As you get older, you may notice that there are some people in your life whom you seem to have outgrown. Maybe they don’t seem very supportive of the things you want to do, or the plans you’ve made for your future. Whatever the case, you may be experiencing negative feelings whenever you’re around these friends who used to be so close to you. Negative people can harm your self-esteem. You may find yourself holding back from pursuing your dreams, all because you can’t bear to cut off people who don’t even care about your personal growth.
When they won’t let you grow, it’s time to go. Here are the eight kinds of negative people who may be in your life. Have a good look at who you surround yourself with.
The Obsessed Gossipers
They’re always checking out what’s happening with everyone else – not to be inspired by what they’re doing, but to talk about them to their friends. These people are very fixated on social status. They pay a lot of attention to who’s in a relationship or who’s breaking up…and even if the news is good, they can’t help but spin it negatively.
These people thrive on drama, and the problem is that drama is counter-productive to growth. If you stick with them, you learn to criticize others instead of focusing on yourself. How will you become a better person if you’re too busy sniping at other people’s faults?
The Emotional Vampires
Whenever you talk to them, they always need your help with something. When they don’t, they’re nowhere to be found. It seems that the only purpose of your friendship is to give them a helping hand.
I’m not saying that we should start counting good things friends do to each other, but if you have a friend who’s like this and never seems to be around to support you, you should seriously rethink your friendship. It’s not your job to fix people. You’re supposed to be a friend, not a repair shop.
They always belittle your efforts or find some way to discourage you from working towards your goals. Ironically, these goals may be ones that they were trying to meet themselves, but they got discouraged and it kills them inside to face the possibility that you may succeed.
The harder you work to get what you want – and the more you thrive – the worse their ridicule gets. Don’t expect these people to encourage you, even when you’re clearly doing well. They may even claim that you’re ditching them because you think you’re better than them, or turn your other friends against you.
The Victim In Distress
These friends are good at blaming anyone and anything else for bad things that happen to them. If you have friends like this, beware! They will never take responsibility for the things that go wrong. It doesn’t matter if they fought with someone, or were fired from their job, or had to end a long-term relationship. It’s always someone else’s fault, in their eyes.
These people will rarely outgrow this kind of immaturity, and it can be pretty infectious. Is this the kind of behavior you want to develop?
Everyone gets mad, but this friend always seems to be in a bad mood…or wants to stay in one. Nothing will ever please them. If someone does something nice for them, they’ll find something to criticize. They’re always picking out someone’s flaws and they like to argue over really insignificant things.
These people will never appreciate what they have, and they make hanging out with them very draining. Do you really want to be friends with someone who makes you feel like a used-up phone battery?
They may seem like fun friends, but they’re always in trouble. They also have responsibilities, but they prioritize things like partying and getting drunk instead. They’re the kind of friends who don’t take their future seriously – and if they do have plans, they put them on the back burner so they can go party.
This may have been fine when you were all young and carefree, but as you get older, you have to take better care of yourself and other people. Calling in sick because you were hungover is excusable maybe a couple of times, but these are the friends who make a habit out of it. Even if you change your habits to be responsible, being around them can make it hard to stay on track.
The “I-Told-You-So” Friend
One of the most irritating things in the world is hearing someone chime, “I told you so”, and this friend loves to tell people that every chance they get. They always want to be right, even if that means trampling on someone’s feelings or arguing in circles.
Even if these friends are wrong, they’ll defend their opinion to the bitter end. Anyone who disagrees with them is someone not worth listening to. These kinds of friends will always make you feel like you should always let them decide what is best. Don’t let these people stifle your inner voice!
The Narrow-Minded Sheep
Having different experiences is the key to personal development. Maybe you want to pick up a new hobby, or try a new activity. Maybe you want to do more volunteer work, or get more involved in your community.
These are the friends who will make you self-conscious about that. They will either shoot you down by saying it’s boring, or they will actively tell you that it’s a weird idea. You’ll end up getting discouraged and stay in the same routine.
Having friends like this will make you a people-pleaser, someone who rejects their own needs and ignores their instincts. If you’re not careful, staying in these friendships will cause valuable opportunities to slip by.
As you get older, you become more self-aware and conscious of what you want to accomplish in life. You also start to place more importance on respect and being in an environment that nurtures you. Your friends are no longer just people to have fun experiences with you, but people whom you feel should encourage you to be the best version of yourself!
Sometimes it’s better to take fewer people along the way, or even go it alone for a while. Not only will you rid yourself of emotional baggage from toxic friendships, but you will also learn to listen to your own voice and become more self-reliant.