Do you have Toxic People in your life?

Nov 18, 2016 | Turning 60 and Beyond | 0 comments

Do you have people in your life that are annoying, difficult or otherwise unpleasant. There’s a name for that—they are actually toxic people. They may be a friend, partner or relative but in some way they are messing with your life. They are exhausting, they take all your time and energy, they bring you down and cause much anxiety.

Not healthy!! It’s important in life to surround yourself with people who make you feel like a better person and let go of those who don’t. Here are eight ways to recognize a toxic friend or person in your life.

  1. They have a Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde personality. Warm, friendly, fun-loving when all is going their way but just look out and take cover if something doesn’t go as they planned.
  2. They are selfish. They have no concern for your feelings and feel no need to take them into consideration.
  3. They need to be right all the time. They are right even when they are not. They rarely (if ever) admit when they’ve messed up or miscalculated or misspoke.
  4. Everything in their life is dramatic. They are always the victim. They thrive on drama and will dwell ad nauseum on any negative experience in their life cementing their victimhood.
  5. They are just not nice. They may be lovely and charming to you. But, the clearest way to get a sense of someone’s real character is to watch how they treat others, especially people who aren’t useful to them. Be careful, someday it could be you.
  6. They discredit your dreams and/or abilities. Life is an ongoing journey, and what you achieve comes from what you expect to achieve and what you work to achieve. They don’t understand this.
  7. They are excessively envious of what you have. They have the notion that if they copy everything you do it will make them better. It’s not that they admire you—it’s about them not liking themselves.
  8. They are negative. They can find no one or nothing in their life to be happy about. It’s like someone peed in their cornflakes every morning of their dreadful lives. They are so often critical about everything around them.

With any discussion of toxic people, it’s important to understand that you can’t change a person. So it’s best to stop trying and save your energy for something easier—like world peace. It’s up to you to make the changes. When you do something differently, things can’t help but change for you. If it’s not the people in your radar, it will be their impact on you.

So what can you do with these toxic people. If you can determine whether this “friend” is capable of having a rational conversation about the relationship then you can have that conversation with them.

But if you feel they don’t have the capacity for self-reflection which in most cases is the truth, it may be better to avoid the conversation and just distance yourself from them.

Here’s a few things to keep in mind to help you through the process.

  1. Remember why you are doing this. Be empowered by your motives.
  2. Be clear about boundaries.
  3. You don’t have to help them through every crisis.
  4. You don’t need to explain yourself.
  5. Don’t judge them.
  6. Choose your battles wisely.
  7. Don’t be the victim.
  8. Focus on the solution, rather than the problem.
  9. Surround yourself with people who give you as much as you give them in return.
  10. Forgive them, but don’t forget.

Cutting people out of your life is one of the most challenging things you can do, but sometimes it just needs to be done. It is also one of the most liberating and life changing decisions you will ever make. Most importantly cutting toxic people from your live gives a big message. You’re saying to yourself “ I am worthy, I have value and I am important. Prioritizing your own happiness over someone’s else’s disfunction is the most important thing you can do for yourself.

I know first hand it is very difficult thing to do. At first you question yourself. “Did I really have to?” You know the answer, but it doesn’t make it any easier. You will miss them for a while and you may be unhappy with the choice you made for a time. But in the end you will realize that you are a better person for not having them in my life.