Before entering adulthood, you probably thought that your days of dealing with unnecessary drama and ruthless haters would magically end once you said goodbye to your teenage self. Oh boy, were you wrong. Quite frankly (unless you somehow manage to avoid human interaction for the rest of your life), you are bound to encounter adults with “hater” behaviors whether they are your friends, family members, co-workers, acquaintances, or even spouses. Thankfully, we’ve distinguished the four types of “haters in disguise” and will teach you how to handle them like a pro.
1. The Jealous Friend
I think we have all had at least one of these so far in life (if not, consider yourself lucky). This is the friend who says that they want what is best for you, but will low-key criticize you or feed you backhanded compliments every step of the way. You will also notice that this friend will begin distancing themselves from you once your life seems to be headed on a great path, unlike theirs. I can usually discover if my friend is this type of hater by testing them. I would first ask my friend for their opinion on what I should do in a situation, and if their response does not seem to align with what is truly in my best interest, then I have myself a culprit.
How to Handle Them: Communication is key, and this is a prime example of that. Confront them and find out why they are acting that way. Although they may deny it at first, talk through it and try to find out a way in which you can both be happy in the relationship. If the problem continues, however, don’t feel forced to remain in this draining, unhealthy friendship and let go.
2. The Passive Aggressive Colleague
Unfortunately, unlike with friends, you can’t decide who your colleagues are. This not only leads to a pretty big mixture of personalities, but it also leads to a whole lot of passive aggressiveness in the work place. Since everyone must work together and be professional, being completely direct with one another regarding one’s thoughts and feelings is less likely. Signs of a passive-aggressive colleague are erratic moods, a lack of effort, procrastination, and possibly sabotage.
How to Handle Them: Talk to them outside of the office in neutral territory; I suggest grabbing coffee, but if you think you can handle an entire lunch, go right ahead. Whatever the setting may be, the main point is to discuss how to create a harmonious work environment based on respect and communication.
3. The Overbearing Family Member
You know that family member that still treats you like you’re five years old? This is the one. They speak to you as if you are incompetent, incapable and unintelligent. They claim that they want you to live the best life possible and to succeed, yet they always point out your mistakes and failures. The truth is, they try to control your life because they are trying to live through you, but unfortunately they are going about it the completely wrong way.
How to Handle Them: Since you may feel compelled to keep this person in your life (because after all, they are family), it is important to set boundaries with them. Constantly surrounding yourself with their opinionated and judgmental ways will only hinder your growth and discourage you. Be careful with what you share with them, and how much time you share with them.
4. The Stifling Spouse
Do you find that your partner is controlling you? Do they constantly criticize you when you do not do what they want? Do you feel like your losing sight of yourself while in the relationship? This means that you have some negative energy in your life, and unfortunately it is coming from the person who claims to love you.
How to Handle Them: Letting go is easier said than done. If you just can’t bear to do that, it is vital for your relationship and your own self-esteem to communicate with them about the problem. Beyond that, it is important to have your own personal hobbies, friends, and interests. Remember to never let your happiness rely solely on someone else.
So there you have it. These are the four kinds of people in your life who are giving off bad energy and need to change. If you continue surrounding yourself with these haters and don’t bother handling the situation, you might go down the path of anxiety and depression. So, if you want to keep these people in your life, make sure that they are in it with good intentions.