Don’t Be a Downer

Don’t Be a Downer In the early 2000s, Saturday Night Live ran a sketch starring Rachel Dratch as “Debbie Downer”. Each sketch basically had the same arrangement: a collection of people were gathered together for a fun, special occasion, such as going to Disney World, a Thanksgiving dinner, a wedding reception, etc. While everyone else is working to have a good time, Debbie still manages to take every positive thing going on and find the negative in it. It wears very thin, very quickly with everyone else. By the end of the sketch, they all get up and leave her by herself. Even though the skits are funny, they do highlight that naturally energy draining and repelling effect of a negative person on a group. If you have never seen a Debbie Downer sketch, you can check these out to see what I am talking about—and to make sure you do not act like this.. They are hilarious, but illustrate a real social problem:

Origin of the Debbie Downer sketch—an interview with Rachel Dratch:

The Problem with Being Negative:

There are many reasons why a person can focus so much on the negative. Perhaps they had a childhood with abuse or neglect or other forms of trauma. Maybe they are naturally prone to depression or anxiety physically, which can come out as negativity. Whatever the origins, some people tend to focus on the negative—both inside themselves and verbally with others. The effect is that positive energy is drained out of the room, the mood dampens, and people become annoyed. “Commiserating” (collectively being miserable together) creates a repelling experience that people will soon tire of and want to get away from. The net social effect of being negative are fewer friends and a smaller pool of people to date. Don’t be THAT person.

Tips to Not Be a Downer:

*Affirmations: create a long list of positive and true things about yourself and life in general. Add to it regularly. Then read these statements out loud once a day. Remember: that which we focus on, we amplify. Affirmations are a good, useful focus.

*Catch yourself: pay much more attention to both the thoughts in your mind and the words you use with other people. When you catch yourself naturally drifting towards the negative, steer it back over towards something positive. Have self-awareness and correct your course as necessary.

*Expose yourself to positive materials often: find uplifting books, audios, or videos to review regularly. The positivity in these materials can be inspirational, comedy, or any other form of self help that leaves you uplifted, more light hearted, and in a better mood. Be much more careful with what you spend your time focusing on. It will all have an affect on you.

*Be around positive people: inasmuch as reasonably possible, surround yourself with positive, optimistic people. Unlike Debbie Downer, add to the positivity of others as much as possible. And when certain family members, coworkers, or church members are negative, either try to turn them around to a positive focus or limit your time with them. Set sound boundaries to limit their influence on you.

*Practice cognitive therapy: a type of therapy that helps you turn negativity into positivity is called “cognitive therapy”. Two good cognitive therapy self-help workbooks include Mind Over Mood by Dennis Greenberger and Christine Padesky, as well as The Feeling Good Handbook by David Burns. Practice these exercises regularly.

*Make a commitment: make a decision inside to choose to be more positive. You may wish to even write it down and sign it, or make a video when you announce this to yourself. Then, regularly remind yourself of this commitment to stay positive. Also, you might choose to let others know of this commitment you have made and that they can, as needed, give you gentle reminders to get back on track. If you are used to being negative, making a commitment to be more positive will be an important element of your improvement. Otherwise, it can be easy to just slide back into old ways.

*Listen to some hypnosis at night. Before bed, listen to hypnosis audios to lessen negativity and embrace a more positive, optimistic outlook. Here are 2 good hypnosis packs from you may wish to invest in:

*Take some supplements to boost your mood. It’s easier to be more positive and less negative when you are physically and emotionally feeling better, more energetic, and more perky. Along with healthy eating and regular exercise, you may wish to add some mood boosting supplements. Here are three that I know of that you may wish to check out:

Final Thoughts:

Don’t be a downer. It is not only unattractive and repelling socially, but it is not fun to live that way. Follow the ideas from this article and work to drop the negativity. Learn to be more positive and optimistic. You will be happier, more attractive, and enjoy life more. The opposite sex will notice. And remember that “…neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord.”—1 Corinthians 11:11.

Dr. G
P.S. If you can questions, comments, or a future article request for me, feel free to contact me at

2021-05-14 Randy Gilchrist Dating, Communication

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About the author

Hello, my name is Dr. Randy Gilchrist (aka "Dr. G"). I am a licensed clinical psychologist, a licensed marriage & family therapist, and a certified hypnotherapist in private practice in Roseville, CA (, practicing since 1997. Also, I am happily married in the temple (Manti) since 1996 and have 4 sons. I am a volunteer writer and contributor to LDS Dimension. I use my training, education, and experience to share insights with LDS Dimension on all things of interest to the LDS dating community. Please read my articles and columns on this site to assist you in your online dating journey. Also, to be considered for an answer in a future Q and A column, please email me your dating/relationship oriented questions to Finally, I also offer a powerful, effective worldwide custom hypnosis recording service just for LDS Dimension members for weight loss, pornography, and many other issues of concern to those in the LDS dating community (please learn more now at; email me questions to