Calm and Confidence Will Slay the Toxic People in Your Life

Two things to remember when communicating your gripes to an overly critical person: First, you're not going to change them, so don't try. Second, being silent sends the wrong message.

According to psychologist Margarita Tartakovsky, the best way to overcome the toxic influence of overly critical people is to disassociate with them. Of course, this isn't always a possibility; these folks tend to be in positions we can't simply avoid. They're our bosses, parents, co-workers, family, etc.


Tartakovsky (with help from family therapist Ashley Thorn) outlines several strategies for dealing with these people on an everyday basis. Let's look at those strategies and determine how they can be implemented.

There are two things to remember when communicating your gripes to an overly critical observer. First, you're not going to change them, so don't try. Second, being silent sends a tacit message that their criticisms are working, thus encouraging them to criticize you more. That's definitely not where you want to go.

Forgiveness is good for you.

Instead, you have to find the happy medium in which firmness is wrapped in kindness: "Thorn likened it to dealing with young kids: To set a limit with a 3-year-old, you don’t yell or belittle them. Instead, you’re clear and direct, and you can always end with mentioning what they mean to you."

That's a fun image, isn't it? Talking to your nosy co-worker like they're wearing Thomas the Tank Engine pajamas. Thorn says to allow your behavior and body language to reflect this new firm approach in which you effectively train your critic to be more cognizant of what is acceptable. All throughout, it's vital to maintain your own sense of self-worth — remember that you're worth sticking up for. And then keep sticking up for yourself. 

Read more at Psych Central.

Photo credit: Ollyy / Shutterstock

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Sponsored
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

Dead – yes, dead – tardigrade found beneath Antarctica

A completely unexpected discovery beneath the ice.

(Goldstein Lab/Wkikpedia/Tigerspaws/Big Think)
Surprising Science
  • Scientists find remains of a tardigrade and crustaceans in a deep, frozen Antarctic lake.
  • The creatures' origin is unknown, and further study is ongoing.
  • Biology speaks up about Antarctica's history.
Keep reading Show less

This 1997 Jeff Bezos interview proves he saw the future coming

Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com, explains his plan for success.

Technology & Innovation
  • Jeff Bezos had a clear vision for Amazon.com from the start.
  • He was inspired by a statistic he learned while working at a hedge fund: In the '90s, web usage was growing at 2,300% a year.
  • Bezos explains why books, in particular, make for a perfect item to sell on the internet.
Keep reading Show less

Why are women more religious than men? Because men are more willing to take risks.

It's one factor that can help explain the religiosity gap.

Photo credit: Alina Strong on Unsplash
Culture & Religion
  • Sociologists have long observed a gap between the religiosity of men and women.
  • A recent study used data from several national surveys to compare religiosity, risk-taking preferences and demographic information among more than 20,000 American adolescents.
  • The results suggest that risk-taking preferences might partly explain the gender differences in religiosity.
Keep reading Show less