Toxic people are everywhere. They’re at your office, your neighborhood, the grocery store, your home. No matter where you go, you’re bound to run into someone that lives knee-deep in misery. Toxic people thrive on misery. They’re rarely positive and generally have nothing good to say about anyone.
If you get caught in the snare of one of these miserable souls, they can bring you down faster than you can try and stop them. Their energy penetrates yours, breaking down your happy shield and injecting negativity into your soul quickly.
So how do you kick ’em to the curb? Is it even possible? If you put into practice one or more of the ways we’re going to dive into, your toxic neighbor or coworker will disappear, leaving you standing in the sunshine, smiling.
If you get caught in the snare of one of these miserable souls, they can bring you down faster than you can try and stop them.
- Set Boundaries: If you work with or live with a toxic person, that doesn’t mean they have to be where you are at all times. Set boundaries. If they want to go to lunch with you, tell them you have other plans, thank you very much. If they want to be part of your team at work, tell them you’ll consider it, but you’ve already got the team assembled and are moving forward. If you don’t set boundaries, they will, and their boundaries will include preying on you.
- Stop Saying Yes: Some of us are afraid to say no. We don’t know how. If we’re people-pleasers, we want to try and keep the peace, so it’s easier to say yes. Decide to say no. If the toxic person gets mad, does it really matter? They’ll leave you alone, and that’s just what you want. Once they discover you’re not interested, they’ll bother someone else.
- Slowly Let Them Go: Stop returning calls as much. Don’t text back until the next day. Don’t encourage outings. You’re allowed to pick and choose the kind of people you want to spend time with. There are beautiful people out there. Let the miserable, toxic ones go and embrace the ones that give you a reason to smile.
- Don’t Fight Back: Remember that miserable people want a fight. If they rile you up, they win. (Or so they think they do.) Don’t let them. No matter how much you want to lash back out, don’t. If you fight back, they become angrier. But if you just let them roar, eventually they’ll run out of steam. The best part is they’ll walk away feeling defeated. If they experience defeat enough times, they’ll stop.
- Love Them Through It: This is a tough one for some, but once you recognize that toxic people are toxic because they’re in pain, you might be willing to love them anyway. The truth is they’re not mad at you. They’re mad at themselves and are taking it out on you. Keep that in mind and mentally send them love. Positive vibes create more positive vibes.
How do you stay positive when someone is negative around you?