Flip The Switch – Get Rid Of Toxic Friends

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toxic-friendsWe go through life fighting for control, knowing full-well the value in being able to call our own shots, be able to express our own opinions and having the freedom to pursue our dreams and wishes.

Shouldn't that also carry over to who we choose to spend time with?

The people around us influence us the most…

  • Immediate family
  • Co-workers
  • Managers/Bosses/Owners
  • Coaches and Teachers
  • Friends
  • Acquaintances or those that we choose to help

If I asked you right now the ratio of positive people or people who are "builders" and "growers" rather than complainers and destructive what would that ratio be?

Is it 70:30 (negative in the majority?)

Are you one of the lucky few who have it at about 50:50?

The real challenge is that you become who you are around.

Your beliefs, thoughts and actions all are reinforced by the people around you…especially the closest people, the people that you have let in to your life and influence your mind significantly.

Are They REALLY A Positive Influence?

The question is, are they a positive influence?

And if not, why are you still spending time with them?

We can't abandon people in their time of need of course, but you do have the right (in fact the responsibility) to protect your own beliefs, thoughts and emotional state because if you don't then all of the other people that you come into contact with are at risk of the negativity you will adopt.

Flip The Switch & Be Happier

So, if you are around toxic friends, family, or co-workers how do you change it up?

1. See Them For Who They Are

Be realistic, see people as how they really are instead of how you think they could be or how they may change.  You can spend a lifetime being miserable trying to change someone who simply will not alter their own thought and behavior patterns.  Don't live forever on the "hope" that someone will come around.  Give them a chance, be honest with them that this is their last chance and if they don't respond, then move on.

Ask yourself, does this person bring me up or bring me down?

Do they have a generally optimistic view on things or mostly pessimistic?

Are they a "builder" or a "crusher" when it comes to how they deal with you and other people?

Are they jealous of your achievements or are they genuinely happy for you?

Do they recognize when you help them or are they looking a gift horse in the mouth?

These questions will get you started with your analysis of the people that you spend the most time with in your life.

2. Make Your Intentions Clear

Often times we put up with behavior from others that we don't like or that brings us down but we do not effectively express how that behavior or thinking makes us feel nor do we put a firm stake in the ground that we will no longer tolerate negativity, tricks and deceit in our "inner circle".

Start by creating a clear vision of your future, how you will have your own inner circle of mutually supportive people that constantly seek solutions to problems, positive activities and to build something together that is much larger than any one person can build on their own.

Clearly articulate this to the people around you and let them know that how you spend your time and your focus going forward will be around this inner circle.  If the person you are talking to buys into that vision and makes strides toward changing to be part of your inner circle, great! If not, they will get less and less of your time.

It may seem mean, and the intention is not to alienate people who genuinely need help or assistance – only that a positive environment is the best structure to provide help and energy to those who need it the most.

3. Plan Your Inner Circle And Calculate Your Day

It's not enough to just make plans to change how you live your life, you must put that plan into action.

That means, for the time being, you micro-manage your days and weeks so that you are putting emphasis on growing your positive inner circle and then spending more time with them.

This may mean you start from 0 people today and grow it to 2 people by the end of the month through networking, contacts or just re-organizing your day.

It may mean you already have dozens of people in mind, you simply have to play the role of organizing more events where you can spend time together.

For instance, let's say there is a casual friend you really look up to and enjoy being with that you know would be great to spend more time with.  Contact them and plan a breakfast meeting, a coffee, a dinner or have them over for a BBQ.   Get to know each other and if things go well then suggest a weekly meetup – go ahead and talk about your idea to have your own inner circle.

Believe me, people who are positive know the value of being around other creative, positive people and will totally look forward to these types of events – especially if they believe they are mutually beneficial and fun.

Take control of how you spend your time and who you spend it with.  You will notice a huge weight off of your shoulder, new energy and creativity and suddenly notice that great things begin happening for you in your life.

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