We all see them, but do we all recognize them? There is something weird about them, they are always negative and they tend to suck energy out of you.
I spend two long years abroad and after coming back I was so happy to see my friends and family again. One of my girlfriends used to have the face of sunshine and happiness. She still has the most stunning smile, but she used to bring positive energy with that smile wherever she goes. After two years, she was a different person. She wasn’t satisfied where she was in her life. In the meantime, she dropout from college (for the second time), she was almost 30, not married and eager to get married and to have babies soon as possible. Who was this person? She would always find herself in a bad relationships and she saw every guy as a future husband. I would feel bad about myself after talking to her, because she thought we are at the same spot, depressed and helpless. But wait, I am not depressed and I don’t want to get married right away. You should see look at her face when I would say something like that. She decided to bring me down with herself. Her attitude was: “You couldn’t possibly be happy with your life!”
If you are feeling down every time after a dinner or a coffee with your friend, then he might be a toxic person in your life. Most of the time, toxic person is not aware of his behavior and sometimes they can be very unsatisfied with their lives. Off course, we have to be sensitive if something bad is currently happening in their lives. We are not talking about people who are going through a tough time (divorce, death of family member) and they need a friend and space to find peace.
How to recognize toxic people?
1. We are talking about those people who don’t look at you while you’re talking, who interrupt you or change a topic, even if you are sharing something very important to you.
2. They tend to be “I don’t have time” and “I have problems” people. They use: “I don’t have time” phrase when you are in a need of a friend and “I have problems” phrase when they need to see you immediately.
3. Most of the time you don’t have a lot of things in common with them. They can be your friend from childhood, neighbors, co-workers or relatives. Sometimes it feels like you can’t run away from them or you can, but you don’t want to hurt their feelings.
4. They always find negative side in everything you say. I would say “I am so glad to see how many people are using bikes to go to work.” and my friend would respond: ”Yeah, but there is no enough bike lanes.” “I am going out with this great guy I met few days ago.”, she would say: “ Let me see how he looks like… Oh, I know him. He is weird.”.
5. They have problems, but they act like they want for you to have problems as well. They respond negatively on everything good that you have and every moment you enjoy. They might give you advice that is total opposite from what you want and you would never do something like that. Why would I quit my job? Yeah, I know, it’s not my dream job, but I pay my bills and in the meantime I am saving money and looking for better opportunities. My friend would say: “You’re wasting your time!” You can imagine how mad you can get when someone tells you something like that, while you are fighting to get where you want to be.
What should we do about toxic people in our life?
1. If they are a neighbor or co-worker and we can’t really get rid of them, we can simply spend as less time as possible talking to them. We should avoid to talk to them about our personal life and to try to end conversation when we feel that they are on their way to drain your energy.
2. If this toxic person in your life is a friend or someone you truly care about, try to tell them how you feel, choosing your words carefully. You can try to remind them after every negative statement how that makes you feel. You should react on every “I am about to kill your mood” statement. Breathe in and breathe out and say how do you feel about that.
3. If you don’t feel guilty excluding this person from your life, then you should probably do that. Toxic person could be someone you just met or someone you knew while ago and know they are someone else. You should value your time and try your best not to be surrounded with people who want to bring you down. You have to make a decision that is the best decision for you.
What did I do?
She is not the person I would call if I need someone to talk to, because I know she won’t have time for me and after a while I had to make a decision not to have a time for her. It wasn’t that easy, but I realized if I don’t feel guilty about my decision I probably had enough of it.
How to deal with negativity in your life, and “toxic” people.
“I don’t have time” and “I have problems” people was last modified: October 7th, 2014 by Elvira Barucija
Elvira has a Master Degree in Psychology. She is passionate about writing, is always on trend, and thoroughly researches her topics to offer readers high quality content. She also enjoys working with children and practicing yoga.