Fighting Cynicism As A Meeting Professional

Cynicism is my whiskey

Cynicism is contagious!

So is hope!

Which do you display the most? Cynicism or hope? And if you work with others that are true cynics, do NOT forward this post to them. It will just make matters worse.

Cynicism Is A Luxury You Can’t Afford

Cynicism is an ugly lavishness that you don’t need. It is an indulgent-self-serving extravagance that is dreadfully obnoxious and unattractive.

Cynicism can derail a career quickly. It can rot a meeting the way termites rot a house. It can suck the life out of you in seconds and rob you of hope. Cynicism can spread like a wildfire and create a conference mental crisis of epic proportions. It is something you should avoid at all costs!

Cynicism is a luxury you can’t afford.

Nine Ways To Tell If You Are On The Verge Of A Cynic Breakdown

Here are nine ways to tell if you are on the verge of losing all hope as you embrace cynicism.

  1. You check your watch first thing in the morning when you arrive at work to see how much longer you have to wait until you can go home.
  2. You sigh and grunt when you have to do even the smallest task such as answer the phone or respond to an email.
  3. Your conference logistics, room sets, f&b, deadlines, etc., are more important than those coming to your meeting.
  4. You refuse to pivot and make changes as needed. Instead you hold your ground to the rules you’ve established enforcing them with an iron fist.
  5. During the conference, you stay in the show office behind closed doors so you don’t have to deal with any people.
  6. You are convinced that no matter what you do or say, nothing works with these attendees, speakers and exhibitors as they won’t follow your rules.
  7. Another day, another dollar, another ho-hum moment, everything feels the same.
  8. You can’t understand why your employer, supervisor as well as your family are not making your life better.
  9. You’ve lost your passion and love for your job. You also don’t like to learn anything new because it already feels overwhelming.

Overcoming Cynicism

According to the Oxford Dictionary, cynicism is

a disposition to disbelieve in the sincerity or goodness of human motives and actions…

Cynicism is the presence of negativity. There are a lot of reasons why many of us revert to cynicism from it being our defense mechanism to it being a way to keep from opening up to others to being a habit. Cynics always choose to doubt, disbelieve and discredit, even if there is not a logical reason to do.

In order to overcome cynicism, we have to ask ourselves a few basic questions:

  • When did cynicism become my typical M.O.?
  • Why do I continue to embrace cynicism?
  • What motivation am I getting from being a cynic?

Once we’ve done that, then we can consider steps to moving from cynicism to hope.

  1. Admit we have a problem with cynicism.
  2. Embrace mindfulness and consider every time we have a cynical thought.
  3. Realize that most cynics have become habitual with their cynicism. Begin to challenge every cynical thought with logic.
    Does being a cynic make others respect me?
    Does living a cynical life help me grow?
    Does this specific cynical thought make me happy?
  4. Make a choice to reduce cynicism and instead embrace hope.
  5. Force yourself to find one good thing about every person you meet.
  6. Choose to look at a person’s positive qualities instead of their negative ones.

With some work, patience and intentionality, we can turn cynicism into hope and positivity. There is hope for us yet!

When is being a cynic a positive thing? What results do most cynics receive from their cynicism?

One Response to Fighting Cynicism As A Meeting Professional
  1. Deborah Oster Pannell
    April 29, 2013 | 12:16 pm

    Jeff.
    I love this post more than anything I’ve read so far today (you set the bar pretty high)… :)
    Most of all, I think cynicism is BORING.
    Great recovery program, BTW!
    :)
    D

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