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The enemies of love, part two: Being cynical

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Are you cynical? Cynicism can destroy a relationship if not unchecked.

Cynicism is defined as an attitude of scornful or jaded negativity, especially a general distrust of the integrity or professed motives of others.

I have a friend who is very cynical and says “if you’re not a cynic in today’s world, you’re not paying attention.” Curiously, this guy is so negative that most of his oldest friends don’t want to be in the same room with him anymore.

You weren’t born cynical. When you were a kid, the world was filled with wonder. So what happened to you?

People become cynical after being used or abused by others. People become cynical when life kicks them around. They end up not trusting anyone for fear of another disappointment or heartache.

If you take that kind of attitude into a relationship, you won’t get far. Most emotionally healthy people are not drawn to cynical people. It’s pretty easy to spot someone who is hopelessly negative all the time. All you have to do is listen to them talk. Everyone is out to screw them…everyone is dishonest…everyone is evil.

I can understand that a cynic is trying to protect his heart from painful experiences. But a person with a closed-off heart and mind will have a tough time giving of himself to another person. Intimacy is nearly impossible since you don’t trust anyone not to hurt you. That can get lonely after a while….which will likely make you even more cynical.

Cynicism can spiral downward into depression.

So how can you break the cycle?

Positive self-talk is crucial to ending your cynical attitude. Also, make an effort to find the good attributes of other people, then concentrate on the good things.

The Law of Attraction says that you get more of the things you focus your attention upon. Cynical behavior gets you more disappointment. So change your focus to the positive side of life.

Self talk is vital to maintaining ANY attitude. Most of the unhappiness in our life comes because we listen to ourselves more than we talk to ourselves. If you know you’re cynical and want to change, you’ll have to tell yourself positive words. I recommend you speak to yourself out loud. You brain needs to hear your own words in your own voice. Repeat positive words over and over. In time, you’ll actually begin to feel better. And when you feel better, you are more pleasant to be with.

Emotionally healthy women are not drawn to cynical men. They are drawn to men who can trust and love. Work hard at putting aside cynicism. I don’t mean that you should deny that the events that made you cynical do exist. But how you process it affects your life every day. You get to choose what you think about.

A cynic cannot be a Great Lover. Be a Great Lover.


For more articles by Russ Longcore, go to Russ Longcore’s Blog.

About Adriana Villavicencio

Dr. Adriana Villavicencio is the youngest child of Ecuadorian immigrants. She has moved 29 times in her life, taking her on a journey from California to Bangalore, India, and New York City, where she recently earned a Ph.D. in Education Leadership and works as a Research Associate at New York University. An avid traveler, Adriana has collected experiences in four different continents and 16 different countries. But as a former high school English teacher, some of her fondest memories are those of her brilliant and brilliantly funny students in Brooklyn and Oakland. Adriana has contributed to several publications including the Daily News and, and is a managing editor for the Journal of Equity in Education. She earned a B.A. in English and an M.A. in English Education at Columbia University, and currently serves on the board of Columbia’s Latino Alumni Association (LAACU). She enjoys scary movies with red vines, Sauvignon Blanc, and her Maltese dog, Napoleon.

To learn more about Adriana’s education consulting company, please visit

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author and should not be understood to be shared by Being Latino, Inc.

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