Everyone likes to have new beginnings or cleanse for the new year. We want to rid ourselves of the things that hold us back and weigh us down. Sometimes that means losing certain people along with those extra holiday pounds.
It's difficult to have new beginnings and a positive attitude when you have toxic people in your life, specifically, an adult bully or hater. Unlike the playground tormentor of your past, this new-age bully has social media to use as his/her weapon of choice, but the bullets are still the same; words.
It could be the overly sarcastic Facebook "friend" that cunningly leaves snarky remarks when you have good news to share or just anyone that leaves you feeling picked-on, belittled, intimidated or insulted. They're there to tear you down, embarrass you, and rain on your parade.
These are broken people who feel insecure and ineffective in their own lives. They get irritated by and jealous of your happiness and success. Their intention is to hurt you with their verbal poison.
So what can you do to cleanse them from your life?
1. Spotlight Them
Bullies and antagonists are usually cowards. If they're not saying something rude behind your back or online, they may disguise it as a joke or teasing, except you're not laughing. Shine a light on their bad behavior by calmly calling them out as being unkind or ask them what exactly they meant by their comment. Simply saying, "And what exactly do you mean by that?" puts the spotlight on the bully and they are forced to be exposed along with their mean-spirited behavior and bad intentions. Make sure to use their full name when addressing them on social media. Stinging humor is also an effective tool for shutting down haters, like responding with; "Where's your off button?" Stand your ground but never engage them at their level.
2. Ignore Them
Sometimes no response at all is the best response. It's hard, but it renders your aggressor powerless. With no attention or reaction, they are forced to move along and look elsewhere for a fight. Think of it as, he who cares less wins. Narcissists and sociopaths thrive on upsetting and belittling you. They have no empathy or real emotional connections. Unable to feel real love and joy they can only feel good about themselves at someone else's expense. The only way to extract them from your life is to have no response at all, but if they persist...
3. Delete Them
Take ignoring them one step further. Extreme rudeness, name calling and repeat offenders need to be deleted and unfriended in real life and online. We hesitate to unfriend someone because we're more worried about their feelings then ours. Yes, it will be awkward at the next PTA meeting after you unfriend Cindy's husband for being an insulting ass, but you didn't do anything wrong. Let them feel awkward. It's your right to purge your life of those who aren't clapping for you. Wish them love and light and hit that "unfriend" button to detoxify your life.
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