The world is made up of all sorts.
I don’t personally believe in inherently bad people, but I recognize that there is plenty of bad behavior out there.
Sadly, that means we should tread very cautiously when letting certain folks into our hearts and lives.
There are some types of people who you should never trust.
Let’s take a look at them…
1) People with zero self-awareness
I have to put this one first on the list, and here’s why:
Pretty much all of our capacity for personal development rests on our ability to see ourselves clearly and objectively.
I don’t care who you are, every single one of us is flawed in some way. This means we all will benefit from growth.
When someone is completely lacking in self-awareness they are incapable of reflecting on their behavior.
They don’t stop to question themselves or how they may impact those around them.
They are often oblivious to their flaws and failings. But what is worse, they’re not open to correcting this.
They remain a prisoner of their ignorance.
I’ve let people go from my life in the past who it became apparent were lacking in any self-awareness. Because sadly, you are wasting your breath.
No matter what you say or strategies you try to get through to them, they are incapable of hearing you.
Even someone who has shown themselves to be untrustworthy in the past still has the potential to change.
A leopard CAN change its spots.
But only if they are capable of seeing the error of their ways and want to do things differently next time.
Without self-awareness, that’s unlikely to ever happen.
I’ve always been wary of the sweet talkers in life.
I know that part of this is because I grew up in a very blunt and straight-talking family.
We never really dished out the mushy lovey-dovey stuff. Neither did flattery flow freely amongst us all.
But I’ve also been sort of glad of that.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s really important to show our appreciation and affection and let people know how we feel about them.
But I’m talking about those types of people who are so extra about it.
They shower you with affection and warm words, to the extent that it smacks of insincerity.
It usually seems too good to be true, because it is.
Nobody is sickly sweet, and nice all the time.
If they present themselves that way, I’m just not buying it.
It shows they are hiding sides of themselves. We all have a shadow side after all.
All too often flattery is used by people trying to worm their way into your good books.
It’s a manipulation tactic that we have to be mindful of.
If someone comes on strong with the charm, there’s a name for it:
You have to ask yourself, what do they want?
Much like the next type of person on our list, they’re probably full of shit.
If you never see the real person, how can you create a real relationship with them?
I get it, we can all want to show our best side, especially when we’re just getting to know someone.
But when someone does this in a way that distorts who they truly are, it’s impossible to trust them.
No one is perfect, and we shouldn’t have to be. But we have to be vulnerable enough to let people see the good and the bad in us.
If somebody doesn’t, then they’re ultimately faking.
My friendships are a real mix of characters. That’s because the one thing I value above all else is simply someone who is genuine.
That can come in all sorts of packages.
I often joke that I don’t care if someone can be a bit of an asshole, as long as they are a sincere asshole.
It’s way easier to trust someone when what you see is what you get.
4) People who badmouth everyone behind their backs
Can we be honest?
Who amongst us has never said something unkind about someone else when they weren’t there?
I’m guessing not many.
Let’s face it, gossiping and so-called “bitching” happens.
Frustrations can mount and before you know it, you’re venting to someone else about it.
Whether it’s that “lazy” colleague at work who isn’t pulling their weight, your “nag of a mom” who won’t cut you some slack, or that “flaky” guy you’ve just started dating.
Most of us can be guilty of it from time to time. But deep down, we also know that it’s probably wrong.
If we have an issue with someone, we should be talking directly to them about it.
But there are some people who do this sort of thing on repeat.
They seem to have negative things to say about pretty much everyone in their life.
Sadly, it’s often a reflection of some deep insecurities within them.
But if someone says cruel and nasty things about their friends, family, and closest relationships — how can you ever trust them?!
They’ll obviously have no problem throwing us under the bus too.
It is our inner circle who should have our back the most, yet these types of people constantly betray them through the things they say.
5) “Yes” people who agree with everything you say
Who are these people underneath? What do they believe in? How do they feel? What do they really think?
The trouble is you’ll never know.
Maybe they don’t even know.
These types of people are often intense people-pleasers. At some stage, they’ve let seeking the validation and approval of others overtake them.
I understand that we all want to be liked. But that should never be at the expense of having your own personality.
Otherwise, it just becomes another form of faking.
You can’t trust someone who is incapable of telling you the truth, and only says what they think you want to hear.
6) People who stand for nothing
They don’t really have any particular beliefs, thoughts, ideas, opinions, or sadly, principles either.
As long as life is going hunky dory for them, that’s all they care about.
They won’t put themselves on the line for anything.
They don’t speak out against wrongdoing.
They aren’t prepared to inconvenience their own life to do the right thing. Yet they are prepared to step over other people if it benefits them.
These types of people are selfish and spineless.
Don’t expect them to ever have your back, because they prefer to “stay out of it”.
In life, we have to stand for something or we end up standing for nothing.
Without being melodramatic, as the famous quote goes:
“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”
7) Unkind people incapable of empathy
Altruism isn’t just something we learn, it could even be a hardwired instinct in us according to research.
Our very survival has rested upon our ability to co-operate with one another.
Taking care of each other relies on giving a damn about your fellow man.
I recently read a quote that rings so true for me:
“When I was young, I admired clever people. Now that I am old, I admire kind people.”
Genuine compassion and the ability to put yourself in someone else’s shoes are crucial elements that foster trust, understanding, and deeper connections between us.
Kindness is the best guarantee of decency in someone. But hearts without kindness have hardened.
Unfortunately, people who close themselves off in this way are far more likely to end up doing cruel and ugly things to others.
So you should tread very carefully around them.
8) The fair-weather friend
To have trust, we need depth in a relationship too.
Shallow connections simply don’t make the grade.
Fair-weather friends are only around when times are good but disappear when you need them the most.
Trusting these sorts of people can leave you feeling abandoned and unsupported.
You might not realize until it’s too late that you’ve got one of these types in your life.
But there are some red flags to heed along the way:
They usually have hundreds of acquaintances who they refer to as friends, and they flit around from one to another.
You’ll most likely find that they’re unreliable, flaky, and inconsistent in their actions.
They only come to you when they need something, and they have no problem asking favor after favor — even if it puts you out.
Eventually, they’ll do something (or not do something!) that highlights their lack of loyalty or genuine care for your well-being.
9) People who only eat one piece of chocolate and put the rest of the bar back to save for later
Seriously, what is that about?
It cannot be me who is just greedy.
No, it must be them that is clearly not human.
Most likely they are some sort of lizard person from another planet trying to infiltrate our species.
DO NOT TRUST THEM.
See the good in people, but don’t be blind to the bad
I think it’s important to give people the benefit of the doubt.
Otherwise, there’s a danger that we become pretty cynical and jaded in the process.
I don’t know about you, but I certainly don’t want to go around expecting the worst from everyone I meet. That sounds like a very lonely way to live.
But there’s a balance to strike.
When it comes to trusting others, we need healthy boundaries and a good pinch of realism too.
That way we can openly embrace one another, but still protect ourselves from the people who don’t have our best interest at heart.