I have an affinity towards anything Psychology related, which makes sense since I was a psychology minor. I firmly believe in mental health, and personal growth. When both go unchecked, a person's mental health declines and their personal growth becomes more than stagnant. Life happens and stress can get the best of us. When in a rut and on the decline, it is possible for people to exhibit toxic behaviors. Each and every toxic behavior has a broad range of what it can look like. These behaviors in theory don't start out toxic, in fact it is normal to exhibit them on occasion, but they can become toxic when met at extremes.
This series "Toxic Behaviors" features: Anger, Blinded Love, Closed Minded, Control & Manipulation, Deceit, Envy, Lack of Empathy, Lust, Narcissism, Pessimism, and Possession.
My art is inspired by my love for surrealism, and psychology. I wanted to bring my visual representation of these toxic traits to "life"
Enter if you dare
Tempering too fast can be a toxic behavior. They aren’t in control of their internal stability~ everything seems to illicit an emotional reaction and response from them. Their blood pressure is high. The world has them feeling out of control and resentful. They feel deeply~ but at what cost is your emotional health? Be selective with your battles, sometimes peace is better than being right. Anger doesn’t solve anything~ it builds nothing, yet it can destroy everything. Allow your self the peace you are craving.
Love is and can be another consuming emotion. It can cause many to disregard their brain completely. It is important to not only think with your heart, but also with your brain. Cupid's arrow struck them in the center of their heart. It is a blinded faith. It can become a toxic type of loyalty. Everyone wants to feel loved and appreciated, this is normal. What's not normal is being so blinded by love that one is no longer capable to be rational and see the truth for what it is. They no longer are able to hold friends or loved ones accountable. They idolize them and put them on a pedestal. Their loved one does not wrong; it isn't even possible. More often than not, the truth will eventually catch up.
People who are closed minded have full cups; you can’t teach someone with a cup that is already full. They have seen and learned it all. Nothing you can say or do will change their mind, perspective, or opinion on something. They are a prisoner to their own mind. Trapped. Unable to learn from others because they’re blinded by their own ego. In this lifetime~ do you truly believe you have seen it all? We are constantly being exposed to new experiences, cultures, ways of thinking. Things are being discovered daily. Don’t cage your mind simply because you can’t humble yourself to learn. Be a student of life, learn every day.
Control and Manipulation
Controlling people will do things to try and keep others under them. They tend to want to control others due to a lack of control in themselves and their own life. They’re a master of puppets, constantly pulling at strings, to keep you firm within their grip. A true master of manipulation, they’ll lead you to believe that their request of actions are of your own free will. However they are insufferable, they'll hold you to higher standards than themselves. They'll be overly critical, yet hypocritical. Don’t be controlled to someone else’s desires, live to create your own life.
Deception comes in many forms~ but one that hits close to home for many is backstabbing. People pretending to be your friend~ but when given the chance to rise up, they stab you in the back. They hide behind a mask of lies, constantly misrepresenting the truth. They’re nice to you in person to save face, but then when you’re not around they’ll share what you had once confided in them. Forgive yourself for the blindness that put you in the path of those who betrayed you. People of integrity do not hide their reactions or opinions, they do not manipulate others through deception. They do not pretend. Those who deceive are the pretenders. Fakes. Inauthentic. They have no true allies, or identities~ drama is their one and only muse. They love to stir the pot and watch it fuse. Careful what secrets you share, you never know who’s truly got your back
Envy is to want what someone else has; have that be talents, skills, experiences, materials, and appearances. People who are envious, feel that they are consistently lacking something. Envy is a deep rooted insecurity linked to self worth. Toxic envy is found in those who feel inadequate, tainted, and unworthy... They lack self-love and confidence. There is no real form of self worth. They’re never happy with themselves. It’s never good enough. They rob themselves of happiness through constant comparison. We are all different flowers and plants growing at different rates... One cannot compare the beauty of a rose bush to that of a sunflower field. They are both beautiful and magnificent in their differences. Envy eats nothing but its own heart. So do not pluck or wish for another person’s flowers. Prune, water and grow your own. They are waiting for you to thrive.
Lack of Empathy
True Empathy requires that you step outside your own emotions to view things entirely from another person’s perspective. People who lack empathy are unable to place themselves in another person’s shoes. These people tend to circle everything back to themselves and their needs, and how they feel. Which in turn totally disregards the other person and their needs. They don’t care what type of pain they inflict on others, because they are fundamentally unsupportive. They can fake empathy only when it helps them look better. However they lack the desire to put anyone else’s needs above their own.
Lust is a very strong and intense desire for something or someone. It is an intense emotion and can consume the person when it's at an extreme. Lust would take the body and discard the soul. It is rabid, it has no boundaries. It gets what it wants when it wants it and doesn't care of the cost. It is that instant satisfaction, and gratification that causes Lust to rush. It has no concept of patience. It has no appreciation for order or rules.
Narcissism is and can be a very toxic behavior. Narcissism means to have excessive interest in or admiration of oneself and one's physical appearance. It can be seen as extreme forms of selfishness, involving a sense of entitlement, a lack of empathy, and a constant need for admiration. Their self esteem is at the bottom of a bottomless well. They need constant validation outside themselves. Because of this fixation on self, they get in the mindset of believing that the world revolves around them. They have troubles connecting and having conversations with others. In conversation they'll do anything for the lime-light, including one upping others on positive and negative topics.
A bad behavior is when someone never has anything positive to say, it comes off as they have nothing to appreciate. Nothing is good enough. Every second they have something to complain about and put down. The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity, constantly glorifying every problem that lies ahead, or for most behind. Never seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, only living in pure chaos and darkness. This behavior can really rain on everyone’s parade. Being negative can become an addiction, and a habit for most. It is okay to have and at its worst a toxic behavior.
Possessiveness can be found in relationships with humans, and with ownership of objects. Another word for this toxic behavior is Greed. It stems from an internal fear that causes us to be greedy. We are never satisfied. We hunger for more~ They don’t want people to leave them, so they try to be possessive of them and strip them of their free will. They want to keep them close. It is comforting. But yet it’s the very thing that is drowning them. They don’t care as long as their internal equilibrium feels “stable.” But the irony is that the more things they have, the less free they actually are, and then in turn are less stable. They are truly drowning in gluttony. It’s a never ending void that they feel they must fill~ However they can’t swim out if the path is filled with shit.