At some point in our lives, we may have to figure out how to end a toxic friendship that is not always easy. But when we realize that some relationships are turning negative for our well-being, it’s best to accept it and walk away.
It often happens that we resist ourselves and avoid ending negative friendships. Sometimes we unconsciously stay close to the wrong people. In today’s article, we’ll see how to end a toxic friendship if we don’t get what we want.
Features of a toxic friendship
Below we will discuss some of the main characteristics of a toxic friendship. The idea is for you to be able to recognize these behaviors in your daily life. This way, you’ll be able to distinguish between friendships that are worth keeping and those that don’t influence you well. Let’s take a look at it!
1. Even if they are with you, they are not with you
The physical presence of a person does not necessarily imply their company. Sometimes we can feel lonely when we spend time with a group of friends. Toxic friends don’t care about your opinions or concerns; they just want you to be with them and accept everything without asking.
2. Focus on your flaws in an offensive way
Friends help us understand which aspects we need to improve. Toxic relationships will focus on our flaws in a non-constructive way. In this way, they make us feel bad and will not provide any solution.
3. Make you feel questioned
Some people tend to question the behavior of others based on their personal criteria, which is not very empathetic. A true friend will not judge your decisions, but will understand them and express their opinion.
4. Thanks to them you are not in the spotlight
There are friends who require constant attention, and when for some reason the attention of others is on us, they cannot tolerate it. People who don’t allow others to be protagonists can’t be good friends – at least not in the right way.
5. Your acquaintance is lacking in consistency
Toxic friends do not act consistently with what they say and often contradict their actions. For example, they are people who say they support us in our plans but avoid getting involved in them at the same time.
This does not mean that all our friends have to be part of our personal projects, but when there is no consistency between speech and action, things get confusing. Ideally, friends should be honest and make their point clear.
Tips and tricks on how to end a toxic friendship
Now that you have reviewed the most common indicators of a non-positive toxic friendship, it’s time to look at some effective ways to end them that won’t cost you much.
1. Learn to set boundaries
To end a friendship that isn’t worthwhile, it’s important to know what you don’t want to negotiate.
In this sense, when we are able to maintain a firm stand on our ideals and principles, we will know that it is best to move away from those who do not meet the same criteria.
2. Be assertive
Assertive communication is an important escape from bad friendships. When we can communicate our decisions clearly, we feel at peace. The point is not to suppress the need to end the relationship.
Expressing yourself in an assertive way also means putting yourself in the other person’s shoes and understanding that they may not agree with your decision to distance themselves. However, we must be firm and stick to this idea. We will have to be succinct and respectful, explaining our motives.
3. Explain yourself before distancing yourself from a toxic friendship
Before you talk to the friend you want to distance yourself from, it’s a good idea to tell the other person about it. The goal is to prevent emotions from going uncontrollable during the conversation, which can result in a conflict.
4. Visualize the moment of the conversation
Visualization is about creating plausible scenarios in our minds, similar to those that can happen during a conversation. This way we will be less exposed to surprise situations.
When we stay in control in tense situations, we can better get out of them.
5. Respect the opinion of the other person
As we mentioned, it is likely that the other person will not like your decision. However, we must be firm in our approach. This does not mean that we should not force others to think as we do. It is important to accept the other person’s point of view.
Can a toxic friendship cease to be toxic?
You don’t always have to distance yourself from people: sometimes relationships can be improved. A toxic friendship can cease to be toxic as long as the parties involved can respect each other.
You don’t have to agree with your friends about everything, but you have to accept each other’s differences as much as possible.