We meet people every day. Real friendships make your days brighter.
However, some relationships can leave you feeling drained. Everyone thrives on healthy relationships.
Consequently, it’s important to know when you’re in one that’s not. So, how would you recognize toxic friends? More importantly, how would you relate to them?
Types of Toxic Friends
1. The Green Eyed Monsters
First of all are Green Eyed Monsters, who take delight in your misfortune and just cannot bear it when you achieve more than they do. They may resent you when you are humble about your accomplishments. Nothing you do can change their feelings that they deserve more than you do.
2. The Pretentious
These folks do not make long-term friends because they tend to stay away from you when you need them the most. They chat about unimportant issues and neglect things that matter. Establish clear friendship boundaries with these characters.
Pride in yourself is acceptable, and in fact, essential. However, it’s unhealthy if it turns into arrogance. Being around people who put you down and treat you with disrespect is toxic.
4. Backward Walkers
Backward walkers are individuals who have a knack for disrupting your progress. They believe in being content with what they have. While that’s not wrong in principle, it’s unhealthy if it stunts your personal growth. Stay away from retrogressive people who lull you into forming the bad habits you used to have.
5. Control Freaks
These toxic friends must have a say in everything you do and want you to do their will. Some use clear means to control you, while others manipulate your emotions. Therefore, deal with such people by rising above them.
6. Compulsive liars
These people tell you what you want to hear and give you false impressions. Since you want to grow, surround yourself with honest friends who will support your development.
These people will criticize everything you do. They believe that people grow because they receive scoldings. Consequently, avoiding their insulting comments will help your growth.
These insecure people distort facts and feed others with false information to gain friendships. Such people should have no place in your life because their silly stories can stop your progress.
Everyone enjoys relationships which are mutually beneficial. Friends should look out for and help each other. Parasites, however, take without giving anything in return. They have only their interests in mind.
People with victim mentalities are emotional vampires. They assign blame and never consider that they may have a part to play in conflicts. So saying, they can cause harmful chain reactions that may disrupt your success.
8 Signs of Toxic Friends
No one walks around with a sign that reads, ‘Hey, I’m toxic.’ Putting the finger on such behavior is difficult. Furthermore, it’s unwise to spoil relationships. So how would you know that you have toxic friends?
1. Such people look at the dark side of life.
First of all, such friends will have problems focusing on the bright side of life. When you tell them ‘Though you had a flat tire, at least there was someone with a jack to help you change it,’ they’ll say, ‘Yeah, but that person took so long!’ They refuse to see positive outcomes.
2. Toxic friends don’t listen to your problems.
Such friends aren’t concerned when you have to gripe but expect you to pick up the phone when they call with a problem. They leave you feeling more lonely and frustrated than before you talked to them.
3, Such friends are critical
It’s normal to experience conflicts in relationships, but relentless criticizing is unhealthy. You’ll know that your friends are toxic if you feel afraid to turn to them for fear of being judged.
4. These friends get angry easily
Toxic people get upset over petty matters. Consequently, talking with them makes you feel guilty and depressed.
5. Such people don’t celebrate successes
Another trait of such friends is that they’ll feel jealous when you succeed, and will not congratulate you. It’s important for friends to celebrate successes and console each other in times of failure. Such behavior nurtures healthy relationships.
5. These friends don’t think about your feelings
These friends don’t consider how their words or behavior may affect you. They give no thought about how their lack of punctuality may cause you to arrive late at your next appointment. As long as your friendship benefits them, they won’t bother if they hurt your feelings.
6. Such people make you do things that make you uncomfortable
Real friends should urge you to widen your horizons, but never force you to do so if you’re not ready. Friends should introduce you to new things without making you feel like a loser if you don’t enjoy them.
7. These friends won’t compromise
Toxic friends aren’t willing to adapt to your circumstances. They’ll insist on eating at a particular restaurant, even if it’s too far from where you stay. They won’t change their mindsets, even if they’re not right.
How to Deal With Toxic Friends
You may have emotional vampires in your life that leave you feeling weary. Of course, it’s not always possible to choose your friends. So here are some ways to relate to toxic ones without losing your cool.
First of all, set limits. Tell them that you can only talk for about ten minutes because you have something to do. Voice what you can and can’t do. For example, make it a point to tell toxic friends that you can’t meet at XYZ restaurant because you won’t have the time to rush to a place so far away.
Note that if you allow toxic friends to shower you with negative comments, you’re\going to end up disliking them. If you force them to change their mindsets, it will sound as if you’re criticizing instead of supporting them. So empathize before prodding them to change their thinking.
Another way to deal with toxic friends is to state your needs. Since their problems consume them, you can’t expect them to know that they are emotional vampires until you say so. They may not know how they affect you. Advise them not to always launch into their problems because everyone has their own to solve.
Finally, if your friends refuse to understand your needs, let them go. Putting up with toxic behavior shows your friends that you will tolerate it.
You don’t need to ignore your toxic friends, but you may need to distance yourself from their negative behaviors. Of course, let them go if their negativity proves too much to handle.
By Michelle L.
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