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5 Types Of “Toxic” Persons You Should Actually Admire

5 Types Of “Toxic” Persons You Should Actually Admire

Throughout history, man has always felt the need to label people and define things. In a sense, it is how we learn to understand the world around us. From childhood to adulthood, we are taught how to separate people into two groups: good or bad. Labels are based on the filters and perceptions we have, which are often wrong. There are two sides to every behavior, so don’t be too quick to judge.

It is in itself toxic to define someone else as toxic. Every situation presents a learning opportunity and how you interpret a person’s actions towards you, will depend on your own sensitivities. You will either see the glass half full or think it half empty. If you are ready to keep an open mind, this list of five types of toxic persons you should actually admire will prove just that.

1. People who don’t believe in your dreams.

“People say motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing; that’s why we recommend it daily” – Zig Ziglar.

Those who don’t believe in your dreams are the haters and doubters. They are the ones who belittle your dreams and make you feel like a failure before you have even started. Common sense might say to completely avoid these people, but here is why you shouldn’t

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Those who have dreams and goals to achieve, know how long the road and the process can be. It is for this very reason that you need those who don’t believe in your dreams. If you are willing to see the glass half full, then you may start to see these people as your very own personal reverse-psychology cheer leading team.

You don’t have to pay them any money, and they provide the daily motivation to remind you to keep going and never give up. If everyone believed in your ability to achieve your goals, you may not have the urgency to act. You need people who remind you of realistic challenges and problems which you may face. And who make you want to succeed even more. Those who didn’t believe in your dreams truly deserve your admiration. Without them, you may not be where you are today.

2. People who bring stress into your life.

“A diamond is just a piece of charcoal that handled stress exceptionally well” – Unknown.

We all have these people in our lives. It can be a parent, a coworker, siblings or friends. They are people who will drive us crazy with their drama, negativity or irresponsibility. They can also be very demanding people to deal with. While you may cringe at the thought of spending time with them, here is why you should learn to deal with the stress.

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A lot of people spend a lot of time and money trying to avoid stress, stressful people or stressful situations. However, not all stress is bad for you. In some situations a person stressing you out is a good thing. They may in fact actually be motivating and pushing you to be better or to do better. Remember that our culture is filled with success stories of people who had a tough start in life and achieved stardom nevertheless. Learn to tap into the energy of stress and value those who bring some type of stress into your life.

3. People who use you.

“The truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for.” – Bob Marley

No one likes to be taken advantage of. Once you discover someone is using you, it can make you feel disposable. This feeling can be very toxic and may affect how you relate with and treat other people. While it is smart to avoid these types of toxic persons, here is how you can start to make the situation work in your favor.

To be fair, everyone uses everyone whether we mean to or not. So it is not so out of the norm for some people to befriend you just because of what you have to offer. In fact, you do it, too. The difference is you probably call those friends you use dependable. Those who use you are actually good for you in the sense that they provide an opportunity to batter. They have already put themselves out there. With a little communication, you can begin to make the relationship work in your favor.

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4. People who don’t care about you.

“We all matter – maybe less then a lot but always more than none.” ― John Green

We all have an innate desire to be liked even by complete strangers. Often we use how people respond to us as a measure of our own self-worth. So naturally we tend to not want people who don’t care about us around. While this is a good thing, it also means that you will have no diversity in your life. Here is one way to make this situation a positive one.

In the age of likes, follows and numerous friend adds on social media, don’t forget the importance of knowing your quality friends from your quantity of friends.
Apart from your inner circle, everyone else is an acquaintance who may not care about you. This is not a bad thing, in fact the world does move on without you. Friends who don’t care about you, do well by reminding you of the importance of family and true friendships

5. People who point out your flaws or criticize you

“There is only one way to avoid criticism. Do nothing, say nothing and be nothing.” -Aristotle.

This kind of “toxic” people can be very hurtful. They seem to nit pick away at who you are and each comment can feel like a sledge hammer. While it is smart to guard you heart against such people, here is why you should develop an elephant’s skin, so that you can hear what they have to say without being hurt by it.

A lot of times the people who criticize you, truly have your best interest at heart. They see your potential and your flaws and are bold enough to call you out on both. If you would take your emotions and sentiments out of it, you just might learn something about yourself that could be crucial to your future achievements.

Depending on how you see the glass, a critic is someone to offer feedback when it may very well be needed. If your desire is to get better at your craft and be the best you can possibly be, then you must understand the importance of people who point out your flaws or criticize you.

There is beauty to be found in any situation, and people who have been labelled “toxic” can actually have benefits and add value to our lives. Like I said earlier, it is all in how you decide to look atit. With the right attitude, they can be admired, even appreciated. After all, it is in the face of adversity that we often become who we were meant to be.

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Featured photo credit: Shadow people via flickr.com

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Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

Reference

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