Toxic is Toxic.

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“Nobody deserves to be abused. The truth is, it is not your weaknesses that they target—it is your strengths.”

Abuse comes in different forms, such as physical, emotional, verbal, psychological etc. We stay in toxic relationships and affiliations because of the emotional blackmail of the abusers that has stronghold on the abused through Fear, Obligation and Guilt. Sometime abuse can be insidious and hard to spot especially when you are not aware of what it entails. Dr. George K. Simon Ph.D. wrote in his book,  In Sheep’s Clothing: Understanding and Dealing with Manipulative People 1:

“It may have short ears and it may have long ears; it may have a lot of hair and it may have no hair at all; it may be brown or it may be gray; but if it’s big and has tusks and a trunk, it’s always an elephant.”

Deep down we know toxic when we experience it and know what an abusive relationship is but most times we find it hard to set boundaries because our abusers are usually the closest people to us such as family, friends, co-workers, caregivers, spouses and close association. Dr. George K. Simon Ph.D. observed Manipulators often know us better than we know ourselves. They know what buttons to push, when to do so and how hard to press. Our lack of self-awareness can easily set us up to be exploited. 1


At some point you would have to set clear healthy boundaries for toxic individuals in your life. As dealing with toxic people leads to anxiety, stress, worry, and even death in some cases such as domestic violence and emotional abuse induced suicide. Pruning your Relationships by only aligning with things and individuals that are making you a better version of yourself is a great strategy.


The most important difference between a normal relationship and an abusive relationship is that an abusive relationship is a one-sided relationship where one person has all (or the majority) of the power and control and is focused on what they want—especially when the other partner isn’t looking—and feels entitled and justified in treating others, their partner, and their relationship however they want. And generally, the other one is either scared to leave, focused on keeping the relationship together at all costs, or is forever trying to figure out how to “fix” their partner’s behavior. 2

FOG is an acronym that stands for “Fear, Obligation, and Guilt.” These three emotions are often at the core of manipulation and are often how narcissists, sociopaths, and other types of emotional manipulators go about controlling their targets.

Toxic is toxic, and either situation is problematic and not worthy of your time or energy. You don’t owe a toxic person one more second of your time, you do, however, owe it to yourself to have peace in your life. You do not owe anything to a person who continues to cause you hurt or heartache. It’s okay to cut ties and never look back. It doesn’t matter if they are a friend, a former spouse, a coworker, or a family member. And it doesn’t matter if no one else agrees with your decision to cut ties with them. It’s not being mean, and it’s not lacking compassion—it’s self-protection, and other people don’t get to set your boundaries for what you want in your life, only you do.2

Remember, no matter how pleasant a toxic person may behave for a short period of time, they will always return to their baseline abusive behaviors.

Although toxicity exists on a spectrum, the merciless cruelty of these individuals cannot be underestimated, particularly when they lack empathy, as narcissists do. These are not normal relationship problems or indicative of a “communication” problem—these are patterns of heinous abuse and calculated mind games. 3


In her book, The Highly Sensitive Person’s Survival Guide to Dealing with Toxic People, author Shahida Arabi identifies five types of toxic people:

Toxic Personality Type #1: Garden-Variety Boundary-Steppers

These types of toxic people are the most benign out of the bunch, but they can still be harmful and are unaware of how toxic they are. They habitually cross over your boundaries by talking over you, invading your personal space, asking more of you than you can give, bestowing unsolicited advice, wasting your time, being flaky, or breaking commitments. They may be loud and self-absorbed, selfish, or otherwise unable to read social cues.

Toxic Personality Type #2: Crazy-Makers and Attention-Seekers

A step above the garden-variety toxic person are the “crazy-­makers” and “attention-seekers.” These types have one selfish agenda: to have the focus be on them at all times, even if the feedback they receive is negative. They will create drama, introduce conflict, or showboat to garner praise out of an overwhelming need for attention. While they can be incredibly draining, frustrating, and demanding of your attention, they are a bit easier to work with than your more malignant types.

Toxic Personality Type #3: Emotional Vampires

Emotional vampire” refer to toxic people who are capable of empathy but profusely drain your energy with their demands.

Toxic Personality Type #4: Narcissists

Narcissists can be dangerously toxic because they lack the empathy to actually care about anybody else’s needs but their own. They are self-absorbed, self-centered, and extremely entitled. Depending on the severity of their narcissism, they can also be abusive when any perceived slight induces their narcissistic rage.

Toxic Personality Type #5: Sociopaths and Psychopaths

Sociopath” and “psychopath” are the more common terms used for people with antisocial personality disorder (ASPD), which is the closest diagnosis we have in the most current version of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) to describing psychopathy. Someone with ASPD will usually exhibit traits and behaviors such as a pattern of violating the rights of others, a failure to conform to social norms, irritability and aggressiveness, deceitfulness, impulsivity, reckless disregard for self and others, consistent irresponsibility, and lack of remorse.

They thrive off the drama, and they live for the chaos they manufacture. Cut the interaction short as soon as you anticipate it escalating and use your energy on self-care and self-protection instead.

Psychological Abuse

Psychological abuse leaves no bruises. There are no broken bones. There are no holes in the walls. The bruises, brokenness, and holes are held tightly within the target of the abuse.

The behaviors of the abuser(s) involve chronic and repetitive secret games being played by one individual, or a group of people against a target. These actions are so well disguised that their venom frequently goes unnoticed. It is similar to clear toxins placed in a glass of water; one cannot see the injury being done until the body starts reacting to the prolonged exposure of the poison. This is exactly the way abusers plan it with psychological abuse. Covert, hidden, sneaky, and off-the-radar are all part of their agenda. 4

Psychological abusers exploit the exact traits that most empaths find beautiful in themselves. In recovery, many survivors begin to self-identify as being highly empathetic. They see that their relationship strengths were used against them by the abuser.

Set Healthy Boundaries

Healthy boundaries and having deal-breaker behavior will get the wrong people out of your life and they take practice. Be kind to yourself during this process, as it’s a lot like learning to ride a bike: odds are you will fall and get scraped up, but it’s part of learning. Keep at it, and you’ll get the hang of it. 1

Toxic people condition us to ignore our intuition, and we must learn to trust it again. Instead of judging outwardly, we need to perceive inwardly. When we start focusing on our own feelings, this is where the healing begins.

Find your Constant

Your Constant is a private reminder that you are not crazy, even when it feels like you’re taking on the entire world. With time, you will begin to filter out the people who make you feel bad. You realize that you do not need to put up with negativity when there is a Constant who brings out the best in you. 5

The thing about life is that you’re not aware that the short path exists until you’ve already taken the long path.

You are not crazy. You’re not bipolar, insane, hypersensitive, jealous, or needy. You’re a survivor of emotional abuse—and you can escape this trap. Just remain calm, patient, and always kind to yourself. Someday you will be able to talk about this experience eloquently and believably. Do not worry about convincing others of your story right now. This is what the psychopath hopes for. 5


  • Daily Calm with Tamara Levitt – TIme
  • We measure our time in terms of efficiency and productivity, by how much we accomplish with the limited time we have. As a result, time feels scares and it is hard to enjoy life when we must always count the cost of spending time on what we love.
  • The Ancient Greeks had two words for time: Chronos – time and Kairos -Human Time. Human Time is not measured by machines, it is measured by significant moments in our lives. In Human Time, a moment can stretch into what can seem like a lifetime or a whole day can fly by in a whirl of fun and excitement. Time itself moves and warps depending on our mood, activity, or focus.

Daily Jay with Jay Shetty – Share Happiness

  • A wise teacher once brought balloons to school and told her pupils to blow them up and write their names on one. After the children tossed their balloons into the hall, the teacher moved through the hall mixing them all up. The kids were given five minutes to find the balloon with their name on it, but though they searched frantically, no one found their own balloon. Then the teacher told them to take the balloon closest to them and give it to the person whose name was on it. In less than two minutes, everyone was holding their own balloon. The teacher said to the children, “These balloons are like happiness. We won’t find it when we’re only searching for our own. But if we care about someone else’s happiness … it will ultimately help us find our own.”
  • Happiness is all around us it just might not be ours. Sometimes it is better to pick up someone else’s balloon and hand it to them. We are interdependent, and while we shouldn’t expect others to give us our balloon, we can trust at some point, our goodwill might come back around. We can also focus on the joy that giving joy gives you.


All the Best

Lifelong Learner | Entrepreneur | Digital Strategist at Reputiva LLC | Marathoner | Bibliophile |

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