Doug and Debbie Downers

Doug and Debbie Downers by Dr. Randy Gilchrist, LDS Psychologist (FREE LDS online dating site)

If you are single, looking to date, in a relationship, engaged, or married, there is one piece of advice I would like to give to help you hopefully attract and keep a great partner and spouse in your life. This is, be careful and watch to minimize your level of negativity. Negative comments and attitudes towards yourself, others, and life in general is draining, depressing, and an overall downer. Such negative energy generally repels others and reinforces a person's loneliness and negative attitude towards others."Doug and Debbie Downers" is a name for people exhibiting negative attitudes on a regular enough basis that this becomes what comes to people's mind when thinking of these particular individuals: their pronounced negativity.

Why We Get Negative

"But…but…but…I've had some really bad/hard/tragic things happen in my life, and I have a right to feel this way. It's understandable." Rationalizing one's negativity is often when keeps us that way, so I don't recommend it. But what leads us towards being so negative in the first place? There are a few possibilities that come to mind. One is that we may have had direct relatives who suffered from depression and other negative factors in their life, so for some, depression is a combination of genetics and early life role modeling. Growing up and after we become adults, we often go through additional challenges or even traumatic events that can scar us and make us pessimistic, even cynical. Examples could include the results of verbal abuse, bullying, exclusion, and other harsh treatment. Failures leading to negativity afterwards may include relationship breakups, school failures, work failures, etc. It can be almost like we can get to where we don't want to be optimistic and see the positive anymore because we don't want to risk being let down and disappointed once again. So, assuming the worst from the get go can at least help us to not be let down when things don't work out again. The problem is, assuming the worst like this also minimizes your chance for happiness and enjoyment in life, and it repels others away.

How to Become More Positive and Optimistic

So, if you find that you have become a quite negative person and you want to change, there are some things you can do. First, please remember that being positive and optimistic can be thought of as a skill and a choice, versus a rigid personality someone is stuck with. Second, choose and practice thinking positive thoughts in every opportunity you can. Be aware. You can write out a list of positive true short affirmation statements and rehearse and add to them regularly. Tell yourself positive true things out loud looking into your eyes in the mirror as well. Third, minimize spending time around highly negative people and maximize being with and around positive people. This can include friends, family members, coworkers, acquaintances, and strangers. Fourth and finally, be careful what media you watch/read/listen to. Whether it be social media, TV shows, books, online articles, movies, magazines, etc., be careful to filter out as many negative media outlets as possible, while also trying to search out and add as many positive media as you can. Be picky.

Final Thoughts

Remember, nothing positive ever comes from a negative attitude. Negativity precedes failure and frustration. The more positive, hopeful, and optimistic you can be, the better the outcomes. This is called a positive self-fulfilling prophesy. That which you focus on, you amplify. Be careful to focus on and amplify that which uplifts, energizes, and promotes and "can do" attitude. Be careful to minimize and avoid the opposite: that which is a downer, drains, and leads you to think you can't be who you want to be or do what you want to do. There is an old saying: "if it is to be, it's up to me". That statement is true most of the time across most situations. It is important that you are proactive and that you are willing to approach life accordingly. Remember that the world itself is largely a busy, neutral place. If it is to be positive as you interact with the world, you will have to choose to do so. You will need to be the difference maker.

As you are more positive, energetic, and attractive, you will then give yourself the best chance possible to find, attract, and keep another healthy, positive partner with similar things to offer. You can do this. Because "…neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord" (1 Corinthians 11:11).

Dr. G
**To readers: to submit a question to Dr. G for a future Q and A column, please send your questions to Also, please register for a free account at for access to previous and future Dr. G articles.

2016-12-18 Randy Gilchrist Dating, Healthy relationships, Unhealthy relationships, 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