Life is full of relationships, giving ample opportunity for toxicity to rear its ugly head and find a home. Think about the people in your immediate circle—those you see on a daily basis. Do your interactions with any of them make you feel ashamed, embarrassed, or negative? Then think about people in your broader circle—those you see on a weekly or monthly basis—and ask yourself the same question.
What are some other words that describe toxicity? Thinking of synonyms can help you identify toxic relationships where you didn’t expect to see one. I call these other words the “faces” of toxicity because they identify all the different ways toxicity can appear in our lives. I’ll start with a couple ideas, and then you can take it away from there. Let’s have some fun!
Toxic makes me think of . . .
How many “faces” can you think of? Plenty more, I’m sure! Feel free to use bullet points to list your responses.
Now that you have the list, think about someone in your circle who fits one of the faces. What has made your interaction with them a toxic one? Were you initially aware of their disposition? How have you dealt with that person’s toxicity?
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