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How to deal with toxic co-workers

This article is more than 12 months old

Have you ever shown up at work in one of your better moods, only to have it shattered in an instant by the negativity of one of your co-workers?

You are not alone.

Throughout your career, there will be times when you have to deal with toxic people.

In order to stay unaffected by their negative impact, you need to prepare an effective strategy to deal with emotionally difficult people.

Given the fact that human beings are social creatures, we are required to constantly cross paths with people of different characters and backgrounds, including at the workplace.

Here are some ways to deal with emotionally difficult people at work:


Sometimes, interacting with toxic people will drain you emotionally.

Hence, even during the most heated moments at work, it is important to always stay in control of your emotions and not get carried away.

When they start acting up, give them a reasonable response and do not let yourself get sucked into the chaos.

If you get a negative remark or discouraging comments from difficult people, do not take it personally.


Difficult people usually display a certain pattern in behaviour during certain times.

For example, when they are not appointed the team leader for a project, they tend to blame others and play the victim so that they gain sympathy.

Do not be deceived by such behaviours. You must observe how difficult people respond to a particular situation at work.

This will help you plan an appropriate response to stop the attitude.


Toxic people often exaggerate trivial issues.

Rather than pay close attention to the problems posed by them and stressing yourself, it would be better if you could focus on a solution to improve the whole situation.


Difficult people have a tendency to always look at everything, even the most favourable terms, through darker lenses.

If you do not want to be like them, start choosing to be positive in everything you do.

When you have done your best and others still complain, close your eyes to their words and focus on yourself.


If you feel you are no longer able to handle emotionally difficult people, then you should close this cycle of negativity by cutting off contact with them.

Constantly exposing yourself to their pessimism will make you easily dragged into the field of negativity.

If you are no longer able to be objective about certain issues, it is time to distance yourself from toxic people at work.

The main problem with emotionally difficult people is that sometimes, they are unaware of their bad behaviour and how they affect the team.

Therefore, if you want to succeed at work, you have to master the art of handling toxic people.

Keep yourself surrounded with inspiring people who make you happy at work and improve yourself.

Article contributed by TBC HR Consulting (