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"Toxic" behavior of people: types, causes and ways to protect yourself


Each of us communicates with dozens of people every day. These are family, friendship and business contacts, fleeting meetings in transport, shops and on the streets, targeted appeals to various organizations. Sometimes communication leaves an unpleasant aftertaste, the cause of which is difficult to explain. Psychologists believe that this feeling arises when we come across people who are prone to so-called toxic behavior.

Today we will talk about its types and causes, as well as ways to save your nerves and maintain peace of mind when dealing with people who behave in this way.


1. Touchiness

Excessive touchiness is often considered a sign of tenderness, sensitivity, and even timidity. In fact, the habit of being offended by any word and perceiving the most innocent joke as rudeness has nothing to do with fine mental organization. It is rather a tendency to manipulate other people using an artificially cultivated sense of guilt. Such a position arises on the basis of low self-esteem and the desire to stand out, without doing anything significant for this.


2. Accumulation of negativity

These people in any circumstances notice only negative points. It is not surprising that their eternal despondency causes irritation mixed with guilt among others, which the “negatives” use for their own purposes: as a rule, they believe that they deserve increased attention and exceptional loyalty. However, they themselves are not at all concerned that their talk about how bad things are is reflected in someone else's mood.


3. Self-admiration

When a person constantly praises himself, it becomes difficult to communicate with him, even if he is really successful. The fact is that he does not notice other people, knows nothing about them and is not interested in anyone but himself. People around usually do not suffer from this, but they also do not seek to contact a narcissistic egoist.


4. Position of the victim

At first glance, such a person looks miserable and harmless. He is only sure that those around him are unfair to him, and life circumstances are unjustifiably cruel. From the interlocutor, he expects only sympathy and understanding.

In fact, this position is extremely convenient. She is able to justify any mistakes, unwillingness to make decisions, and even the commission of unseemly acts. Communication with the “victim” is unpleasant: attempts to console or really help cause her protest, and assurances that the world is not so bad are aggressive accusations of callousness.


5. Talkative

Communication with a talker is always tiring, which has nothing to do with the content of the conversation: an overly talkative person can be interesting, erudite and witty. However, upon contact with him, the interlocutor often gets the feeling that the talker is using him to some extent: he ignores his thoughts, feelings, life experience and even the fact of having or not having free time in advance. Feeling like just a receiver of information is a shame, even if you are fully endowed with the talent of a listener.


6. Lack of self-control

Bad things happen to everyone. Each of us can feel bad, tired or upset, but venting our emotions on other people is unacceptable. People who cannot control themselves are unpleasant. You can always expect rudeness or hysteria from them. This keeps others in constant tension, which does not have the best effect on their health and communication style.

It happens that a person simply does not want to control himself, considering the peculiarities of his behavior a sign of a bright personality. Others perceive such outbreaks as a manifestation of bad manners. Apologies (“I'm sorry, I broke”) very quickly cease to inspire confidence if unpleasant situations during communication arise too often.


7. Excessive perfectionism

A painful desire for ideality is one of the most inconvenient traits for those around you. It can be difficult to understand a perfectionist, especially in cases where his oddities relate to ordinary everyday moments (washing dishes, putting things in order in the home, the condition of clothes and shoes, etc). It is even more difficult to come to terms with constant nit-picking: as a rule, such a person is not able to accept the lifestyle of other people and believes that his preferences are more important than all other circumstances and even above elementary politeness. Communication with a perfectionist leaves a feeling of resentment, unfair assessments and fatigue from tediousness.


8. Lack of compassion

Adults usually follow generally accepted rules of conduct. They realize that it is unacceptable to rejoice in other people's troubles, to show disdain for the disabled, to laugh at physical or intellectual shortcomings. A person who behaves differently is not just unpleasant – it causes a feeling of unpredictability and danger.

The openly demonstrated inability to sympathize is perceived as a sign of infantilism and mental limitation. In addition, every public manifestation of callousness entails an immediate reaction from others, which threatens the development of an open conflict. It is not surprising that they try to minimize contacts with such a person.


9. Seek approval

Self-doubt is manifested in some people by a constant search for external positive feedback. In this situation, it is unpleasant to communicate with a person for two reasons. First: he does something not quite right as often as other people, but he does not perceive even the mildest criticism at all. Second, a person who seeks approval takes up too much time from others, constantly demanding attention to himself. Instead of sympathy, it causes a feeling of fatigue and awkwardness.


In most cases, the cause of "toxic" behavior is directly related to low self-esteem. People who do not know how to communicate normally, to some extent, use others for self-affirmation. Contacts with them usually end in a spoiled mood. Situations are especially unpleasant when it is impossible to avoid regular communication. If your colleague or relative is prone to "toxic" behavior, you risk not only losing your mental balance, but also becoming a victim of one of the many diseases caused by prolonged stress. What to do?

  • First, take care of yourself. It is important to understand that it is impossible to change the behavior of another person. Attempts to argue, to convince of the incorrectness of his position will not give anything, except for a further deterioration in relations.
  • Secondly, it makes sense to assess the situation from a medical point of view. The fact is that some types of "toxic" behavior are symptoms of ailments: pathological accuracy sometimes occurs with obsessive-compulsive disorder, touchiness – with neurosis, talkativeness – with attention deficit disorder, etc.
  • Thirdly, "toxic" behavior is usually directed at everyone around you, and not at you personally. This means that the discomfort associated with such communication should not be taken to heart. If the person who annoys you is sick, you can only feel sorry for him. In any case, contact with him should be kept to a minimum as much as possible.

Source: neboleem.net