Many people have difficulties telling apart normal from toxic behavior.
While arguing and fighting with the ones around us, whom we truly care about, is not unusual, there are limits we should never cross. Once these limits are ignored, we can no longer consider the situation acceptable.
Unfortunately, we often fail to recognize when it’s finally time to draw the line and stand up for ourselves. However, there are some toxic behaviors we should look out for, which can be found in our relationships with our relatives, friends, co-workers, or even romantic partners. Manipulation, ghosting, and blameshifting are only a small part of the ways someone could undermine your boundaries.
Here are 6 common toxic behaviors you should never tolerate.
When somebody intentionally downplays your accomplishments, they are doing it only because they cannot stand seeing you happy, while they’re feeling miserable. Oftentimes, they even envy your success and try to undermine your efforts, so they can feel better about themselves. This is a clear sign they’re lacking self-esteem, and all they want to do is to bring you down to their level of misery.
This is one of the most dangerous patterns of toxic behavior. It’s based entirely on emotional abuse and cruel manipulation. The gaslighter’s victim is being forcefully convinced that what they see, feel, hear, and say is only a product of their imagination. As they fall into the trap of a skillful manipulator, they begin to question their own reality. If you are not aware you’ve become a victim of gaslighting, such type of abuse can severely damage your mental health.
3. Personalizing criticism
If someone is constantly humiliating you by listing all of your flaws, imperfections, and small, nearly insignificant mistakes, they are actually implying personalizing criticism. When a person is repeatedly reminding you about the errors you’ve done in the past, they might be intentionally making you feel bad about yourself. This way, as they weaken your mental state, they can later easily manipulate you into doing whatever they want.
Toxicity comes in many forms and ways, but some of them are beyond hurtful and emotionally devastating. Scapegoating is definitely one of them. While you cannot imagine blaming someone innocent for something they never did, some people would do it without even thinking twice about it. These individuals don’t care if they are hurting someone’s feelings, as long as they get out clean of the situation. Oftentimes, such immoral beings can even convince you that you are the one to blame for their own mistakes.
Some people find it hard to open up and express their feelings. However, others simulate such behavior only to manipulate you. By creating a fictional stonewall around themselves, they control the way you treat and perceive them. They use this deceiving tactic especially when they are trying to avoid answering your questions or taking responsibility for their actions.
An indecent person who has somehow gained a certain power over you would often use threats to manipulate you. They would try to control you through ultimatums and conditions. They might even warn you that if you don’t do what they want you to, they would do something that would hurt you.
Toxicity should never be tolerated, regardless of whom it’s coming from. In case you’ve noticed some of these toxic behaviors in the people around you, you need to distance yourself from them to preserve your own mental health.