Toxic People: 5 Ways to a Happy and Fulfilling Life

Identify and Avoid Toxic People

There’s an old myth that frogs will pull down other frogs trying to escape a pot of boiling water. The same trait we Filipinos are known of: Pulling down other people who are succeeding and getting ahead in life. This is the trait we call “crab mentality”. It’s like putting crabs in a bucket, no one can escape because, instead of assisting each other reach the top, they are pulling each other down. If toxic people can’t have it, neither can you. You need to identify and avoid toxic people to improve and have a happy and fulfilling life.

crab mentality

In our life, it’s unfortunate that there are people who will always resist our growth. These can be our friends, family, relatives, neighbors and often workmates. This crab mentality of people whom we can call “toxic” may feel like our improvements expose their meagerness. Or maybe they think that we will no longer be in their life if we improve too much.

Therefore, instead of helping or encouraging us, they unconsciously threaten our happiness. How do we know if we are dealing with a toxic person and how can we avoid them and live a happy life? Read through these 5 ways to identify and avoid them.

They are the ones that tell you: “You are not good enough”

Toxic people will always tell you that you shouldn’t do what you’re doing because you are not capable of doing it.

In the last 6 years of working in the hospitality industry I have dealt with people like this. After a short period of time, I got promoted and my “friends” were telling me I shouldn’t accept the promotion because I could not handle the job.

Whenever somebody tells you that you can’t do it, Prove Them Wrong.” Do what you think is right for you and never let their insecurity destroy you. Toxic people don’t want to see you succeed, instead, they will try to stop you from achieving something. You and only You have the control over your life, never give anyone the pleasure to have the control over it. Are you in control of your life?

They are Always Right and You’re Always Wrong

Toxic people will always think of themselves as a superior and always right even when they are not. They never admit when they messed up, instead, they will blame it on you. My sister-in-law and I had a conversation about 10 months ago that prompted me to block all her family’s accounts on Facebook. That made my brother hate me, according to him I think highly of myself, he told our sister that I am such a stuck-up. He could have asked me the reason why I blocked them but instead, he let his wife’s toxic attitude poison him.

Do not reason with them. Sometimes, it’s very tempting to creep into toxicity by arguing or fighting, and that’s precisely what toxic people do and you are not like them. Just end the communication and do not feed the trolls. Have you ever fallen into toxicity of a family member?

They Provoke You and Play Innocent

Some of the poisonous people come disguised as a relative. Not long ago I hire a relative to work in our small business. It was a win-win situation for both of us, she needed a work, with a free place to stay, and no utilities to pay. Our relationships were in good terms, until she started talking behind my back and sending me messages telling me I have no concern with all my employees, and when I see her and ask her about it she would play innocent, she would say that there was no problem since she already message it to me. Seriously?

Never give them the satisfaction of seeing you aggravated, instead keep your calm and never let them get under your skin. Family and relative has a peculiar way of getting under your skin and directly influencing your thoughts and behaviors, I’ve experience this. When she told me that I have no concern to my employees, I had a sleepless night trying to think what have I done wrong to her that made her to say that to me. You don’t need to have a sleepless night like me, relatives don’t have a magical license to screw up your life and remember that their issues are not your fault. Have you dealt with a toxic relative?

They Would Rather Gossip than Discuss Ideas

Toxic people like to gossip, for them it’s the climax of their day if they can gossip about other people’s life. Instead of discussing new ideas or talk about the ways how they can improve their life, they find joy in talking about how other people are doing. When my unmarried husband and I started dating after 3 years of working in the same company, we were the “talk of the town”. Our workmates talked about how we are not good for each other and that our relationship won’t last, and how did I get to date Him. They even told my assistant to tell me to stop flirting with John.

Avoid these people. Walk away from them, run if you have to, but never participate in their gossip”. It’s a toxic habit of those with tacky poor character and you’re not one of them. Have you been a “talk of the town”?


They are Judgmental and Always Exaggerate

Toxic people will wait and look for something wrong in what you do. We all get it wrong sometimes, nobody’s perfect, right? But toxic people will make sure that you know it. They will judge you and take a swipe at your self-esteem. They always exaggerate and it’s hard to defend yourself against this kind of manipulation.

Beware of these people. We are allowed to make mistakes. Mistakes are our stepping stone to success, so never allow these people to steal your self-esteem just because you made a mistake.


It’s very important that we avoid toxic people in our life. They bring nothing but negativity. Anyone that can make you feel bad about yourself is toxic. Trust me, cutting your ties with toxic people is the best life changing decision you’ll ever make. Letting go of toxic people is not an act of ruthlessness, it’s an act of self-care. To a great degree, cutting toxic people out sends a key message to yourself. You will see your value. Prioritize your own happiness over someone else’s dysfunction. Surround yourself with positive people and know your self-worth, it’s time to improve your happiness.

I’m sure you have encountered toxic people in your life, have you cut ties with those people? How did you do it? What was the outcome?

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Crisly Todorovic

Crisly Todorovic

This Post Has 90 Comments

  1. Jessica

    Surrounding yourself with positivity give you a better quality of life after all. Ropes pull two ways but it’s easier to pull someone down than to pull someone up.

  2. maryosadolor

    Unfortunately, these are people that we will come across in our journey of life, but the good thing is that we also have people like you to help us sail through. Thanks

  3. neatohollo

    So true, sadly. Super informative post and a great read, thank you!

  4. Ana

    I am in the process of filtering out the toxic people in my life. In my life I’ve found there’s a toxic person around every corner.

  5. R. Alexandria

    I was just talking to a co-worker about this. How some people are satisfied to be miserable forever and so why would they care if they are making you miserable? It’s important to be careful that you take care of yourself and don’t let other people bring you down.

  6. MyVeteranWoman

    I made the decision to get rid of all the negative toxic people in my life and that included family. My life has been so great since!

  7. Sara

    A really interesting post and a really important thing to keep in mind. Being around toxic people is not good for anyone, but propably everyone has worse and better qualities.

  8. So relatable, i think such toxicity is prevalent more in high context cultures where individual goals and values are no acknowledged rather scene as rebellion. Coming from the subcontinent I myself have experienced this. But it gets better once you start identifying and cutting loose from such people. Great read ????

  9. annajeanharris2017

    Hey, Crisly! Thanks for sharing with us the patterns and issues that come up when interacting with someone who is toxic. I cut ties with someone in my life who had abused me as a child. It took time to feel fully free of his influence (and it’s still in progress), but I think about him WAY less now than in the past, and I think it’s partly because I cut ties with him. I would be willing to reverse the cut-off, but he would have some major changing to do first. ????

  10. This Taraf

    I would say this is not the story of any particular country, the story is same almost everywhere in the world. We keep coming across such people and we should know how and when to filter them. Great read, thanks ????

  11. Yadira Castro

    You nailed it with this post. Definitely need to keep toxic people at a respectable distance. I know what you’re talking about I didn’t know some people can be that way but, there are some bullies, that you need to stay away from for your own good.

  12. Jojo Hua

    These tips are all so true. I was always the one that found it hard to let go of people in my life. I didn’t like the idea of not having them in my life anymore, no matter how bad they were for me. But then I realised that it’s not so bad and that if they were meant to contribute to your life, they would be. I’ve slowly let go of a lot of negative people in my life and the ones that I can’t remove (immediate family members for example), I limit my time spent with them.

  13. Rochelle

    100% agreed…
    and sad to say sometimes the toxic people are your family????.
    so even though you dont want to avoid them, you have to! bcuz they are the one whose destroying yourself…

  14. lifewithmrst

    This is so true, I try to keep away from people like that but it is sometimes impossible to escape them. I would rather build up than tear down

  15. adventures

    Goodness, it sounds like people in the Philippines have the same problems we do in US. I guess somehow I had hoped that other countries didn’t have the crab mentality as badly as we do here. I applaud you for noticing these toxic people and hopefully eliminating them from your life.

  16. tengkusyamil

    What if the toxic person is your parent? I have a friend with a very toxic mother. He just doesnt know what to do.

    1. Crisly Zerrudo

      My best friend is dealing with the same problem as your friend. My advice to her is to talk to her mom and make her understand how unhappy she’s making her, but her mom seems not to care so my next advice is to keep her distance from her toxic mother. It is difficult, but if you want to have a peaceful and happy life you have to do it. As I mentioned in my blog, you and only you have the control over your life. Never give anyone the pleasure to have the control over it, even if it is your own parents. If they are not right, they are not in a position to control your happiness.

  17. Prajakta

    We find these people at every step of our life. It’s very important to stay put and avoid the rather than falling prey to their tactics. Great post

  18. bellafilippi

    I learned how to do this a few months ago and have been so amazing. Toxic people tend to put us down. Great article!

  19. Stephanie

    This is such a great post! I realize that so much of my anxiety comes from toxic people who I allow to continue to be toxic in my definitely needs to stop! Thanks for breaking it down and giving me a little more motivation to say goodbye!

    1. Crisly Zerrudo

      I’m glad that I did. Live your life the way you want it and don’t let toxic people intoxicate you. Let go of them and live a peaceful and fulfilling life. Life is great without those people.

  20. Taunnie

    It is unfortunate how many toxic people there are. I do try to avoid them as much as possible but it is hard when they are in your family. Thank you so much, this is just what I needed to hear.

  21. wonderlandofgemini

    Love this post 🙂

  22. Elyssia

    Sad but true and now I’m older I can tell when a friendship is toxic great tips and very informative x

  23. TeeShares

    This is sooo true! Honestly, there’re such people in life. It actually annoys me when they “provoke then play innocent”.. The ones I know will then say, “you’re not forgiving” when they’re the ones who keep hurting and when you try to address the issue they either play victims or deny! When you switch off they poke again… grrr

    1. Crisly Zerrudo

      It is very frustrating to deal with this people, I cut ties with them, I blocked them from any social media we ate connected, I blocked them on my phone, and I avoided seeing them.

  24. Michelle

    Great article, unfortunately I’ve dealt with these people all my life

    1. Crisly Zerrudo

      Michele it must be so hard dealing with these people all your life, but now have courage to let go of these people and clean your life grom toxic, you deserve to be happy.

  25. Jessica Stam

    I love this. I feel like I’m finally at the stage in my life where I am okay with cutting people out and only surrounding myself with genuine friends. Thanks for the tips!

  26. marge97

    When I was younger I couldn’t see the difference between good and “toxic” people what made my childhood very difficult. I’m so glad that I can avoid toxic people right now. You’re tips are great! If I had known that when I was 10 you’d be my hero!! ❤

    1. Crisly Zerrudo

      We learn from our experiences, whether it’s good or bad. I’m glad that today you can identify and avoid them before they can intoxicate your life.

  27. Susan Colgan

    Great post. I didn’t even know it but I really needed to read this today. Thank you so much.

  28. Hanny

    Wow! you nailed it with this post. I’ve had to deal with 4 out of the 5, people telling me I’m not good enough and people who always thought they were right and I was wrong. I really like some of the ways explained on how to avoid them, never really thought much on how to, I would just ignore all of them. I definitely appreciate posts like these.

  29. vazric

    It is very simple to detect toxic and poisonous people yet very different to understand and see them when they are too close to you, the human ignore for a higher reason and hope led us to keep these people around for some quiet time until they hurt us badly. Sometimes we just wanna be the strong one, the loving and forgiving one so later on we can be happy about ourselves without realizing that we were the victim not the strong one. And sometimes its begging for love or the other to not feel lonely… Still we should be strong and clean up our relations and people around us.

  30. BehindTheSchmile

    I recently wrote a very similar post so I can definitely relate! It’s crazy how much of an impact toxic people can have on your mindset! Great post- I agree with all of these points.

  31. breakthefog

    Toxic people have really sad and misfortunate lives, so they start focusing on others happiness and try to break them down, instead of working on improving their own. Unfortunately, they are not strong enough and take the strength from others.

  32. zirvin1

    Great information! Thank you!

  33. Cecil

    Great information. I never let toxic people past the surface of my life, but I must always stay open and give others the space to change. I hope that my life will be an example to them.

  34. eclectickristal

    Sometimes it is hard to get rid of toxic people. After a while you do not realize that they are toxic.I agree with what you can saying.

  35. runawayanna

    Great post Crisly! I’m afraid it is the same all over the world, and you just have to learn how to deal with it. And your advice in 100% accurate – just stay away from them, let them be in their own misery.
    All the best!

  36. Corinne Evans

    Great article. Anyone with these traits should definitely be cut out of your life, if possible.

  37. Fahim

    Its been six months I’m in the situation facing some problem with one of my co-worker that I can’t avoid. Actually I was in confusion if he really making me mad. And yes, “nobody is perfect”, strongly agreeing with you. Thanks for resolving my issue.

  38. Lois

    It is hard to identify toxic people sometimes because they are so deceptive. This is good information.

  39. alyssasheadaley

    Wow, such a great read ! I have recently been dealing with toxic relationships and the fact that they were stressing me out to where I could not focus on what I needed to.

  40. sbrooks0387

    reading threw this and i can id everything in some “family” members i have had to cut off. i must show this to my husband, maybe if he sees it in writing by someone else, he will understand.

  41. Twinspirational

    Great post. I had one very toxic friend and everyone gave her a pass about her bad behavior. She recently refused to acknowledge her bad behavior towards me and I wanted an apology. Now that I’ve cut her out of my life I’m so much happier.

    1. Crisly Zerrudo

      Glad to hear you have cut ties with toxic friend and found happiness.

  42. Neha

    Life is full with negative people and in that time reading this type of motivational article makes worth the time spent here. Loved this post.

    1. Crisly Zerrudo

      Glad that we provided you with some motivation.

  43. Surrounding oneself with positive people is the first trick to positive progress. This article is superb!

  44. julivaglobal

    While I was reading this I can so identify how many persons that I have encountered that were like this.

  45. Ketki Gadre

    Such an amazing post! It is really difficult to avoid toxic people but once identified one should not get attached.

  46. TheSuperMomLife

    I’m pretty sure I have at least one of these people in my circle. I haven’t spoken to one of them in years.

  47. Yunus Caner Güner

    Great article, well done.

  48. Jared Grant

    I think we’ve all had people like this in our lives. It’s too bad but I think there are some people that you just need to avoid.

  49. Prabashi Hirunika

    this is something everyone will face in their life. My toxic people were non other than my relations. It was like like they had cameras hooked in every corner of the town to find out about me and gossip. sad

  50. Deserted_Queen

    We face a lot of toxic people in our life, it’s really important to identify them and to avoid them. Great post..!!

  51. Chai

    Totally agree with this article. They are indeed negative in life and wanted yours to be one.

  52. krish

    As we grow in life there will be many around who will try to.create obstacle..physical and mental…we have to prepare ourselves mentally to ignore it overcome these obstacles…
    Beautiful writeup..pract prac suggestions..

  53. Devyani Ray

    Wow- the traits fit some of the people I know. Good that I avoid them. Nice job on the article!

  54. Holistic fish

    Couldn’t agree more! Life is too short to be around those who don’t enhance it

  55. Nina

    Traveling taught me one very important lesson- your fellow Filipinos will be the one to pull you down because they’re envious. Be careful the people whom you trust.

  56. Neil Alvin Nicerio

    If there is a toxic person near you be sure to stay away. They are draining life energy out of you

  57. Sreekar Harinatha

    You are absolutely right. We do come across all these kinds of people as we go on in our lives. The trick is to identify them and stay away I guess!

  58. Based on this article I know a few toxic people in my life, they drain you of everything!

  59. amayszingblogs

    Life is full of toxic I feel it right now! because my surrounding pressure me for everything. I feel tired and I really want to happy 🙁

  60. The Beauty Flicks

    We always met such types of people in our lives…The best way to escape from these people is ignore them and do what you want to do…

  61. Prashant

    I wouldn’t use the word toxic for people, after all we all are human being. I would just let go and not be so judgmental about them. They are ignorant of wisdom. I am also sure we might have done or said something which is felt bad by others. The only way to deal is self confidence and Meditation. Accept people as they are, let go and you would be more happier.

  62. TheKitchenDoc

    I like to surround myself with positive people who are just a delight to be around but sometimes it is hard to move away when a toxic one comes around. It has to be done!

  63. Krish

    We all come across variety of people in life..good ..bad….there are many who discourage…try to.pull down..but we have to make our own choices and discard these people and move on…
    God bless you

  64. Stephanie Vazquez

    “They provoke you and play innocent” is so true! They make you feel like you’re the bad person… I’ve gone my share of toxic people and after letting them go I could breathe!

  65. Jennifer Dagi

    Beautiful article! I’ve learned how to get rid of toxic and negative people in my life so they don’t drain my positive energy.

  66. bdhebert

    This was a very interesting article! I really appreciate your expose’ of toxic people

  67. viv

    Ah, what you said about not trying to reason with toxic people — this I needed to hear. There really is no point. Thank you for that reminder!

  68. Ritik Sharma

    Nice article. The conclusion make sense and i agree with many terms.

  69. Aakanksha

    This is great advice although yes I find toxic people everywhere!

  70. Nina

    The best lesson is always be careful of the people you trust. Don’t let them pull you into the world of negativity. If they have nothing good to stay about others, chances are they are the same with you.

  71. Toxic people are killers and getting rid of them is always the best thing to do. I love these helpful ways on how to do just that.

  72. Lindsay

    I totally agree with this whole blog post. This is what I am currently trying to do is weed out the people who are doing me harm and bring in the right people who will be positive.

  73. Jennifer Dagi

    I’ve always tried to get rid of toxic and negative people around me. They drain my positive energy and leave me unproductive. Not cool at all!

  74. Adaezeonpoint Grossi

    Toxic people are everywhere, the worse is that they try to play a certain role in your life to get informations that can use to destroy you. I have learnt to deal with them my way.

    As my African mom will say ” he that is about to eat with the devil should use a very long spoon.

  75. As much as I would want to avoid toxic people in my life and severe ties, part of me is just so Ms Congeniality. Like I want to be friends with everybody. But you are right, they only bring negativity and cause more harm in one’s life than good! Distancing oneself would definitely mean self-care! Thanks for such a great post.

  76. melisvida

    I don’t think its just a Filipino saying because hispanics are the same. Ive learned in life that as you grow not everyone will grow with you.

  77. Jeferson Beluso

    O, by all means, we have to avoid them. They are contagious and once we are infected by them, they will suck all our energy and thus toxic that only needs elimination, so we have to act before they even get to our system because getting rid of them is doubly hard…..

  78. Blair Villanueva

    I gained skills sets how to detect toxic people, and i have to cut them out in my system for my own sanity. Never regrets it.

  79. vballangel5

    It’s better to toss those toxic people to the side

  80. Neil Alvin Nicerio

    Toxic people are contagious. I have a few pals at work who are toxic. I try to avoid them as much as possible.


    We have all come across such. Within family or friendships. Yes having them around for too long can be very draining. There are some of them, I accepted that i had to let them go….

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