We’ve all encountered toxic people in our lives. These are people who either radiate negativity, drain your energy, are selfish, or make you feel like a lesser person. Toxic people can be anyone from family members to colleagues at work. This does not necessarily mean that they are bad people, but it does mean that they are contributing negatively to your well-being. How, you ask? Well, after spending time with toxic people you will notice that you will NOT feel happy or satisfied with your time, energy, and even mental state. Their negativity, narcissism, or bad influence will rub off on you so you end up carrying the effects of your time together, and it doesn’t feel good.
You may start second guessing or doubting yourself and your abilities if this person puts their 2 cents in. You may start being more self-conscious about something because they are body shaming or being low-key (or straight up) racist/sexist/prejudiced/envious. Maybe you’ve encountered the toxic person that wants to talk about themselves and their lives for 98% of the time, and then briefly ask about your life before cutting you off and taking the opportunity to shift back to their own issues. Finally, there are the toxic people who encourage you to partake in bad habits and make poor decisions. This same person may be ultra toxic if they don’t support you with your goals and aspirations. In a nutshell, toxic people are people who add zero value to your life. How do you even deal with toxic people in a healthy and progressive way though? Let’s find out.
How Do You Deal With Toxic People?
Communication is Key!
In any relationship, communication is key. If you never bring it up, how do you expect the dynamic of the relationship to change in any way? That is why a great place to start is through conversation. Pull that person aside and tell them how you feel and the reasons why you feel that way. Remember, you don’t want to start an altercation, but you do want to get your concern across in the most comfortable and effective way.
If the person is willing to hear you out, you are already on the right track to making progress. If they are not, let them know how important this conversation is to you and how it will help your relationship with them. Sometimes you may encounter a person who gets very defensive. If that is the case, try to assure them that you are coming from a genuine place and you do not want to upset them. If need be change the tone and come back to the conversation once the person cools down. You do not want to burn bridges, but you do want to have a healthier relationship with that person. Believe it or not, some of these toxic people may actually take what you said into consideration…at least around you. I have seen first hand how they become more mindful of their actions and those people who respect and value you will make changes to their behavior even if it is minimal. Baby steps on their behalf shows that they are willing to keep the relationship with you. Don’t forget to thank them and tell them how much you appreciate the change.
Minimizing Your Time and Interaction
After you have voiced your concerns with the person, make sure to see if there is any change in their interactions with you. If there is no change, you may want to consider cutting the amount of time and interaction you spend/have with them. When you distance yourself from a toxic person you will see that you may feel more balanced, like a weight has been lifted from your shoulders. Use the time away from that person to keep tabs on your energy levels and feelings. Do you feel less negative, less drained, or less likely to make bad or unhealthy choices? If so, you know that you have made the correct decision to stray away from that toxic relationship.
Cut Off the Relationship
When you’ve exhausted all of your options and you see that the toxic person does not add any value to YOUR life, it is completely okay to cut that person out. When you come across toxic people who do not support your goals and try to sabotage your plans by encouraging bad and unhealthy behaviors and choices, you need to put yourself first and cut that person out of your life. A toxic person may also continuously do or say things to make you feel uncomfortable and negative. Maybe they are body shaming you and others, saying racist, xenophobic, and prejudiced statements, or simply making you feel like you’re their doormat. People like this also need to be cut off because they are affecting your sense of worth. These types of toxic people do not add any value to your life nor do they value you as a person. You definitely do not need people like that in your life. YOU ARE WORTH MORE THAN THAT!
I hope this information benefits you! Remember, you must put yourself and your interests first. If someone is making you feel less than your best, they are not someone you should keep around. Don’t feel obligated, pressured, or shamed to keep someone who does not value you. You do you friends, and never forget that you are awesome!