Tips to handle toxic people
"Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom."
Work on It
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Toxic people can be emotional vampires – and everyone knows someone who’s toxic. Who drives you crazy?? It could be your mom, or your ex, or anyone else, but if you have an impulse control problem, such as
or gambling etc
the stress of dealing with them can cause you to resort to your addictive behavior. Of course, you’re the one who must take responsibility for your behavior, however, toxic people can set you back. it’s important to have strategies to deal with them.
That’s the topic of the March newsletter: How To Handle Toxic People.
Work on it: Ideally, it’s best to work things out by talking with the toxic person. Don’t give the job to someone else. If you have the problem, you’re the only one who can fix it.
Don’t Ignore: Giving the ‘silent treatment’ or pretending everything is ‘fine’. Makes the situation worse. It will resurface inappropriately somewhere down the road.
Explain: Give a call (no e-mail or text) and say how you feel. If you need a break, tell them. Don’t argue. Tell the person that ‘we can speak when we’re both not so emotional’ – and give an excuse to get off the phone.
Disconnect: You can’t simply forget certain people – particularly if they’re family. The only way to deal with them is to learn to emotionally disconnect by /turning your thoughts around. Then they can stay in your life, without having an effect on you.
Should: “You SHOULD call your mother, -- after all a mother is a mother,” – That type of thing. Don’t do it because you ‘should’. If you call, do it for yourself. Keep the conversation short, to the point and have an exit plan -- no anger or guilt.
Be Direct: Get to the point. The more you talk and explain, hoping the other person will understand, the more you’re opening the conversation to argument. Keep it simple and avoid more discussion.
Distance: Don’t respond immediately to returning e-mails, or texts etc. Think about what you have to say. Once again, keep your response simple. Stay in touch if you want to, but give yourself the space you need.
Drama: Some people love to get involved. They will bad-mouth you privately or publicly. If necessary, tell others that you have issues with this person, but don’t fuel the fire. You can’t stop the gossip, but fueling the fire keeps it burning.
Consequences: Understand the consequences for distancing yourself from these toxic people. Inform mutual friends or close family members what’s going but, don’t allow them to take sides or try to be peacemakers.
More Action: If these points are enough, stop here. But sometimes, no matter what you do, you must sever all communication with the toxic person.
Work through your anger and stay focused on why you must do this. Then stop all contact. Avoid listening or acknowledging the rumors.
Do what you can to maintain an emotionally distant relationship, but if it’s not possible, set strong boundaries. To live a powerful life, you mustn’t allow toxic people to disturb you.
1) Work on It
2) Don’t ignore
6) Be Direct
10) More Action
Many of us believe that
and addiction go together – not so. You can enable anyone. I hope this e-mail is helpful and my thanks to the author for her permission to publish it.
QMy Eldest daughter says I enable my youngest daughter. She has been going through a lot of changes, no drugs or alcohol – I give her advice but I’ve never given her money or chauffeured her around, because she lives 400 miles away.
She is married and has 3 young children 5-6-7 years old. I have never had a close relationship with my mother, but we’ve always been very close. She calls me many times a day and this is where my younger daughter says that I’m enabling her.
Because of the distance, I can’t keep going over to her house when she wants me. Am I enabling her?
A It's obvious that your daughter has her hands full, with three young children. There's nothing wrong with asking Mom for advice. However, her ultimate decision should be made with her husband -- not Mom.
When she asks you for advice, you should express your opinion. But ask her how she and her husband feels -- that type of thing. She has to add her input.
This may not be a codependency issue, but she may be dependent on getting help from you. She has to learn to trust her own decisions and bounce off ideas with her husband. Because she's a married woman, speaking to her more than once a day would probably not be appropriate also.
You may have been over-compensating for not having a good relationship with your own mother, but by loosening the reigns, the enabling that your younger daughter sees should disappear.
to get the right information on how to deal with her or pressure her with an intervention. Also, her doctor should be notified that she's combining prescription medication with alcohol. He can stop prescribing.
Your mom must have no alternative. Then, the family has the power to give her an ultimatum. ex. get help or leave the house, get help or dad leaves etc. -- but once it’s said, it can’t be retracted.
Alcoholics are manipulators and will pressure the weakest family member to get what they want, so everyone must stay united. Not easy, but it's effective.
If you have a question or a suggestion
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Next Month: Toxic people – Don’t let them ruin your day!!
If you or someone you know are interested in a consultation or has had a slip, coaching will help you.
For all other impulse control behaviors ex. compulsive eating, sex, computer addiction etc. Coaching is also an effective way to get help. For a free 30 minute session
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