“There are many good seeds in you. Therefore you must avoid every bad soil in the world.” ― Israelmore Ayivor
I suppose it can and should be said that some things will never change. Some people will never change either and the reality is, that is because they don’t know how to, they are stuck in their own vicious and destructive looping cycle. Some time back, toward the end of last year I made a decision to remove myself from environments and people which I found toxic for my way forward. Yes, I have mentioned this a couple of times in other posts previously because taking that step in my life has had such massively positive impact that it spills over into so many facets of “my world” that I find myself bringing it up again and again – like now.
I wanted to touch on this topic in a little more detail because much to my disappointment, but not to my surprise, I have been made aware of a particular situation unfolding which rings pretty close to home. Walking away from toxic people and situations is not as easy as you may think. The human ego will always fight for the right to justify and protect itself and once you get entangled in a battle of ego, there is no winner. It will always leave a bad taste in your mouth – no matter how much you may try to convince yourself “just” in revenge with internal dialogue. I have done it, you have done it – we all have.
When an individual is subjected to any kind of character assassination or personal attack, responding on the same “level” of bitterness is what most of us are conditioned to do and definitely feeds the ego, but what is generally overlooked is that whilst your ego is busy stuffing it’s face with satisfaction and revenge, your heart and soul are literally shrivelling up with disappointment and shame – whether your conscious mind and ego allow you to admit it or not. It does not matter which way you slice that piece of cake – at the end of the day it will only taste like regret and this is applicable for all parties involved who chose to succumb to the will of their ego.
If you take a moment to reflect on all the people you have met or encountered in some way throughout your life, you will no doubt be able to ascertain the difference between a person who will get upset about something legitimate, express that anger or frustration – deal with it and then move on - and another type of individual who seems to hold their primary focus on “seeking out” and/or “creating” negative situations and drama – justified or not, that is beside the point and not what I am getting at – my point here is to bring attention to the latter type of individual who frequently does this sort of thing. Closely observe their character, behaviour and actions - you will most likely discover a few of the things outlined below (if not all)…
People like this very often suffer from depression and hold on to deep seated trauma, they have incredibly low self-esteem, frequently feel sorry for themselves and/or their current circumstance/state in life (even though they will seldom let anybody see that side of things) – they are the ultimate victim and their list of perpetrators is long, they present themselves as overly humorous and jovial to the point of being borderline glib. They will often gravitate toward being “keyboard warriors” because this gives them a sense of power and control over others, without exposing their own vulnerabilities and lack of personal confidence in the real world. They will break others down (especially those they feel threatened by or are envious of) in a demonstrative and public manner in repeated attempts to fill their own personal voids.
There is no sense in going to war with an individual like this. They have mastered the art of conflict because they have been fighting with themselves for most of their lives. They will lie, scheme, pose, pretend and perform and no matter what you do or say they will protect themselves and validate their actions to the very end.
“Certainly the most destructive vice if you like, that a person can have. More than pride, which is supposedly the number one of the cardinal sins - is self pity. Self pity is the worst possible emotion anyone can have. And the most destructive. It is, to slightly paraphrase what Wilde said about hatred, and I think actually hatred's a subset of self pity and not the other way around - ' It destroys everything around it, except itself '. Self pity will destroy relationships, it'll destroy anything that's good, it will fulfill all the prophecies it makes and leave only itself. - Stephen Fry
Sure, it is sad really… to think that a person is in so much personal pain that they end up spending a good portion of their everyday attempting to destroy others so that they can feel better about themselves, which is like the grandest of unattainable goals because sabotage and bitterness are not the hands which will lead you to a place of contentment – they are merely “retail therapy” and I think we all know what buyer’s remorse feels like. However, having said this all – it needs to be added that as much as one can empathise with such a situation, it is not beyond ANY individuals power to change that (if the will is there) which in turn brings me to the statement that it is not my burden to carry or that of anybody else who may find themselves entangled in the dramas which such a person may weave.
“The main condition for the achievement of love is the overcoming of one's narcissism. The narcissistic orientation is one in which one experiences as real only that which exists within oneself, while the phenomena in the outside world have no reality in themselves, but are experienced only from the viewpoint of their being useful or dangerous to one. The opposite pole to narcissism is objectivity; it is the faculty to see other people and things as they are, objectively, and to be able to separate this objective picture from a picture which is formed by one's desires and fears.” ― Erich Fromm
My advice, from my own personal experience is simple – walk away. There are far greater things which await you in the opposite direction. Do not lower yourself by mirroring such toxic behaviours and if you catch yourself doing it – stop. Life is too short to squander it on bitterness, you will only stunt your own personal growth… and subject yourself to it often enough and you are likely to find yourself in a similar basket to theirs.
“It's rare for a toxic person to change their behavior. More often, the only thing that varies is their target and the blame they place. Because some toxic people are difficult to identify, keep in mind that a victim mindset is sometimes a red flag. So, listen when someone talks about their life and circumstances. If the list of people they blame is long... it's probably only a matter of time before you're on that list.” ― Steve Maraboli
Until next time...
Much Love from Cape Town, South Africa xxx
ALL IMAGES ARE MY PROPERTY UNLESS OTHERWISE CREDITED