There is no doubt that people come and go. Very few of the people we meet we call our friends. But how well do we know them?
You can say you're best friends with someone you've known for years, but has it ever occurred to you that you hang around with them because they are convenient? They are your drinking partner, dancing buddy, and personal therapist maybe, or because you pretty much see them every day. It is like your life is all about them.
It is true when people say you realise who your true friends are during your darkest hours.
It is also true that you as an individual are a combination of the five people you keep your company with.
If you keep your company with people who want to party all the time, who are happy living away from home, doesn't think ahead, and the sort of people to live in the moment, you will lose track of yourself. That happened to me. I lost all sight of my goals and was very lazy. The moment I removed these so-called friends from my life, I started to become successful. This is when I realised I kept toxic people around me for two years.
I now surround myself with people who are like-minded and have strong goals. People who thrive for success. Having done so, I improved so much as an individual. I now work in finance (my dream career), and I have started my own business. I could never have done this with my old friends around me.
You have to tell yourself, is the life you're living right now your dream life? Are your friends really your friends? Most of them are beside you because they want to know your secrets. Pay attention to the effort you put into them and how much effort you receive from them. Pay attention to how they treat you when you are going through a difficult time. Are they there for you or are they there to listen to your story? If you are having doubts about your friend... They are TOXIC. Friends who prove to you how appreciated you are and friends who have similar life goals are the people who should be around you. You shouldn't feel any negativity towards a true friend. If you are questioning their behaviour, they are not meant to be your friend, so do not force it.
Most people seek validation in other people. Don't be one of them. Learn to love yourself because then you can see toxic people from a mile away. The right friends will come into your life and stay. When you are constantly fighting for someone else’s attention, you are only hurting yourself.
Here are some examples of being associated with toxic people:
- You are paying for their drinks and food because they claim to be broke.
- They are very good listeners and always seem to give you the advice you want to hear but not what you need to hear.
- They share very personal stories to gain sympathy, or even worse, to try and have sex with you.
- Inconsistent behaviour — They change their character based on who they meet.
- Always say “I haven’t really spoken to anyone” during difficult times.
- Claim they want to avoid drama but the drama is always about them.
- When times get tough, they side the majority vote of the group not what is right because they always want to be part of the group.
- You start craving their attention, but don’t realise you are doing so.
- Losing sight of your goals just to fit in and do what they want to do.
These are examples based on my personal experiences. Everyone will see things differently but always remember who YOU are. Stay true to yourself and you won’t get hurt.