Growth & Grace Podcast Episode #20
Ep 20: 3 Ways to Deal with Toxic People
Just recently I found myself in a toxic situation, where I really had no choice in the matter. And now that I'm on the other side of it, I can reflect back and identify some things that I could have/should have done better. Hindsight is always 20/20 right? But I just want to say, that I get it. Sometimes we have situations and relationships in our lives that just suck! And we trick ourselves into thinking that there is nothing that we can do.
We can't change or control other people, but we do control ourselves. So I'm going to share with you first how to identify toxic people and then 3 things you can do if you find yourself surrounded by toxic people or in toxic situations.
Let's get started!
Identifying toxic people:
Every time you encounter or hang out with them, you feel exhausted, emotionally drained, and negative. A toxic person as anyone who is abusive, unsupportive, or unhealthy emotionally—someone who basically brings you down more than up.
Lot of drama. The whole relationship is about them. You catch them in lies. Points out the negative in everything, even when not asked. They keep you guessing what version of them you are getting. They manipulate situations. They never apologize or own their thoughts, feelings & actions. Thinks constantly get twisted and turned around on you. You're left feeling guilty when you've done nothing wrong.
I think we all know the kinds of people I'm talking about.
First, I want to say that You deserve to have people in your life who you enjoy spending time with, who support you, and who you LOVE hanging out with.
But sometimes we have these toxic people in our lives…not by choice.
Whether they are a friend by history. You've been friends for years, and you feel guilty not being their friend.
Or maybe it is someone in your family or your spouse's family and you feel like can't cut them out of your life.
Maybe it is someone you work with everyday. Someone on your flag football team. Someone who lives across the hall. They way your life is set up, you can't avoid them.
Don't let anyone steal your joy!
I'm not sure it's realistic to say that we can completely turn off our reaction of what others think of us, but we don't have to compare ourselves to others and we have to get to place where we just take other people's opinions with a grain of salt. If you are not confident in who you are and what you have to offer the world, then toxic people will take advantage of that. Toxic people want you to carry their emotional stuff. Miserable people like company.
Don't get sucked into that. Don't let anyone steal your joy. No matter what anyone else thinks or does, your self worth comes from within. Your joy is not based on circumstance. It takes some serious inner work to get to this place, but once you do….toxic people won't even want to be around you anymore! And those who are in your life by circumstance won't bother you as much! Seriously makes a HUGE difference! Don't let anyone steal your joy.
Focus on solutions
Toxic people don't want to focus on solutions. They want to fixate on negative emotions and problems. Which just perpetuations more stress and drama. It is easy to get sucked into that. When other people are making their problems your problems, their priorities your priorities. Focusing on solutions can break that cycle. It also puts you in the driver's seat.
Stay aware of your emotions:
Being able to name your emotions is the first step. Sometimes we use blanket emotions like mad, upset, angry…without diving too deep into what is under those emotions. Like if you're upset, then taking a minute to pause and refelct on what exactly is making you upset can make a huge difference. Are you hurt, are you frustrated, are you embarrassed, do you feel stuck? Backed into a corner? And then second, identifying how people make you feel is really important. You can’t stop someone from pushing your buttons if you don’t recognize when it’s happening. Sometimes you’ll find yourself in situations where you’ll need to regroup and choose the best way forward. It is perfectly okay to create some distance from situations and people while you figure out what is best for YOU!
Bonus: Establish Good Boundaries
Go back to episode 18 and that is all about setting healthy boundaries. Having healthy boundaries is also KEY in dealing with toxic people! So that episode might be super helpful for you!
That's all I got for today! Don't forget to leave a rating and review if you like listening each week, and I'd love for you to join the Growth & Grace FB community! Lots of fun stuff going on! Hope you're enjoying the last few weeks of summer, and I'll catch you next time!