How To Stop Being A Toxic Person In 10 ways
Hi guys and girls. I know I said the last mytake was going to be concluded but of course I felt inspired. So please forgive me. I got some feedback and a lot of people noticed that they may carry some toxic traits and behaviors. This does not mean you are a toxic person overall. EVERY one has at some point in time demonstrated a toxic behavior but it's how you change and evolve that actually matters. So I will be covering skills and tools to help you become less toxic. Some of these skills are from cognitive work, so if it does not make any sense do not fret. I will cover cognitive skills and tools at a later date. Let's get started
Mindfulness is a cognitive skill and tool that is utilized to help a person to stay in the moment without judgement. Mindfulness is not easy and I will show you why. Next I will be guiding you into mindfulness. If you are not interested in experiencing mindfulness first hand, please skip to number two but it's highly recommended you participate if you really want the cognitive benefits. (First get comfortable however that looks. Turn off stimuli and lights if you can. Once it is quiet and there are little to no distractions please start deep breathing. Breathe in for five seconds and exhale for five seconds. Do this continuously for five minutes. While you are deep breathing start to observe your environment non judgmentally. For example, "that rock is big" is an observation whereas "that rock is ugly" is considered a judgement. Ready, set, go. Have you finished? Okay great!!!!! How did that go for you? Did you last the whole five minutes? Did you experience racing thoughts? What is one emotion you felt? Were you able to stay in the moment or did you drift? Did you make judgements no matter how hard you tried? No worries, mindfulness practice gets easier overtime, try to commit 1-5 minutes a day to mindfulness and gradually increase it over time.This self awareness can prevent arguments, disagreements, physical fights, and impetuous actions. This will also help you manage your emotions, thoughts, and feelings more effectively. Mindfulness creates self awareness. So to sum it all up, mindfulness will promote awareness, better problem solving, self love and appreciation, logical thinking, and effective communication. If you obtain these skills you will be better equipped to handle toxic people and to prevent developing toxic traits. I know this is a lot of information being thrown at you but it is necessary.
2. Love Yourself!!!!!!!!
You cannot truly love someone without loving yourself first. All of those judgements, critiques, and insecurities will need to be worked on so you are not projecting those into your relationships. If you do not practice self love you will eventually become depressed, guilty, ashamed, angry, sad, hopeless, afraid, etc. These emotions are neither good nor bad because each emotion serves a purpose. (Refer to the movie Inside out) Projection of those insecurities will eventually lead to the destruction of a relationship. Loving yourself is an "inside job." This means that no one is responsible for making you love yourself or for making you happy. So no matter how much outside validation you get it will never be enough if you don't love yourself first. I will say it again, outside validation will NEVER be enough because loving oneself is an inside job. (If you guys would like a mytake with more ways to "love yourself" I would love to write one).
3. Stop Over Asking For Validation
Validation is needing/seeking confirmation or affirmations for thoughts, feelings, or actions in an attempt to feel adequate and worthy. We all need some validation sometimes. We need reassurance that we are making the right choices. This begins very early in childhood. For example, did you ever ask your guardians if you were doing something the right way? I would always ask my dad if I cleaned good enough, if my grades were good enough, if I was fat, etc. Growing up I needed this validation to build my morals, values, and character. That's why when kids ask for validation we give it as soon as possible to nurture their development. Validation becomes a negative when you are no longer a child and you're still asking for validation like one. For example, asking if you are "dateable", "loveable","desirable","beautiful", "handsome", etc. Why does anyone need to validate these questions except to either boost someone's ego or stroke someone's insecurities? "Beautiful" means "pleasing to the senses or mind aesthetically." So even works of art, books, movies, handwriting, languages, landscapes, buildings etc can all be considered beautiful so why can't everyone see the beauty in themselves? No where in the definition does it state that you have to appear "pleasing to the senses or mind aesthetically" by someone other than yourself. Once you stop seeking the approval and validation of others can you live a more fulfilling life and maintain healthier relationships.
4. Leave Your Ego At The Door!
It is OKAY to admit faults, flaws, and wrongdoings. Acknowledging, apologizing, and making a great effort to change for the person you have wronged can rid you of this toxic trait. Take responsibility and accountability for your actions and the impact they have on others. Have you ever been wrong and instead of admitting it, you continued to argue your point? Have you ever received new information that challenged your own and instead of considering it you just stick with your original opinion?(even if the facts support the other person) Have you ever intentionally lied about something so that you didn't have to admit that you were wrong? If you answered yes to any of the questions then you need to check your ego at the door.
5. Stop Comparing Everything!!!!!!
Comparing is one of the most toxic things you could do. So I will ask, have you ever wondered why someone has more likes, follows, badges, feedback, matches, views, shares, retweets, popularity, male attention, female attention, more money, less money, the list goes on and on…….. Didn't it slightly annoy you reading this list because it annoyed me while I wrote it. Comparisons in this fashion only serve to create unnecessary competition, hate, tension, jealousy, envy, or even anger. This is very toxic to any relationship. Be happy with what you have been given, because it could ALWAYS be worse. Just think how it would feel if you had nothing to compare yourself to. (If you guys would benefit from a mytake on how to stop comparing yourself to others I would love to write one, please leave feedback)
6. Stop Surrounding Yourself With Toxic People.
This is the obvious but not so obvious way to become less toxic. Have you ever heard the saying "You are who you hang around"? This is the idea that the longer you are around certain people and environments, you will eventually start to mirror and mimic the behaviors you are surrounded by. It's very natural and human nature to try to fit in or be similar to those who are around you. In biology this is called adaptation. You need to avoid those who are considered toxic. If you need tips to identify toxic people please refer to my previous mytake 8 Types Of Toxic People
7. Self Compassion
STOP beating yourself up!!!! Stop calling yourself ugly, dumb, inadequate, unworthy, useless, crazy, weird, unloveable, undateble, etc. I am sure everyone can add one word to this list.
Self compassion is the ability to be kind, caring, understanding, and non judgmental to self. Do you know why it's easier to show compassion to someone other than yourself? It's because you don't feel you deserve it. You don't believe you are entitled to it. And you don't love yourself enough to care to give it. When you don't give yourself compassion you are essentially neglecting your own needs. Some signs that you are not showing enough compassion to self is constant negative commentary of self. For example, I am fat, no one will love me, I am too short, I am too tall, I am ugly, I am not fit enough, I am too shy, I am too introvert, my penis is too small, my penis is too big, etc. Everytime you say something negative about yourself follow it up with something positive. Do this for one week and see how you feel. It will feel ridiculous at first but over time new neuropathways will form and allow you to automatically think positively about yourself rather than always thinking negatively. I have personally tested this and it works. I start my day with at least one affirmation and one gratitude. (If you need help with proper affirmations and gratitude I will be happy to give examples based off of specific insecurities.)
8. Stop Being A Leech/Opportunist
If you currently have someone taking care of you financially when you are more than capable of taking care of yourself, then you are toxic to the person having to sacrifice and provide for you. There is nothing wrong with receiving help or assistance during a challenging time but it is your responsibility to take care and provide for yourself once you are of age. Do your friends always pay your way just for you to hang out? Are you currently living rent free and not contributing finances or at least keeping the home clean? Are you always asking to borrow money and never seem to pay it back? Have you ever spent all of your money and asked someone for theirs? Do you feel like your survival is more important than someone else's? If any of these sound familiar you are either toxic or being taken advantage of by someone toxic.
9. Stop Talking And Listen
What percentage of conversations are you speaking and what percentage are you listening? I listen 90% and I only speak about 10% or 0% if I am talking to family members. If you spend your time listening to everyone's life and never get to discuss your own then you need to make some changes. For those who are great listeners you need to create a boundary for socializing with the toxic person if they remain in your life. For those who talk the most you need to make an attempt to listen more, and ask about their wants and needs. A relationship/friendship is a two way street. Every conversation should be 50/50 generally and this number changes based on the conversation and topics discussed. So let's all make an effort to be better listeners!!!!! Do not spend whole conversations talking about yourself.
10. Stop One Upping
I said earlier to make sure you talk less and listen more. But it is also important to note the quality of the interactions. An adult one upper is someone who responds to someone sharing an experience or hardship by immediately telling a similar story about themselves and effectively making it no longer about you. The person who shared the experience would begin to feel unheard, frustrated, and maybe sad because they can never get a moment. For example, when I was in high school I was talking to a classmate and was telling her about how my mom slapped me and attempted to kick me out. So some random classmate overheard the conversation and immediately jumps in and says "yes my mom yelled at me, and I think that's worse than what you're mom did". It was so bizarre that someone wanted to make my hardship a competition of who had it worse. Another example, you're talking and you say "I booked a trip to Cabo and I'm so excited" and they respond "Oh I went to Cabo 6 times and it's not really fun. We did this. And this. And this." Basically you gave a topic and the other person tells the story.
Make sure you are mindful of how you are responding and reacting throughout conversations to ensure you are not exhibiting toxic behaviors.
The End!!!!! Thanks again you guys for reading. This one was definitely more difficult to write than the others. I hope it makes sense and helps to identify toxic behaviors and hopefully how to rid yourself of if. Just because you have a few toxic behaviors or traits does NOT mean you are a toxic person. Let me know what kind of mytake you would want some clarity on. I am happy to help. Disclaimer: I do not own or profit from the illustrations on this post. The artists are very talented and deserve recognition. Support their accounts and pages!!!! All feedback is welcomed and appreciated. Have a wonderful COLORFUL day