But ask yourself this question: are YOU apart of this toxic group?
We focus on how other people are toxic. We like to talk about how other people are no good, how negative other folks are, etc. But, we don't realize that WE OURSELVES could be toxic to others.
On my Facebook page, I would see several posts from my friends about "stupid people." Stupid people this, stupid people that. Now, I'm sure many of my Facebook friends would be reading this blog, so I need to choose my words carefully! If you are always posting about how stupid people are, then what does that say about you?
It says that you're easily frustrated, that you have no problems insulting other people if they "deserve it," and that you're vengeful. These are excellent ingredients for being a toxic person.
Since we're talking about Facebook, let me throw out a few more examples!
I have friends who are always posting about how much their lives suck. They can't find a job, or maybe they have a job that they hate, nothing is going well in their lives, and it feels like there is no God. What does that say about you?
It says that you're negative, have a poor outlook on life, and don't mind making other people feel sad. Those are some toxic ingredients!
I have atheist friends that love to make fun of religion and like to talk trash about my God. They love to post articles about how Christians are hypocrites, why you shouldn't believe in God, how science proves there is no God, etc. What does that say about you?
It says that you aren't culturally sensitive to others, that you have no problems disrespecting someone else's belief, and that you have some other unspoken issues that you need to deal with. You need a major detox, my friend!
Ah, and then there's those political zealots who like to make people feel bad for not agreeing with them. They insult government leaders, insult political parties, and make others feel bad for not agreeing with them. They also post degrading political photos. What does that say about you?
You're insensitive to others who have a different worldview, you have no respect for authority, and if you keep posting anti-government statuses, you may have the FBI and CIA keeping watch over you.
I don't want to be at home with you when the SWAT team comes jumping through your windows!
Oh, and I can't forget about those who post about bad relationships. They are always in a different relationship. They talk about how there are no good men or women out there. But then you'll find that they are in yet another relationship -- and then they're not in a relationship anymore. Then you see more posts about how frustrated they are with the world and how they're going to take a vow of celibacy. But guess what? They find themselves in another relationship. And they're posting all of their business on Facebook? What does this say about you?
No, I can't forget those who post inappropriate statuses on their Facebook. It could be a sick joke that's inappropriate (such as a joke about someone with special needs), a sex joke, foul language, or anything that you don't want your kids to see. What does that say about you?
If what you're posting doesn't contribute to anything positive in someone's life, then it's not a worthy post. It's a toxic one. If what you say brings people down, insults a group, reflects a poor view on life, and shows how bad your relationships are, then it's toxic.
Listen! People want to be uplifted! They want encouragement. Some of your friends may find some humor in your photos of you sticking your middle finger at the White House, but that humor does nothing positive for them.
Your posts about always being sick may make someone in your situation feel like they're not alone. But then again, you're just reminding them how poor their health is. That's downright depressing! After a while, you yourself won't want to hear about other people's sickness. You want to see that there is some hope out there for you!
Your other atheist friends may think it's funny that you've posted a ridiculous photo of Jesus doing something inappropriate. But you're also encouraging them to be insensitive to their friends' religious beliefs. It's really a way for you to spread hatred.
Yes, you and your other Republican friends may get a kick out of anti-Obama photos. Or you and your other Democratic friends may get a laugh out of Mormon jokes about Romney. But what you're doing is encouraging others to be disrespectful to government leaders.
If you're encouraging your friends to promote negativity in this world, you are a toxic person. If you are spreading hatred, disrespect, and a poor worldview to others, then you are a toxic person.
Do you know what a "toxin" in the body means? You've heard of detoxing your body or getting rid of toxins from the body. A toxin is anything that the body has no use for, and if that toxin remains, it could damage the body.
If you're a toxin, then you're damaging! You damage people's values, their beliefs, their sense of worth, their morality. If you encourage someone to be worst than they are, then you are a toxic person.
- Do you make others depress? You're toxic.
- Do you insult others? You're toxic.
- Are you an overall negative person? You're toxic.
- Are you insensitive to other people's values? You're toxic.
- Do you put other people down? You're toxic.
In the Bible, there's a beautiful passage that shows what makes a person not toxic. "Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable -- if anything is excellent or praiseworthy -- think about such things." (Philippians 4:8)
- Do you bring someone up? You're not toxic.
- Do you encourage peace? You're not toxic.
- Are you an overall positive person? You're not toxic.
- Do you refrain from insulting someone? You're not toxic.
- Can you have a friendly discussion without disrespect? You're not toxic.
- Do you refrain from saying or posting inappropriate things? You're not toxic.
- Are you inspiring others to be better? You're not toxic.
One of the last things you need is someone telling you that you're no good for them. I surely don't want to be defriended as someone's Facebook friend because I was too toxic for them. I don't want people to walk the other way when they see me. I don't want others to feel more depressed when I'm around. When I come into the room, I want others to think, "Man, I don't know why, but somehow I feel like everything is going to be all right!"
How do people feel when they're around you? Can they breathe easier or are they more stressed?