Buzzfeed would post something like: “15 Signs Your Relationship is Toxic”, and I could write that. I could tell you to stay away from fat people, SJWs, shit coiners, and that would 100% be good advice. But as the number of red flags for cultural toxicity grows, it’s better to have a comprehensive methodology rather than any one specific identifier.
Toxic people are capable of causing harm, stress, or outright death. These people consume your energy in a variety of forms. They rob you of your time, your money, any and all conceivable joy.
Look for negativity in your life. When you interact with a person see how you feel. Someone you’re unsure about asks if you want to hang out or talk go and see if you have a good time. Notice the habits you have in the relationship, are they overly critical of you, are you spending a lot of money, is the conversation small, petty, boring, or repetitive?
Often the negativity will voice itself as a concern troll. Pretending to be helpful, when really they’re actively trying to waste your time. You can identify this by actually addressing their concern. If they always have just one more concern.. #GTFO
Negativity affects your mental state on a day to day basis, and enough negativity can stunt your life entirely. Pay attention to it.
Yes, not all negativity is toxic. Some feedback is genuine criticism, but criticism only matters if it’s coming from a person you care about and respect. You have to see what type of negativity affects you and decide what to do about it.
Most people believe they’re a “good” person. Their the goal isn’t to radically change from bad to good but to become an incrementally better version of themselves. It doesn’t even matter what metric you’re using to define “good”, if someone doesn’t think you’re a good person any sustained relationship with them is toxic.
What could someone think, do, or believe that would make you put them in the box called “bad people”?
- Level I: Toxic people take their box and put you in it. (Projection)
- Level II: Toxic people take your box and put you in it. (Button Pusher)
- Level III: Toxic people does combos of both, blames you, then plays the victim.
- Level I Ex: I think religious people are stupid. You’re religious ergo, you’re stupid.
- Level II Ex: You think being irrational is bad? I’m going to call you irrational every time we fight.
- Level III is too advanced. Even I can’t do it.
Revaluate your current social circle
Out of everyone in the world, you’ve chosen the people in your life right now. If you’re not happy with your social circle (and you’re above the age of 13) it’s probably your fault. Relationships are a lot of work, and more than just work, they’re tons of responsibility. Your friends, your girlfriend, your family are your people. Why shouldn’t they be the best people?
Re-evaluating your social circle is hard because people are generally afraid to judge others, especially people close to them. This is not just a personal problem it’s an entire cultural problem. You’re not allowed to criticise other people, other cultures, other snowflakes. A lot of people are entitled, everyone is special, and the toxicity spreads.
Once you’ve identified a significant human toxin in your life you need to take step towards removal immediatly. You can start by reducing contact. This may work in some cases. But because toxicity and tolerance rates vary in each relationship, it’s important to remain conscientious of each individual threat. The goal is a complete purge of the toxin.
If you’re really in deep with several years of long-standing toxic relationships removal will be harder than identification. The most important thing is to cut out the fat, stop progressing towards obesity. Spend a year without friends and investing in new ones, you’ll value those people if only because it’s not easy to find them.
Removal is hard when your neural networks are trained to associate love with abuse, or friendship with drama. This should have been step 0, but ultimately you will have to decide what you want out of a relationship. If you can’t define what a good relationship is you’ll probably settle for a bad one.
Once you’ve decided someones got to go—and you’re going to pop them like a pimple, it’s important to tell them why. Not because you owe people anything. But because if they’re really toxic and you’ve been a victim of it, they have a lot of power over you.
When a snake bites its pray the venom thickens it’s blood until it can’t move. You have to retrain your body to not react to their toxicity, and in order to do that, you have to confront them. Maybe it goes well, probably it won’t. But the more difficult the situation, the more careful you’ll be about inviting toxicity into your life in the first place. And after they’re gone you’ll be amazed to realise how much you don’t miss them.