We all know how important it is to recognize toxic people in your life, and how they can negatively impact your mental health. But what if you're the one that's toxic? You might not even realize your behavior is toxic, and you might not mean to upset those around you, but it's always important to recognize when you might be the one that's the problem so that you can adjust your behavior and make sure never to push your loved ones away! Here are some signs you might be a toxic person.
1. You ALWAYS talk about yourself
One key sign of being a toxic person is if you suffocate the conversation with everything to do with you. You might not even realize you're dominating the conversation, but if you are, it's a surefire sign you're more selfish when it comes to interactions with others. Toxic people often push their favourite topic on others at every opportunity: themselves! Even if you don't have anything interesting to say, you make it about you.
Image source/ PinterestWhen you're a toxic person, you also make sure to bring the topic right back around to you, even if someone changes the subject - and even if it's something you don't know about.Original content sourced from Femanin.com
2. People feel drained after being with you
Some people are drains and some people are radiators. Some fill you with a sense of wellbeing and energy but others make you feel like lying in a darkened room and never facing life again. Do you suck the life from others like an emotional vampire? If you do you are definitely toxic. But if nobody tells you that you drain them, you might not necessarily know that this is what you're subjecting other people to...
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A key thing to do is be very aware of other people's body language, like if they're looking tired, looking away from you, or looking like they want nothing better than to leave!
3. People avoid you
Do you find yourself walking down the street only to find that the person coming towards you has suddenly disappeared down a side street or headed to the other side of the road? You may start wondering why everyone is suddenly busy or 'washing their hair' whenever you suggest a night on the town. This is a clear indication that your company is toxic and people don't want to subject themselves to that.
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Of course, people making excuses can also be a sign they're toxic themselves if they're always letting you down. So figure out if you're the one doing something wrong - or them!
4. Or never speak to you again and ghost you
That new friend you met up with at the gym on a number of occasions has suddenly changed their training times. You have to ask the question of yourself, 'Is this my doing?' The answer is probably ...yes. It's time to start being a better person if people are so readily dropping you and cutting you out of their life. You might have been giving off enough red flags for people to know straight away you might be toxic.
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A lot of people ghost toxic people because it's easier than trying to explain to them their offputting behavior when toxic people likely won't own up to it and refuse to admit it.
5. You are very critical of other people
Whatever someone tells you, you feel that sense of superiority. You are classier, better looking, you have nicer things, and your dress sense is far superior. You know without a doubt that you are more intelligent and interesting. Stop! You are absolutely toxic if you think this way. There's nothing that makes you instantly better than others, and you definitely shouldn't be openly critical of other people you meet.
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A key trait of a toxic person is how often they put other people down. People become drained being with you because you make their self-esteem plummet to the floor!
6. People feel worse about themselves after being with you
You bump into an old acquaintance you haven't seen for ages. Firstly, you look them up and down, straightaway causing them to check their fly zip. You proceed by letting them know how well you're doing and how great your life is whilst at the same time sympathising about the dreadful state of theirs. This is quite clearly the behaviour of a toxic person, and its behavior that will lead to them wanting to avoid you.
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If you're a true friend - or even just a nice person to strangers - you will be trying to lift them up, not constantly knock them down. So be more aware of what you're saying!
7. You are VERY jealous of people
When you hear that someone has done something well, or they get something new, or they are happy and have achieved something - rather than making you pleased for them all you can feel is a bitter sense of jealousy. And, when the green-eyed monster rears its ugly head, it is never a good trait. Toxic people get jealous because really, deep down, they want to be the best of everything, so they don't like it if others are successful.
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It's okay if you want to be a successful person, but your first reaction to a loved one having some good news shouldn't be jealousy and to then resent them for their success.
8. You are controlling
Toxic people like to be in control. And they love to control the people they are with in terms of what they are doing or how they think. This is ALWAYS a toxic trait to have. If you find yourself trying to control people for your own gain or own sense of satisfaction, it's time to take a good look in the mirror. Toxic people often control both actions and other people's feelings - which is why they feel superior putting people down.
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You don't like to be on the backfoot, because this means you're vulnerable to the whims of others. A controlling nature is always something to watch out for with a toxic person.
9. You manipulate other people emotionally
Have you ever noticed yourself using emotional manipulation against people? For example, perhaps you pretend you are upset or hurt to make someone feel guilty or to switch the guilt around when you are actually in the wrong. If this sounds like you, you could well
be a toxic person. Toxic people are most likely to manipulate emotions to get their way, because it's all about mind games rather than physical occurrences.
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This is also why toxic people are likely to gaslight sometimes, because if a victim brings up emotional manipulation, they'll likely deny that they ever did anything wrong.
10. You never think you are in the wrong
Never being able to accept that you are in the wrong, or never even being able to contemplate the fact that you actually might be in the wrong - can make it very difficult for anybody to reason with you. And the likelihood is...that sometimes you ARE wrong. So, it's only decent to own up to it. Toxic people are so draining to deal with because it's like arguing with a brick wall, and this makes people not want to speak to you.
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The mark of a good person isn't to never make mistakes, but to own up to those mistakes. A toxic person will never do this because they can't stand to be wrong - and to be less.
11. You always blame other people
'Well, it wasn't me it was all their fault', 'They're always trying to make me look bad', why does everyone always have it so much easier than me' - if this sounds like you, then it sounds like you always blame other people and never take accountability for you own actions and the part YOU play. This is a toxic ploy that also makes others doubt themselves, or makes everyone around you think they're the ones in the wrong!
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Those who spend too long around toxic people will very quickly get tired of always being blamed for things, and the toxic person never taking accountability for anything.
12. You take, take, take
When was the last time you did something for someone else for no reason other to help them or to be kind? When was the last time you did a selfless act? If you can't remember, then perhaps you are taking advantage of people's kindness without ever repaying it. While you can get away with this for a while, people will very quickly cotton on to the fact that they never get anything in return from you, either as a friend, colleague or partner.
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A relationship with a toxic person is always one-sided, and it can be frustrating for a person to constantly be giving to a toxic person and never getting anything in return.
13. Your moods are up and down
Perhaps people do not know which version of you they will see that day and so people feel as though they have to tread very carefully in case they upset you or make you react a certain way. Nobody wants to have to tread on eggshells around somebody because they can't predict them. That isn't to say that it's your fault if you have good and bad days - and we all know how hormones affect us - but it's more the reason for your mood swings...
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Toxic people can often have more downs than ups, which causes them to drag down everyone around them, too, and only contact people to rant at them about the negative.
14. You put people down in front of others
You put other people down, and in some way, it makes you feel better about yourself having had them humiliated in front of a bunch of people and made them feel small about themselves. You get a kick out of it. Is this you? If so...I'm afraid to say you're a toxic person. Putting someone down is one thing, but if you purposefully do it in front of others, then it can be a power play that a toxic person is known for.
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Toxic people will often look to get people on side, too, which can be another reason they like to humiliate in a group setting, in the hope others will agree with them.
15. You don't let go of a grudge
It can be really hard to let go of things, nobody's denying it. Especially if somebody has hurt you. But it's important to be able to let go of grudges - otherwise it eats away at you. And, holding on to that hate will only bring more negativity to your door. Toxic people often hold on to grudges because they like to use it as ammunition should the opportunity ever crop up again, even if it's years down the line when they can use it!
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A toxic person will also often pretend like they have forgiven someone, to seem like the bigger person. But secretly they will remember the wrongdoing, and remind them of that.
16. You make lots of drama
Drama, drama, drama. Are you the drama? Maybe. If it follows you wherever you go and you always seem to be somehow in the middle of it - it sounds like it's you. Continuously creating unnecessary drama and causing trouble and stirring the pot can most certainly be a toxic trait. Toxic people will often thrive on negativity, and particularly if they can cause other people to feel bad, as a master manipulator.
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Toxic people will also likely make mountains out of molehills so that they can dump on people close to them. It's likely they won't even want any advice, they just want to rant!
17. You begrudge other people's successes
A key characteristic of a toxic person is their inability to be happy or celebrate other people for their successes. Secretly, you want to hear about other people failing rather than succeeding and you are actually happy when you hear negative things, because it makes you feel better about yourself. It's likely you'll look to make backhanded compliments or sly digs if someone talks about something they're happy about.
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It's also likely a toxic person will be upset if success takes someone away from them, like a partner getting promoted and working more hours so that they end up seeing them less.
18. You play the victim
Woe is me...everyone's always against me, I'm always the victim. This can be a tactic some people use to manipulate people and make them feel sorry for you - maybe in order to gain something. But always playing the victim is a sign that you might be a toxic person. It also plays into the idea that the whole world revolves around you, and people should stop and listen to your woes when you need them to.
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They'll also likely ignore any good advice, because they don't actually want solutions, they want to be able to continue complaining about it for as long as possible!
19. You peer pressure people
Peer pressuring somebody is never a good thing. If you have realised that you manipulate people into doing something even if they don't want to do something, or you make them feel bad for not joining in - then you are peer pressuring them. And it's toxic. Full stop. A good friend - or a good person - will never pressure others into doing something they don't want to do, especially after they've said no!
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Once again, peer pressure is a power play for a toxic person to do so that they can get other people to do what they want, or to end up looking like the superior person.
20. You make threats if you don't get what you want
Have you ever caught yourself saying things such as, 'if you don't do that, I'll end our relationship' or 'I won't be friends with you anymore', just because you haven't got your own way - you are a toxic person. These kinds of threats are not and cannot be acceptable ways to treat people. Toxic people very easily turn to anger because their manipulation isn't working as they'd hoped, so they get defensive.
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Especially in romantic relationships, toxic partners will often give unfair ultimatums in order to take control back of a situation after an argument or relationship troubles.
21. You will not compromise
Compromise is an important part in any relationship - whether it's romantic or a friendship. But, if, all that matters to you is what YOU want, rather than what other people might want or need - then you are certainly not compromising. And eventually people might get tired of having to always do what you want. Refusing to compromise can also count for refusing to change the way you think or feel about things.
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This is especially true if you're offloading on someone and they give you fair feedback. You might refuse to compromise on your wants and needs even if their advice makes sense!
22. You will tell people's secrets
When someone confides in you and reveals a secret to you it is a huge sign of trust that they put in you. If you then tell somebody's secret, you are betraying that trust. In fact, if you are a toxic person, you may even enjoy the power of having someone's secret and being able to tell somebody else. It's likely that you'll continue acting trustworthy with the original person, though, and lie about having revealed anything.
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It's also likely that you spill other people's secrets to new people because you want them to like you, or you want to get into their good graces. Gossip can be a natural go-to.
23. You make a lot of passive aggressive comments
'Fine, Whatever.' 'That's really good for someone like you'... does this sound like anyone? If it sounds like you, you are the master of passive aggressive comments and maybe you don't even realise. Which is by no means a good thing, and it can be a very toxic trait. Especially in romantic relationships, passive aggression can make you seem like you're the 'calmer' one and it's the other person's fault.
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Backhanded compliments and being in a sulky mood are commonplace for someone who is toxic - rather than just addressing the issue in a mature way and talking about it.
24. You make everything into a competition
This is a very classic case of 'you went to Tenerife, but I went to 'Elevenerife'. And a lot of people unknowingly do this. Maybe you don't realise that when someone tells you something you have to try, and one up them. But it's something to be aware of and to stop doing. The only way you can feel in control or more powerful than others - a toxic need in itself - is to feel like you've 'won' the competition.
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It's a way you can feel superior by putting other people down if they've lost. It's also a dangerous game to play in relationships because you should support your partner instead.
25. People have told you about your behavior
When people have told you about your behavior and that you are displaying toxic traits - it's time to take a look and change things. People don't usually like to call other people out because nobody (most people) likes confrontation. So, it must be bad if someone is telling you are toxic. This can be difficult to hear from a romantic partner because likely you'll get defensive and tell them it's all in their head!
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It's also unlikely that a toxic person will reflect and try to change their behavior so when someone tells you this, it's likely that you'll just deny it ever happening.
26. You don't care about other's feelings
Maybe you are too focused on your own feelings to even contemplate other people's feelings and think about somebody else other than yourself. But eventually if people realize that you don't care about them, then they probably won't continue to care about you either. Toxic people only value what others can do for them and their own feelings, and not the impact they're having on the way others feel.
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This is also demonstrated through the fact you'll likely emotionally manipulate or gaslight as a toxic person, because you don't care about the repercussions on their feelings.
27. You gaslight people
If you are a toxic person, you make people doubt themselves by questioning their version and telling them that your version is the correct one, you make them believe that they have not remembered it right. This is a seriously toxic trait which you need to stop. Gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse, too, and it's common in a lot of toxic romantic partners trying to control their other half for their benefit.
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Toxic people like to constantly spin their own version of events to suit how they want to be perceived, which is why they'll gaslight when it suits them to alter the narrative.
28. You are pessimistic
It's great to be able to be positive and always see the silver lining. But when you are a pessimist, you are the opposite. You always see the bad in things and people. You always expect the worst. And you may always think about the bad things in every situation which is not only draining for everybody else, but also you. A key sign of toxicity is when they always drag down other people, or the mood.
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Toxic people are very much lovers of controlling moods and emotions, which is a lot easier to do when it's more negative and they can milk that for all it's worth!
29. You constantly complain
For that reason, it's also no surprise toxic people complain - A LOT. Moan, moan and more moaning. Some people are a glass half empty kind of person and manage to spin anything into a negative, even if it should have been a great experience. They manage to complain about something or find something to nit-pick rather than just appreciating the positives. Toxic people also likely complain AT people, rather than a back and forth conversation.
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You might also use complaining as a way to ruin other people's success. If they share happy news with you, you'll likely change the subject to complain about something wrong.
30. You try to make others the same as you
Maybe deep down, you realise you are a toxic person, or you realise that you can be mean or show bad traits. Instead of trying to work on yourself and better yourself, a toxic person instead wants to make everyone else the same to justify their actions. It's also a way of taking control, so that you feel like nobody is better than you and on a more equal footing, rather than being more successful.
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It's also very true that misery loves company, after all, so you'll often want people to be on the same level as you, and will happily bring them down to achieve that!
31. If You Give Criticism, It's Never Constructive
You probably don't even know the meaning of the term constructive criticism, as the only criticism you ever give is with the intent of hurting someone, nit-picking at them or demeaning them in order to make them feel less of themselves. You might be insecure yourself, and want to cause that insecurity in other people. You might even make things up to criticize just so you can put the other person down.
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It's also likely as a toxic person that you'll frame criticism as constructive, even though it's not. You'll always defend being rude as trying to help them with your 'advice'.
32. You Give Advice When It's Never Asked
Speaking of advice: advice is helpful if someone wants or needs it - but you give advice even when it's not asked for, and probably at the most inappropriate moments. This could be when a person has made it clear its none of your business but you have to get your opinion in any way. You might also use it to act superior and like you know better than them, or to bring a conversation back around to you.
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You might also act like you have a wealth of experience in certain areas, which is why you can give advice, even though you don't really know much about it - you just pretend you do!
33. You Get Satisfaction Out Of Ruining People's Happiness
You just can't help that urge to rain on someone's parade. You see someone really happy or sharing good news and you just know you have to say or do something to put a dampener on it. A lot of this can come from a place of envy. This is one of the biggest signs of a toxic person, as they will do anything to make a person feel as small as possible without any guilt over it. It's like you take their happiness for your own.
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But the sad fact is, you're never really happy, and even though you feel satisfaction at taking other people's success, it's short-lived and you'll just turn negative again.
34. You Like To Provoke People Into Arguments
You might enjoy doing this on some of the bigger topics, like personal beliefs or religion. You take satisfaction in disagreeing with a certain viewpoint just to cause an argument. You might dismiss other people's beliefs and offer your own controversial opinion a lot of the time. There's no way you can have a mature debate if your opinion differs, because your opinion is the 'right one', no matter what.
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A toxic person might even start personal jabs just to get an argument going, because they run off the adrenaline of it. You're happy to ridicule so that you get a reaction.
35. You Find Yourself Copying Other People's Mannerisms And Behaviors
This could also apply to copying other things about a person, too, like their work or hobbies. You don't do this because you want to be the person or you look up to them - you most likely do it because you want to take what they find good about themselves and make it your own, so that they feel like part of themselves is being stolen or copied in an unflattering way. Then you can prove that you can do it 'better'.
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It can also be a way to manipulate them, as people often react positively to people shadowing their body language, so you do it to get people on your side when you need it.
36. You Like Making People Feel Guilty If Things Don't Go Your Way
You might be aware (or unaware) of your own sense of entitlement, which means you get annoyed when things don't go your way. If this is the case, you might go out of your way to make people feel guilty for things, just so you can make them feel bad enough to let you get what you want. This can also put people around you on edge all the time if they always feel like they're doing something wrong in your eyes.
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This can also play into that passive aggression, too. You make people feel guilty with comments like 'oh so I'm not invited, I'll just stay in alone then' and never let it drop.
37. You Try To Get People To Feel Sorry For You
A toxic person of course needs to make people feel sorry for them, too, instead of seeing them for what they really are. You want people to feel sorry for you and you'll certainly try to make it so in order to give yourself that power back. You aren't a stranger to a pity party if you feel someone has wronged you, in order to make them have to be the ones to make it up to you instead. And you'll keep it going for as long as possible!
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This is also a key trait of a toxic partner amidst a breakup. As soon as they've been called out for making you unhappy, they'll act like the victim/make you feel sorry for them.
38. You Never Say Sorry
You'll get people to feel sorry for you, all right, but you'll never say sorry about anything yourself. You don't like to accept accountability for things you've done wrong, so saying sorry is not something you often do - if at all! You think that saying sorry would mean taking responsibility and most of the time you don't think you should have to say sorry, so you don't. You also think apologizing is for the weak!
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If you ever do say sorry, it won't be a genuine apology at all, and you'll only do it so that you seem like the 'better' person which you can then use to your advantage.
39. But If You Do Say Sorry, It's Only For Manipulation
If there's a rare occasion you do apologize, it's only because you want them to forgive you and not because you actually mean it. You don't intend to change your behavior or do anything different to avoid it happening again, you're only saying sorry so they'll say it's okay and then think you're being understanding. It's likely you'll then say 'I apologised didn't I!' if you argue in future about it.
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You're also likely keeping a score of how many times you've said sorry, so down the line you can say 'I'm the more reasonable one - look, I always apologize when you don't!'
40. You Feel And/Or Act Superior
Because of course you think you're superior, and you want everyone else to think that, too. You like being the center of attention, and most - if not all - of the time, you feel like you deserve to be the center of attention. You might feel like a lot of people you meet are beneath you a little bit. You don't like seeing the success of others, either, as you like to be the most superior, which is why you drag others down!
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This can also be why you're drawn to powerful jobs or positions like managerial roles, because you like to be seen as successful and in charge, no matter the circumstance.
41. Chronic Sarcasm Is Your Go-To
They say that sarcasm is the lowest form of wit, and it's also the chosen form of wit for toxic people. Most people are sarcastic every now and again in a funny way, like enjoyable rapport with friends or sarcasm accompanied with a smile. But there's a more malicious form of sarcasm which isn't playful at all, such as the type made to just make someone feel bad or humiliate them in front of others.
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You love using sarcasm the most because it's one of the best ways you can quickly put someone down by making them look like an idiot or knocking their confidence.
42. If You See Someone Excelling At Something, Your First Instinct Is To Sabotage It
You don't feel very comfortable with other people's success, and your gut instinct might be to try and think of ways to sabotage it. This could be making someone nervous before an important job interview, making someone feel bad about a new job or just sabotaging any chance someone else has at celebration. You might also drop toxic comments in messages or on-the-go that makes them doubt themselves.
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You could also do a lot of self-sabotage or relationship sabotage through your toxic ways, whether you mean to or not. You don't know how to simply be happy for someone.
43. You're Not Averse To Name Calling Or Verbal Abuse
As we mentioned before, being toxic and gaslighting is a form of emotional/psychological abuse, but that doesn't mean you're averse to more obvious abuse like name-calling. This might be your go-to when you get into an argument, or when you're angry about something. This is the only way you know how to control a situation - by getting the upper hand by using name calling and abuse to belittle someone you're mad at.
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This is also likely to be very derogatory and unfair, like instead of listening to an upset partner's valid points when they're crying, you'll just call them 'crazy' or 'psycho'.
44. You Like To Micromanage Other People's Lives
You like to have some control over what the people in your life do, where they go and who they see. A lot of time you might not like them seeing anyone else but you. You might ask a lot of the people so that their time is taken up with you, and they don't have time left for the other things they want to do. It's likely you also ask people to do things for you while also trying to control how they do it.
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If you live with someone, you might ask them to do chores only to then tell them how they're doing it wrong and get on their back about every little step of what they're doing.
45. You Might Feel Entitled To A Portion Of Someone's Hard-Earned Pay
This could be a partner most likely, especially if you are living with them, but can apply to anyone. You may feel like you want to take over their finances or control how they work and how they get paid, like you're owed a sum of it for being in their life. Toxic people will also be very crafty about sharing payments for this. A partner might 'kindly' offer to pay for a meal, only to throw it back in the person's face if they have an argument.
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A toxic person also won't like it if their partner is earning more than them, so they'll likely try to claim some of it as their own or say it should be shared equally.
46. You See Other People's Accomplishments As Competition Rather Than Celebration
You might find it very easy to admire someone else's achievements at first - or certainly make them feel that way. Then you start to think how you can better them, or see any accomplishment as a challenge that you need to do better and get one up on them. If your partner has received a promotion or pay rise, your next mission will be to get one, too - but one that's a bit better than there's, of course.
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It's likely you'll also keep tabs on things people have going right for them, so you can put a plan of action into place about the steps you can take to do better!
47. You Project Onto Other People - Especially When Embarrassed
If someone makes you feel inadequate, then your immediate reaction is to get angry and rant at them. You feel the instant need to defend yourself and prove that you're not inadequate, and you might then switch it round on the other person to show that they're the ones who have the problem. Toxic people like to project because it's another way of manipulating, or even gaslighting, the other person.
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Toxic people rarely like to look inwardly so their first response into being called out about something is to make it out like it's the other person's fault instead.
48. You'll Always Try To Prove The Other Person Is Toxic - Not You
If someone calls you out for toxic traits, you'll do everything you can to show the other person as the one who is toxic - even if it's not true. You'll project all your anger and envy onto them and make sure you come up with a way to prove that they're the problem. To make it worse, you'll also likely try to ruin their reputation in other people's eyes by telling others that they're a toxic person.
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A key example of this can be after a breakup, if you tell everyone - including new partners - that your ex was a toxic person and was the one who ruined the relationship.
49. You Just Can't Stop Lying Or Cheating (Or Both)
Lying comes very easily to you, and you find yourself doing it most of the time. You're not against betraying someone's trust, and you might even find yourself cheating a lot if you're in relationships. You might often feel you're living a double life, with the face you show to others, and the person you are in private. And one thing's for certain - if someone catches you, you'll still try to deny it.
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If you're found of wrongdoing like cheating, you'll be quick to blame your partner by saying they're the ones who treated you 'badly' and made you want to cheat on them.
50. You Never Own Your Problems
With this in mind, it's also why you can never own or work past your problems - because you'll never admit to them, or never admit to any wrongdoing. Problems? What problems? If you do have a problem (which you don't, or so you tell yourself) that's for other people to fix. You can't take adult responsibility for anything and have to be mollycoddled most of the time for other people to sort it out.
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A toxic person likes to cause problems for other people, whilst also complaining that they're the one with all the problems that require other people's attention all the time!