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6 Signs of a Toxic Person

Updated: Jan 16

You've seen the posts, you've read the articles, you've heard the pundits. And what you've concluded is, you should avoid toxic people. But what does that really mean?

It's not as difficult as you might think to recognize them. The hardest part is admitting it and the second hardest is letting them go out of your life. You see, we fight and flee those things in our life that represent danger, and if those people are familiar to you, they are safe and leaving them to the unfamiliar, the unknown represents danger.

Here are six ways to spot toxic people

1. They always find something wrong with your excitement.

You are excited about a new person in your life. When you share the excitement with your friend she rattles off a list of negatives and warning signs in the name of protecting you. That might be legitimate, except that this is what she does every time you are happy.

2. They frequently break agreements.

Maybe making plans to go out is not the most important event in your life, but toxic people will not only constantly make and break plans, but they will also allow such inconsiderate behavior to spread into more important event planning.

3. They are verbally and/or physically abusive.

This is a pretty obvious one, but one that is often ignored. It's ignored for the reason I wrote above. You remain with these people because it is what you know and to you and your Brain, the danger of what you don't know is greater than the one you do. You are comfortably uncomfortable.

4. They are always in competition with you.

You can't wait to share with your friend that you will be going on a special trip. Before you have a chance to tell them where they have already started listing all the trips they've been on in the last 10 years. They always seem to be on a mission to one-up you.

5. They create and attract drama.

For toxic people, a simple disappointment can turn into a calamity. They do not tend to go with the flow. Patience, calm, and thoughtful assertiveness are replaced by screaming and moaning about how life has done them wrong. Often this shows itself in passive-aggressive behavior.

6.They never take personal responsibility.

If you're not careful and don't get out, you might just become the reason for all his/her shortcomings, in their eyes. They will never take responsibility.


I know you expect them to change or at worse think you can change them, but the reality is that they are unlikely to change unless they have a personal epiphany. I suggest you utilize the guide above, leave while you can, and perhaps you can get out before they suck the life out of you.

© Dr.Charles F. Glassman, CoachMD

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