Toxic people are those people in your life who always seem to add drama and create stress. Toxic people could be at your workplace, family members, or even friends. They always tend to cause more problems in your life and trigger a feeling of anxiety or stress when you communicate with them.
Recognising and removing the toxic people from your life is vital to your own well-being. Toxic people are usually chronically unhappy, and hold feelings of resentment, jealousy or frustration towards you. This is often due to their own mental state and not as a result of something which you have done or said to them.
Toxic people can suck the happiness out of you, and their attitudes can leave you feeling guilty, ashamed, and unhappy. Toxic people are one of the biggest threats to your happiness, which is why distancing yourself from them is vital to ensure that you don’t fall victim to sabotage.
The word ‘toxic’ gets overused a lot of the time these days, so it’s important to be clear about what we mean by a toxic person. Perhaps you have a friend who’s a bit annoying or work with a colleague who can sometimes be rude or unpleasant. This doesn’t necessarily mean that a person is ‘toxic’ – there’s a difference, and some people are simply difficult or generally undesirable.
It’s important to put a bit of distance between yourself and this group of people, but there won’t be the same type of urgency to cut them out of your life as there is with those individuals who are deemed toxic.
Do they try to control you?
Controlling people tend to be one of the most common types of toxic people you could find in your life. As strange as it may sound, people who have little control over their own lives try to claim back the feeling of control by taking control of somebody else. Toxic individuals look for different ways to control others. They often use methods of manipulation such as influencing you to feel bad for saying no to them.
If you know a person who has a regular disregard for your boundaries, this person is most likely toxic. If you have a friend, family member or even co-worker who consistently continues to ignore you when you ask them not to do something, that person is probably toxic. Well-adjusted adults tend to find it easy and natural to respect the boundaries of others, whilst the toxic find ways to violate and override them.
With any healthy relationship, there is some give and some take. Whether it be family members, friends or colleagues, a well-adjusted relationship will involve each party both giving and taking the benefits from the partnership. Give and take is the lifeblood of a good friendship or relationship. Sometimes it’s you who needs a hand, sometimes it’s the other party – and both are willing to help when needed, evening it out in the end. However, toxic people don’t work like this.
Rather than return the favor when needed, a toxic person will be out to take whatever they can from you without considering reciprocating your goodwill.
If any of the above sounds familiar, it’s highly likely that you have a toxic person in your life. The level of risk to your well-being will depend on how close you are to the person – for example, if there’s a toxic person in your workplace who you speak to infrequently it’s unlikely that they’ll be a threat to your well-being. But, if the toxic person in your life is your spouse, for example, they could seriously sabotage your success and slow your progress.
Under the influence of a toxic person, you might second-guess yourself on an important decision and you’ll likely experience heightened feelings of upset, sadness and discomfort. You may even begin to blame yourself and begin to feel ashamed of your progress and well-being. You could even begin to display some of the toxic qualities that you resent, as toxic people have a peculiar way of influencing others to act like them.
Some toxic people are more difficult to remove from your life than others. Removing toxic people from your life often has a tendency to blow up in your face and create more stress. It’s important for you to be prepared and accept that it will be a process that might take time.
No matter who you are cutting from your life, it’s vital that you understand that it is for the best. If a person has been truly causing your happiness to diminish, they no longer deserve to play a part in your story. It’s important to understand that toxic people are likely to come back even after you tell them to go away – after all, if they’ve never respected your boundaries before, they’re not going to start now. Bear in mind that distancing yourself is a gradual process.
Taking the Next Step. If you need practical assistance, guidance or motivation Clear & Clutterfree can help you save both time and money getting organised and staying organised.
About the Author. Karen Perkins is a Life Coach and Personal Hands-on Organiser. She enjoys helping busy people achieve results through effective lifestyle choices that improve their personal and professional lives.