2020-02-06
shutterstock.com

Surviving the ups, downs, and lightning storms of other people’s moodiness can be quite a challenge. While some people display this negative behavior because they are going through something bigger, some people act this way because they are simply toxic bullies. They use their behavior to manipulate others to get what they want in the long run.

If you observe these people closely, you will notice that their attitude is overly self-referential. Their relationships are prioritized according to how each one can be used to meet their selfish needs. It can be extremely draining to those who stay in their life, whether it is in a friendship, working relationship, romantic capacity or even a family member.

It's important to start cutting out these toxic people in your life if you want to be happier too. The first step in breaking free is to realize that you are in a toxic relationship. Otherwise, you will continue to make excuses for their behavior and stay around. It's also important to remember that you are not alone, and that there are ways to escape these relationships that are safe and effective.

Signs of a toxic person.

Toxic people rarely show up toxic at the beginning. They show up as super sweet, interested, and caring. Emotional manipulators know how to pull you in and slowly take control. They are pros at getting what they want. They might also show up acting weak in an effort to get your sympathy. You need to look out for constant whining and complaining, clinginess and dependency, criticism, and negative or cynical worldviews. If you feel you are always walking like you are on eggshells around the person, are intimated by them, or feel unsafe or uneasy in their company it’s also a sign your gut is telling you they are toxic.

How to get out of a toxic relationship.

The only way you can invite a toxic person into your life is if you are broken yourself. It isn’t something you do consciously, knowingly, or because you want it. A toxic person cannot maneuver their way into the life of a fully aware and self-assured individual, nor would they try. It's important to realize your own self-worth. If you struggle with this, speak to your therapist about how you can grow and fix these holes.

The key to a healthy relationship is knowing your worth and your value and not letting a toxic person define it for you. First, realize you do have the strength to move on without them and you shouldn't feel guilty for doing so. When you delete toxic people from your environment it becomes a lot easier to breathe and you will feel a sense of relief, even if at first you find yourself missing them.

Next, stop pretending that their toxic behavior is alright. Constant drama and negativity is never worth putting up with. Speak up and stand up for yourself by saying that they are not allowed to contact you any further, and that they are cut off from you. Some people will do anything for their own personal gain until someone interjects and tells them enough is enough. If you feel they would physically hurt you or turn to emotional abuse in this instance, though, skipping this step is alright. If you feel leaving would put you in danger, reach out to professionals.

Some other ideas to help you escape include reading literature on the topic, joining a support group, and finding resources if you need additional outside help to leave. Cutting people out of your life can be hard, even if they are bad for you. You have to take time for yourself so you have time to heal. Having to play the role of a “focused, rational adult” in the face of toxic moodiness can be exhausting, and if you’re not careful, the toxicity can infect you. You deserve to think peacefully, free from external pressure and toxic behavior.

When you are forced to keep the toxic relationship.

In a perfect world, you can tell that toxic person in your life to leave, but this isn’t always possible. What if the toxic person is your boss, colleague, or family member that you really cannot avoid? There are some strategies to help you deal with the person in your life without losing it.

Have you asked yourself what is making you such an appealing target for the toxic person? Maybe you lose your temper fast, which makes them enjoy pushing your buttons. Maybe you battle to say no, so they take advantage of you. Think about what you’re doing that makes you a target and try to change it so that it’s harder for them to get to you or hurt you.

If you want to decrease the amount of stress you feel around the toxic person, stop trying to change them. You’ll never be able to do that. Even if you work super hard at your job to try to get your toxic boss’s approval or you become the most amazing friend to your toxic mate, it’ll never make them into the person you want them to be. You have to let them go in that aspect.

Lastly, when it comes to friends and other loved ones, sometimes a great way to get some relief from their behavior, and hopefully send the toxic person a message, is to take a time out. Stop talking to them and do your own thing for a while. This also helps you to put a toxic friend in her place without cutting out the entire friendship.

Toxic relationships can rip you apart. Once you get out you will be amazed at the freedom you have and the joy you will feel to be yourself again. Plus, you will now have the tools you need so you don’t make the same mistake when choosing your next relationship.



more from beliefnet and our partners