Change Becomes You
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Change Becomes You

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The Four Magic Phrases I Use when Dealing with Toxic People

Toxic people. We all have them at work, and they cause conflict, fill meetings with drama, and drain our energy. How to deal?

How do you respond to a toxic person?

In the world we live in, we inevitably encounter people who are either toxic to our mental health or can make us feel miserable.

I used to be one of those who responded in kind to an angry or rude email, and I'd say awful things back and make the person angrier.

At first, I'd feel bad, but then that anger would spur me on to say even worse things.

Yes, I am not proud of my actions, It's a vicious cycle, and I was a part of it.

Today I'm not interested in getting into a fight, and I have no interest in winning a war of words.

When I find myself in a situation with a Toxic person, I don't fight fire with fire anymore.

I'm not particularly eager to shoot back, but I believe you need to know the magic phrases for responding to people trying to drag you into their drama.

I have learned that it gives me time to regain my composure, no matter what some say.

Having a ton of empathy for the other person, I still can say, "I'm not willing to do this."

The reason I call these five phrases "magic" is that they help me respond to difficult people in a way that gives me the best chance of still being friends with them afterward.

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I Don't Know If You're Aware Of It

Toxic people suck the life out of me, and they make me feel small, insignificant, and worthless.

At the same time, I am well aware that Toxic people have often experienced much emotional trauma in their lives, such as bullying or abuse.

They use the pain inside them to look for a way to make themselves feel better by putting others down.

This can lead to a highly toxic person on my hands, and unlike many other toxic situations, I may not be able to fix this one on my own if I am not aware of it.

The same goes for Toxic people, and that's why I always start by giving them the benefit of the doubt by saying:

"I don't know if you're aware, but.."

This is a great way to gently point something out and give the other person space to walk away from me.

This is love at its highest form.

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Why are you asking me?

It's incredible what happens the moment I ask this question.

Understand that 'toxic' behavior comes from hurt, from being completely disconnected from every aspect of their life and feeling unable to control anything at all when they feel alone or isolated.

This is what is reflected back to me when encountering a toxic person, and it is the main reason why toxic people are so hard to deal with.

The question “Why are you asking?” forces me to be gentle with myself and not get triggered.

An above all know this:

If someone loves me, they are proud of telling me why they are asking

They have my best interest at heart and are on my side

If someone is being toxic, they want to hide it or not be proud of it

I know that I have to hold up my end to talk to them to improve their behavior. And of course…I am still responsible for ensuring that I am taken good care of!

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Why would you say that to me?

I mean that; why would you say that?

This question puts the Toxic person in the spotlight and forces them out of the darkness into the light where their behavior is exposed.

The Toxic person has to explain, which is never easy and highly uncomfortable.

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Why would you do that?

What do you mean? The Toxic person may ask in an attempt to dodge the question and escape the discomfort they are projecting on to me.

I mean; Why would you choose to do that to me?

If The Toxic person keeps pushing me, I reply:

Do you not understand my question? And I gently repeat:

Why would you choose to do that to me?

When I ask this question, I am actually saying,

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Tell me more. It's interesting.

This question turns up the heat and pressure on the Toxic person, leaving him or her with no were to hide.

Like with the other phrases, It's incredible what's reflected the moment when I look into the Toxic person's eyes and say:

Tell me more!

This question forces me to be gentle with myself and doesn't get triggered, and I put all the weight on The Toxic person; it works like a charm.

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Summary

No one is perfect, and we’re all capable of doing some downright shitty things.

When someone says something hurtful to me, it can be hard not to take it personally. It’s easy to give in and respond to a mean comment with a snarky reply, but that almost always causes the situation to escalate and leads to more problems.

I used to let toxic comments get under my skin constantly. Then, I started using the five magic phrases any time someone was nasty.

The next time you're feeling defensive or that you're about to lose your temper, try using one of the magic phrases. You'll be amazed at how well it works.

If you are dealing with narcissistic people and have tried the five magic questions without feeling the magic, you have to go into ninja-mode and say this:

1. "I don't want to talk about it with you."

2. "That's your opinion."

3. "I don't care what you think. You take care now."

4. "I don't have to justify my actions to you."

I wish you the best friend.

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