Whether we realize it or not, we will come into contact with at least a handful of toxic people in our life. And how we handle them can make all the difference for the damage they cause to our lives.
These people include narcissists, sociopaths, compulsive liars, manipulators, gossipers and anyone else who drains your life of anything good. Sadly, in many cases, these people cannot be removed from our lives and thus we must deal with them in the best way we can. However, this can prove to be a daunting task, as certain methods only antagonize the toxic. So where do we begin?
1. Realize the Traits that Make Have Caused You to Become Prey
Please don’t misunderstand this, or perceive it as you take the blame for how you are being treated. Instead, if you have a toxic person in your life that you are giving into, try to look into that. If you are constantly giving money to a manipulator that has manipulated you, they will continue to come back. Don’t enable them!
2. Don’t React to Them Without Reflection
The toxic person will antagonize you to get a response. Don’t buy into it. Instead, reply calmly and think about it. If the situation merits action, then you can decide in a better state of mind what that action should be. Oftentimes, if we are working with toxic people, their behavior eventually merits a trip to HR.
3. Set Limits
Every relationship or encounter merits boundaries, especially those with a toxic person. Oftentimes, toxic people will wallow in self-pity by complaining constantly to manipulate you into feeling sorry for them. Nip this is the bud immediately.
4. Choose Your Battles Wisely
While sometimes the sociopath or narcissist will evoke a necessary response, don’t buy into their drama unless need be.
5. Remain Aware Of Your Emotions
When dealing with toxic people, remain aware of how they are making you feel. If any negative feelings arise, try to distance yourself from them. Remember, boundaries!
6. Work Towards a Solution
Instead of focusing on the problem, try to find a peaceful resolution. Even if this means gently backing away and escaping the toxic person, sometimes finding a solution is the best way to handle toxic people.
7. Reinforce Your Boundaries
When need be, stand behind your word, and let the toxic person know that they have moved over your boundaries. If there is a line drawn in the sand, they must respect that.
8. If All Else Fails Have An Exit Strategy
If you have exhausted all other measures and this person is simply toxic, then come up with a safe, peaceful and calm way to exit the situation that has brought this person into your life.