Getting Rid of the Toxic People in Your Life
By Donna Scoates-Nixon
Alice Walker, the author of the novel The Color Purple, once said “No person is your friend who demands your silence or denies your right to grow.”
I learned this the hard way with the first man in my love life. He was toxic with a capital “T”. In our private world he was verbally abusive, constantly trying to belittle me and damage my self-esteem. And he succeeded. He was a wealthy, well-dressed, mild-mannered Bully.
My young naïve eyes didn’t see it for way too long, but I sure felt it. His constant toxicity wore me down emotionally until I lost myself and many of my friends because they got tired of telling me what they saw that I didn't.
Well, if you're living with that person, and isolated from your friends, your world becomes very, very small. The words that are constantly being said to you will chip away at your soul, confidence, self-esteem, strength…
Unfortunately, at the time I was just so numb and worn down emotionally, I didn't even see it happening.
What's even worse is that when I did eventually see it, I still couldn't bring myself to leave because I didn't have the strength. I literally kept praying I'd wake up and have the strength to go…and then it happened.
One glorious day my prayers were answered and the fog of doubt and insecurity in my head lifted. It became crystal clear what a loser he was, and I left his ass in a heartbeat.
That was a lifetime ago, but it’s a part of my story and it helped shape me into the strong woman I am today who learned the importance of choosing the right people to share this precious life with.
CAN YOU MOVE AROUND THE CABIN FREELY?
The thing about toxic relationships is that when we’re in them, we rarely recognize how damaging they are.
Spirit, a therapist seen on Oprah’s Network said it this way.
“If you live in a world where you can’t “Move around the cabin freely,” you’re not really living your best life.”
I know that when I was in that toxic relationship, I wasn’t able to “move around the cabin freely”. I was walking on eggshells 24 seven, about what I did, what I said, and how I looked.
No one should live that way, so my goal is to help lift the fog of doubt and insecurity for those of you who might be stuck in an unhealthy relationship where you can’t “walk around the cabin freely.” It becomes your normal…but it is absolutely not normal. No one has the right to make you feel small or less than!
AN ABUSER OR AN EEYORE
Not all toxic relationships are as obvious as straight up abuse. It can be deceptively subtle; a slow & steady beat down of your self-esteem, or someone who tries to keep you down, so they feel better about themselves.
It may be a work relationship where you have to deal with a boss or a peer that leaves you drained and dreading going to work every day… an “EEYORE”. You know, the depressing AF*donkey in Winnie the Pooh who finds negativity in everything.
It could be someone in your world with a Toxic addiction that disrupts the life of everyone in their orbit, or a family member who has provided a lifetime of wearing your spirit down and killing your dreams one by one.
Whatever dark corner of our world they’re lurking in, there’s no doubt about it, there are people in our lives who are harmful to our health. Now is the time to recognize them and do something about it.
One of my favorite quotes is… “I’m making some changes in my life. If you don’t hear from me…you’re one of them.” Whoever comes to mind when you read that quote, needs a “Bye Felicia”.
WHEN YOU CAN’T SAY BYE
Here’s the thing, I realize that sometimes there are toxic people you just can’t completely delete from your life…some family members, or that Eeyore boss at a job you just can’t leave yet.
If you can’t leave, you can start taking your power back. You can choose to limit your time with them, walk away from them or stand up for yourself.
Stop letting them control you, manipulate you and push your buttons. Don’t let others rent space in your head! Stop letting them play Whack-A-Mole with your emotions or keep holding you back.
TinyBuddha.com had a post recently that says it all; “You can’t keep getting mad at people for sucking the life out of you – if you keep giving them the straw.”
Stop giving them the straw.
YOU DON’T NEED ANYONES PERMISSION
The people you associate with have a profound impact on how you feel, and what kind of life you live. I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase; ‘We become a part of who we’re around.’ That can be good for you or bad…depending on who you choose to be around.
Here’s the good news…you have the power to change who you’re around, and you don’t need anyone’s permission.
Whether its saying Bye, or limiting your time with them…Now is your time to get you back. No one has the right to take your best life away from you.
Find your voice and take your power back!
Focus on finding the ones who want you to have that best life and will support you as you go get it. Join social media groups dedicated to positivity and personal growth. Work with a Life Coach to help you achieve your goals, and most importantly…be sure to talk to someone so you don’t repeat the patterns and end up in another toxic relationship.
As you increase your associations with nourishing people, your new confidence will attract more positive people in your life. It’s the Law of Attraction. Like Attracts Like.
It worked for me. After that toxic relationship in my 20’s, I surrounded myself with people who encouraged me as I regained my confidence and strength. I eventually found my person who helped me shine brighter in love and life!
It all started with taking the critical step of removing the toxic waste from my life that one glorious day. Now it’s your turn.
This is an excerpt from my book “YOU DON’T NEED ANYONES PERMISSION TO LIVE YOUR BEST LIFE!” Available on Amazon, B&N, Indiebound.org.
Autographed copies are available on www.youdontneedanyonespermission.com
Look into our “BYE, FELICIA” Mini Course where I go into more detail and give you ways to identify the toxic people in your life as well as ways to identify the people who will be your new supportive tribe.
Donna Scoates-Nixon is a life coach, entrepreneur, author of the book You Don’t Need Anyone’s Permission to Live Your Best Life, and teacher of the online Master course based on the book. To learn more, please go to www.youdontneedanyonespermission.com