A toxic person isn’t all glow-y and green like they would be in the Simpsons, and usually, they aren’t really, actually, a toxic person. More, it’s how they behave that is toxic, the things they do that make you feel crap, and in turn like you want to put yourself in the bin. It sucks.
And it can be hard to see what’s going on, purely because usually, things don’t start out toxic, it’s gradual and subtle, and you probably only realise how crap you feel rather than why you feel so crap. Like the proverbial frog who's water is getting hotter so gradually that they don't realise they're being boiled alive. Also - what a weird and disturbing proverb 🤷
Now this isn't a checklist for toxic people, because it only takes one shitty thing, done often enough, to turn a relationship toxic, but some people might check more than one thing off.
Behaviours you don't need in your life:
Delivering Unhelpful Criticism
Okay so we can all benefit from someone that isn't afraid to give us honest and constructive criticism, which isn't always followed up with helpful pointers, but if it feels relentless and OTT, it's not helpful and it probably doesn't come from a good place.
Supplying Endless Negativity
We all have our reasons for being negative from time-to-time, and more often if there's something going on, but if you're getting nothing but negativity from someone, it's just a huge drain. It seems like some people just thrive on finding fault with everything, sometimes even going out of their way to get things to moan about. There's only so much you can put up with before it starts to drag you down to the same level and see only the shitness in the world around you.
Taking Pleasure In Your Mistakes
Needs no explanation really, not cool, not cool at all. Being a bit jealous sometimes is natural, even with your loved ones, but there's a line that shouldn't be crossed.
Holding You Back For Their Benefit
This might happen most often in a work environment but definitely not exclusively. We do exist in a weird hierarchy of people, so it can be that an odd internal adjustment is required when people go from being one thing to another, for example when your baby sister is suddenly not an annoying housemate with a Saturday job, to high flying career woman, but we all have to get our head around these things, rather than trying to hold people back, whether it's by actually taking action or even just undermining your confidence on whatever it is you're trying to do.
Dumping Their Responsibilities On You
This isn't just for people that are delegating your way, way, way, too much, but also for friends taking advantage. Sure, we shouldn't offer to help if we don't want to, but there comes a time you realise some people might take it too far. The more you help, the more they expect you to do, until you find yourself doing the most ridiculous things for them, with little appreciation. If you know they'd drop everything and do the same for you, maybe that's just how your relationship works, but if it's not a 2 way street it might be time to shut up shop.
Putting Obstacles In Front Of You For No Good Reason
"Oh, you're going to do this? Well what about that thing I've just done that will make it more difficult." Great. Just like the people that love to complain, there are people that love to make life just that little bit more difficult for people around them. Throwing a spanner in the works from time to time might be a fact of life, but when you realise your 'works' are 50% spanners it's time to take action.
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