It's really easy to claim someone else has toxic behavior. But do we ever look inside of ourselves to identify it? For good relationships, this can be a very beneficial exercise to address the areas that we ourselves can improve. Chances are that we all have some toxic behaviors and patterns and are not full aware of it. It is not the most pleasant thing to confront our flaws but it is the pathway to being a better person, right?
This article has examples of different kinds toxic behaviors we might have with the way to identify if we do.
1. Minimizing other's pain. Glossing over someone's suffering rather than let them feel and express it.
2. Constantly criticizing. Sometimes we think we are being helpful but really . . . we are criticizing. This is very common of parents with adult children.
3. Expressing anger indirectly. technical term of this is passive aggressive. We are not expressing our anger so doing little things to show it. And a common way is to make a joke that is a bit cutting trying to wrap our criticism and anger up in humor. So we think.
4. Avoiding true intimacy. you may start an emotional connection but make sure that the other person never gets too close. Keeping them at arms length. Sabotaging things.
5. Being absent in time of need. You tend to drift away when someone is in a difficult time. You may even start out there for them but disengage and disappear eventually.
6. Hiding your problems. Hiding big issues in your life makes some feel like you are secretive. It does not allow them to fully know you or get close and this takes a toll on the relationship.
7. Being constantly distracted. Oh is this timely. Who doesn't have a phone that they monitor on a regular basis these days? That's the obvious type of distraction. But further, when you neglect to place importance on your relationships because you are 'too busy' and find everything else has a higher priority, it is toxic.
Do you see yourself in any of these types of toxicity? Do you have any others you think should be included? And how do we get better? Step one, identifying the problem.