If someone displays these 15 behaviours, they’re not a positive influence on your life

We sometimes include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Read our affiliate disclosure.

It’s important to surround yourself with positive and supportive people. But, unfortunately, that’s not always the case.

Some people have anything but a positive influence on our lives. But how do you recognize what behavior is harmful to you? 

You’re about to find out. 

1) Constant negativity

When someone constantly focuses on the negative aspects of situations, it starts draining your energy quickly and affects your outlook on life. 

From my own experience, it’s incredibly challenging to maintain a positive mindset when you’re surrounded by pessimism and negative people.

You start having the same view on things and believe nothing and no one can change things for the better. 

Find people that are uplifting and believe things can get better with hard work, lifelong learning, and support.

2) Lack of support

Speaking of support, when someone important in your life doesn’t support you and thinks what you’re trying to achieve is useless and stupid, you’ll be discouraged and demotivated. 

Positive relationships involve mutual encouragement and a willingness to help each other grow.

For example, you want to start a new business and have written a business plan and done your market research. 

Still, a good friend or family member is actively discouraging you from starting this venture because your actions shone a light on their own inactions and complacency. 

In this case, you’re not dealing only with unsupportiveness but with active discouragement, making it all that harder. 

3) Peer pressure

On the other side, we have people who encourage you to engage in negative or harmful behaviors against your well-being. 

They’re peer-pressuring you into substance abuse, skipping classes, reckless driving, making fun of others, etc.

You’d think that this sort of behavior stops in high school or college at the latest, but if you’ve ever seen movies like The Wolf of Wallstreet, you know that it’s not true.

 Resisting peer pressure is in many ways even more difficult in adult age in a workplace that’s well paid and comes with many benefits. Saying “no” to your boss often means you’re getting fired.

4) Controlling behavior

Some people just can’t help themselves and want to control everyone around them. It goes as far as micromanaging your actions and, in the case of some men, constant mansplaining. 

Any attempts to control your decisions and actions limit your freedom and personal growth. Healthy relationships have individual autonomy and privileges at the heart of them.

So if your friend, partner, family member, or coworker is incredibly controlling, they don’t have a positive influence. 

On the contrary, they’re not letting you think for yourself and evolve.

5) Endlessly draining your energy

Constant negativity, controlling behavior, and other types of behavior we still have to cover all drain your energy.

If someone consistently leaves you feeling emotionally exhausted or drained, it means your relationship has an unhealthy dynamic. Positive relationships should uplift and energize you.

Yet, some people are like emotional vampires sucking and sucking your energy until there’s nothing left. 

But it gets worse.

6) Sabotage

If someone actively tries to undermine your efforts or goals, they’re obviously not contributing positively to your life. 

I already mentioned an example of when someone actively discourages you. But they might also regularly criticize your ideas, downplay your achievements, or actively work to diminish the value of your efforts.

For example, they might consistently doubt your skills and abilities, making you question your own capabilities or even withhold crucial information or resources that could help you succeed in a certain situation. 

In the workplace, someone might take credit for your ideas, innovations, or creative work, thus undermining your intellectual property and potential success.

If you don’t stand up for yourself, they might succeed. 

7) Guilt-tripping

Guilt-tripping is almost an everyday occurrence for some people. They manipulate your emotions through guilt and create a toxic cycle. 

You feel compelled to make decisions based on guilt rather than your own well-being, causing resentment over time.

Many moms are guilty of this. We’ve seen them do it in popular TV shows like Everybody Loves Raymond. But I can attest to that from my own experience, too. 

The problem for people that love to guilt-trip others into doing things their way is that they get a taste of it when they first do it. 

After that, they start doing it all the time because they realize it’s such a powerful tactic to get others to do what they want. 

8) Manipulation

Guilt-tripping others is a form of manipulation. Manipulative people try to control your actions, emotions, or decisions for their benefit. Their negative behavior erodes your independence and results in feelings of confusion and mistrust.

Above all, their behavior has a harmful influence on your life.

Manipulation includes silent treatment, love-bombing, gaslighting, triangulation, threats or ultimatums, emotional manipulation, and more. 

9) Dishonesty

Consistent dishonesty creates a lack of trust and transparency in any relationship. Building a healthy connection is difficult when you can’t rely on the other person to be truthful.

If someone is being dishonest or even hiding vital information you need to make an informed decision, they have a negative influence on your life. 

For instance, instead of genuinely apologizing for their mistakes, they offer insincere apologies to avoid taking responsibility for their actions.

Or they invent elaborate stories or scenarios to manipulate your emotions or gain sympathy.

In most cases, you will have to confront them about it and even cut ties if they continue doing it. 

10) Jealousy

Jealousy breeds negativity and resentment. Some people display their jealousy and envy by downplaying your accomplishments or refusing to acknowledge your successes, among other things.

They might also constantly try to outdo you or turn everything into a competition and try to one-up your experiences or achievements to feel superior.

That’s not normal behavior. A truly positive influence celebrates your successes and encourages your happiness instead of feeling envious.

11) Constant drama

People who thrive on drama create unnecessary stress and chaos in your life. When you have to deal with these kinds of people, you’re distracted from your own goals and well-being.

They thrive on stirring up arguments, disagreements, or conflicts, even over minor issues. Some love to blow things out of proportion, turning minor incidents into major crises.

They consistently portray themselves as victims in situations, even when their actions are at the root of the problem.

All in all, their behavior isn’t getting better any time soon. It’s best to distance yourself when they start seriously affecting your life and day-to-day activities. 

12) Toxic criticism

While constructive criticism can help you improve, toxic criticism tears you down without offering any helpful solutions. It often results in lowered self-esteem and confidence.

When everything you do isn’t right for them, you know you’re not the problem. The problem is their behavior and their messed-up and controlling mindset. 

They obviously have the need to micromanage your actions and can’t help themselves but criticize you when you do something that’s not right in their mind. 

13) Disrespect

When a person is disrespectful towards you, it shows a lack of consideration for your feelings and boundaries. Respect isn’t negotiable and is a fundamental element of any healthy relationship.

Yet, we often see signs of disrespect in our daily lives and relationships with friends, family, coworkers, and even our romantic partners. 

Commanding respect involves a combination of self-confidence, assertiveness, clear communication, and treating others with respect.

But when nothing else helps, personally, I’m not above cutting ties with someone that’s beyond repair. 

14) Self-centeredness

Self-centeredness and selfishness are as common as apple pie. In a world where many people live for social media and do everything to portray themselves favorably, it’s all too expected. 

But the issue for you is that a self-centered person disregards your needs and prioritizes their own interests. You ask or tell them something, and it simply goes in one ear and out the other.

I’m not saying you should be their top priority, far from it. But a balanced relationship requires mutual consideration.

15) Lack of empathy

Empathy is the ability to understand and share another person’s feelings. Without empathy, we can’t connect on a deep and meaningful level.

So when someone shows a lack of empathy toward you and your experiences, they also can’t be supportive and have a positive influence on your life. 

Final thoughts

Now that you had the time to think of other people’s behaviors, do you think they positively influence you? 

Or do some of them display negative tendencies that might hold you back?

Adrian Volenik

Adrian has years of experience in the field of personal development and building wealth. Both physical and spiritual. He has a deep understanding of the human mind and a passion for helping people enhance their lives. Adrian loves to share practical tips and insights that can help readers achieve their personal and professional goals. He has lived in several European countries and has now settled in Portugal with his family. When he’s not writing, he enjoys going to the beach, hiking, drinking sangria, and spending time with his wife and son.

If you notice these 12 behaviors someone might be mirroring you

If you do these 11 things together, you’re probably a tight knit family