mt. Vesuvius.

I’ve had to deal with all kinds of people; some of them are nice and some of them make me wish we all got to punch at least one person in life without any consequences. Throughout those long hours I’ve spent at the cash register, I’ve had to find ways to deal with the negative energy that gets thrown at me.

We all experience negative people at some point during the week and that can have a big impact on your happiness and mental health if you allow that energy to affect you. This is easier said than done, so below are some tips to help you.

1. Create an invisible bubble around you (in which negative energy cannot get to you)

Imagine you have a force field around you that negative energy cannot penetrate. No matter what people say to you or rude actions they engage in, that negative energy can never reach you.

Even better, imagine that bubble attracts positive energy, people, and events into your life.

2. How other people treat you is a reflection of them, not you

I often encounter customers who treat me poorly or talk down to me. Unfortunately, many people see customer service employees as someone they can take out their anger or frustration on because we’re forced to be polite. Then, there are people who just aren’t nice.

However, I always remind myself that how they treat me says nothing about who I am, and everything about who they are.

3. Show them absolute kindness and compassion

There are people who may be going through a rough time, or they were just never taught how to be kind and polite (maybe they have never been shown love or kindness themselves.)

Express positive energy towards people who can clearly use it. They might not find it in their heart to show you kindness back, but you might impact them more than you think.

4. Don’t base your happiness on external circumstances or people

Allowing your mood to be affected by other people or circumstances leaves you completely vulnerable and out of control.

Do you allow someone to pick out your clothes in the morning or tell you what to eat?

5. Control your thoughts and feelings

Just because negative people or circumstances surround you doesn’t mean you need to attach yourself to them.

Wake up everyday and choose happiness. Tell yourself that you will be happy regardless of other people or events. Deciding how you’re going to feel comes with a huge sense of freedom.

When you know how to avoid negative energy, you don’t have to fear bad interactions or circumstances affecting your mood during the day.