14 ways smart people deal with toxic people
Toxic people have a way of reacting that defies logic and reasoning. This can make them particularly frustrating for intelligent people.
But where there’s a will, there’s a way. And while it can be difficult to completely shut a person out, it’s important to deal with a toxic person in a certain way.
Otherwise, the person will continue to bring stress and frustration into your life, which is not good for anyone.
If you have someone in your life who is constantly weighing you down, who is selfish and egocentric, who is manipulative and dishonest, and who constantly creates drama in your life, they are probably a toxic person. You may be wondering: what should I do?
Here are some tips and tactics smart people use to deal with toxic people.
1. Don’t agree with them
Toxic people like to play the victim. And in their imagination they can very well see themselves as such.
To keep the peace, you might be inclined to agree with them to keep your sanity.
However, this is not a good approach. Instead, have a respectful discussion with them.
2. Set boundaries
While you can’t completely separate from this person, you can set boundaries and distance yourself.
And if that person keeps popping up complaining or ranting about their latest drama, simply ask them, “What are you going to do to solve this problem?” It can be a quick but effective way to turn the conversation around.
3. Learn to say no
If that person keeps showing up, bringing all of their emotional toxins with them, you need to learn to say no, especially when you’ve set boundaries and they still don’t get it.
If he asks you to do something you don’t have time for or if he’s complaining about the day for the hundredth time, tell him, “I’m sorry, but I can’t today.” Or just say no their requests.
4. Pay attention to how the person makes you feel.
When that person is around you, see how you feel. When you are aware of what triggers this person in you, you can better assess how best to conduct the conversation.
5. Talk to her
If a person brings nothing but drama into your life, manipulates you, gossips about you, and constantly puts you down, talk to them.
However, make sure that you use first-person statements. Statements such as “I feel uncomfortable hearing gossip” or “I value honesty and trust in a friendship, so I can’t keep being with you if you lie to me.”
6. Stop negative talk
If this person is still bringing negativity into your environment, even after you’ve set boundaries and told them how you’re feeling, and they come back in a storm of negativity, change the subject. Or just walk out of it.
7. Don’t get caught up in an argument
Toxic people can be argumentative and love to engage in heated arguments.
If they start angering you or picking on you, don’t get drawn into an argument. Instead, tell them you don’t have the time or energy to argue with them and walk away.
8. Know your weaknesses
Be aware of what you cannot handle. Mentally set clear boundaries for these weaknesses so you know what to do when they are triggered.
Make sure you have a real and updated plan for when this happens and follow through.
9. Know your strengths
If you have a knack for redirecting the conversation when it starts to go downhill, make sure you’re prepared to put that plan into action.
Realize what your strengths are in a toxic relationship and use them when you can to protect your energy and keep your composure.
10. Don’t forget anything
Don’t forget the past too quickly. Experience teaches us and we learn from it.
While you can give a second chance, use past experience to protect yourself with the knowledge you have.
11. Get support
If you are dealing with a toxic employee, enlist the support of other employees.
Reach out to her and discuss what happened. If that person is a toxic friend, enlist support from another mutual friend or even a third party if necessary.
And if that person is toxic, try to have a neutral mediator around you who understands that person’s behavior.
12. Plan your reactions
You probably already know what to expect from that person (for the most part), and if there are certain things that person does that drain you, plan how you’re going to deal with them.
Have a contingency plan to either escape or take the person out.
13. Be solution-oriented
Don’t get stuck on the problem, work on solutions. If you get too caught up in the negative aspects (problems) of the situation and miss the solution, you let others win.
14. Get some rest
Dealing with a toxic person is frustrating enough. And when we’re sleep deprived, we’re unable to handle conflict with toxic people.
Instead, you’re far more likely to stoop to their level when you’re sleep deprived because you’re less emotionally controlled.