Wellness Wednesday: Recognizing Toxic Friendships

How to recognize toxic friendships & people in your life... and what to do about it by popular Florida lifestyle blogger The Modern Savvy

Do you have people in your life that if you are being honest with yourself, don’t bring out the best version of you?

Toxic friendships and people can come in many different forms, from the blatantly toxic to those who simply never make you feel good about yourself.

For this Wellness Wednesday, your goal is to identify the toxic friendships in your life and start to remove them from your circle.

You wouldn’t let your child or best friend have toxic people in your life, and neither should you.

A toxic person, whether it’s a old or new friend, a colleague or anyone else, can make you feel really bad about yourself.

This is not OK.

I realized years ago that sadly, I had a friend who was incredibly good to me when I was really sick. But as my blog and PR business grew, things felt different. My counselor said — and I feel awkward typing this — that jealousy likely was at play. That this friend liked the “successful” role, and wasn’t as kind when I started to flourish.

It took me a long time to work myself out of that toxic situation, but it was coming to grips with the situation that took the longest.

There’s room for all of us to have big success.

So whether you have a so-called best friend, a colleague, a family member or someone on the “periphery,” it’s time you are honest with yourself.

A toxic person can be detrimental to you, physically and mentally.

Imagine how much better you would feel if you removed this person (or people!) from your life.

So who am I referring to?

Here are examples of toxic friendships in your life:

Anyone who criticizes and critiques you

Someone who constantly complains

Someone who doesn’t make you feel good

Anyone who is not happy for your happiness

Everything is a constant competition

It’s clear she doesn’t believe in you and your dreams

You find them bringing you down more than building you up

Anyone who regularly appears jealous of you

Someone who keeps disappointing you

Anyone that you find yourself constantly talking/complaining about

They don’t value your time, and regularly cancel on you

They are always asking something, but are never available to return the favor (be it with their time, ideas or physical help)

Anyone who negatively impacts your other relationships

You constantly feel “less than” when you’re with them

You simply dread seeing them



Let’s be honest: we all have at least one person in our life like this. Sometimes it’s nearly impossible to remove them, let’s say it’s family, an ex-spouse or your boss. The key is to recognize it so you can set up boundaries to protect yourself.

As the mantra says, you are only as good and strong as the people you surround yourself with.

If you feel the person is worth it, consider having an open dialogue and see if things

If they are someone inevitably in your life, take comments with a grain of salt, eliminate such frequent interaction, be polite and don’t engage or feed into the toxic behaviors; they’re looking for a charge or engagement from you.

Otherwise, I know it’s terrible but sometimes friend “break ups” are necessary.

The key takeaway for this Wellness Wednesday:

You cannot continue to invest in people who do not invest in you and feed your soul. 


More Great Content

Join the Conversation

  • Reply
    January 22, 2018 at 2:44 PM

    Toxic relationships are terrible for one’s soul and mental health. I’m gotten very strict about with whom I spend my time, and the people I keep around me. Sadly, I even had to cut my parents out of my life many years ago. However, I know there are situations (such as work) when it’s not possible to just cut someone out of my life… In that case, I just minimize my time with them and really don’t give their negativity much thought. I remind myself that just because they choose to be negative does not mean I have to let that make me feel negative about myself. I just accept the fact that they may be miserable and their toxicity is an outward demonstration of that. I don’t take that sh*t personally.

  • Reply
    January 21, 2018 at 9:37 PM

    This is honestly such a helpful post. A couple of years ago I let a friend to go that was just that… Toxic. It was a very difficult decision but in the long run the very best for my own mental health. Never easy but always important to inventory these things from time to time.

  • Reply
    January 21, 2018 at 9:43 AM

    This is such a nice read, and truly on point. If the thought of seeing your friend doesnt make you feel comfortable, then maybe it’s time to cut-off your relationship. Also, friends should be helping each other and back one another. Which reminds me of the quote from the kids on Stranger Things – “Friends Dont Lie”

    Jessica | notjessfashion.com

  • Reply
    Alison | So Chic Life
    January 18, 2018 at 1:24 PM

    Oh I’ve been wanting to write a post about this for several years but you said it so much better. Such great insight on tips. I’ve realized when someone shows you their true colors and it doesn’t feel right – tread lightly and don’t go into the friendship until you are sure. It’s so hard sometimes especially when you first meet someone! Thanks for sharing your experience.

  • Reply
    Olivia Poncelet
    January 18, 2018 at 8:21 AM

    Interesting article and advices!

    Have a wonderful day !
    Olivia Poncelet <3

  • Reply
    January 17, 2018 at 12:51 PM

    Such great advice. It’s really hard to let a friendship go, but it’s one of those short term pain/long term gain things. I had a really good friend who I had known since I was little. The friendship wasn’t really toxic, but it was exhausting. After she was the maid of honor in my wedding and obligatory-related events had quieted down, I decided I was going to stop putting in the effort and let her instigate talking, getting together etc. What happened was nothing, and the friendship slowly faded away. It was really sad, and it still is when I think about it, but I don’t miss the stress and the feeling that I didn’t matter enough. We all deserve to have fulfilling, two-sided relationships that make us feel good…we just have to remind ourselves every once in a while.


  • Reply
    Shira Rosenbluth
    January 17, 2018 at 12:27 PM

    I love this! I’ve decided that 2018 is the year I will no longer waste being around toxic people. Life is way, way too short!


  • Reply
    Kimberly Smith
    January 17, 2018 at 7:43 AM

    So agree with this and I’ve done the same in the past year – it’s sometimes hard to see them for what they are & it’s always difficult to cut ties with a girlfriend because they are harder to come by the older we get!

  • Leave a Reply

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

    Send this to friend