7 traits you should beware of in People around you

We sometimes think that the people we need to be most cautious of are people with different beliefs, racial backgrounds, those who look, act or behave differently, and perhaps those from a different social or economic status. Whereas I have come to discover that the types of people we should all beware of may well be people with whom we are familiar. The reason we should be careful is not because of their imperfections, after all, no one is perfect, but due to some of the traits that I’m going to mention below.

While we all exhibit one or more of these characteristics now and again and that doesn’t make us bad, however displaying these types of behaviour on a regular basis means that you and I ought to pay attention. The reason is that it’s very hard to please people who fit this description and our relationship with them may become distressed if care is not taken to manage the relationship appropriately. Recognising and replacing some of these behaviours in your own life too can help you become a better person.

1. Unhappy – No matter what you do or how bright things seem, some people just can’t be happy and if they are at all, it’s always short-lived. They’d rather see their cup half empty than half full. It’s hard for them to be grateful. Something is always never right. Unhappy people find it hard to be grateful and the converse is true that grateful people are happy people.

2. Selfishness – selfish people are most times concerned chiefly with their own personal gain or pleasure. There may be few occasions when they may display some consideration towards others. But 8 out of 10 times, the kindness or selfishness they display will be about them and what they stand to gain. People who have been raised by a selfish parent or parents often end up being selfish themselves especially if they are not in tune with their motives or in denial. They have been brought up to believe that their survival is paramount and anything or anyone that is perceived as a threat to that is seen as an enemy. For them, everything is about fighting for their corner. They operate from a vantage point of everyone owes them and should kowtow to their needs. Sacrifice is not a word they are acquainted with and any attempt to live sacrificially soon gets sabotaged by their selfish impulses.

3. Inability to fight fair – Have you ever seen two toddlers or kids fighting only to notice that the one who dealt the heavier blow is the one crying hysterically? This doesn’t just happen in children’s world but also in the world of adults. Adults with this type of characteristic have been conditioned to see everything first as a battle and secondly as one they must win. They’ve not learnt that you lose some and win some. Things have to happen their way otherwise it’s no way. They therefore go through life with an imaginary sword in their hands, not knowing when it’s okay to play fight or agree to disagree. They assume all fights are for survival.

4. Hypocrisy or the ability to hold others to a standard not upheld by oneself – There are people who vehemently judge in others what they tolerate in their own lives. In fact, they are the first ones to spot someone behaving in a certain way even when the person really isn’t. They may make ascriptions about people out of their own low moral standards or weaknesses. These types of people may attribute selfishness or control to their spouses, friends and colleagues when in fact that’s what they are doing. Because of their proclivity to do those things, they are very suspicious of people doing it to them and may make assumptions about other people’s intentions.

5. Insecurity – Other than lacking inner and quiet confidence, those with this trait feel as though they are perpetually in the state of being open to danger or threat and that they lack protection. This probably explains their need to snuff out other people’s light in order to perceive the brightness of theirs. They may not mean any harm initially but their insecurities would often lead them to constantly have a need to self-promote themselves and demean anyone they might perceive as competition. Even at a very subconscious level, an insecure person always sees their weaknesses intensified under the light of someone else’s strengths. Instead of realising that they also have strengths and may need to work on some of their weaknesses, they blame their weaknesses on somebody else, be it a spouse, parent, children or circumstances even.

6. Uncomplimentary or critical – In my lifetime, I have met a few people, who, no matter what you wear, do or how you perform, they just can’t compliment you even if everyone is saying something nice about you. For them to give a compliment when one is due is to make them feel robbed and small. They are competitive to the core. They’d rather find something that isn’t quite right to make them look better or to make you look less adequate instead of celebrating you. These are the same people who don’t understand the difference between a harsh criticism and a positive one. To them, every form of judgment is the same. Don’t be surprised if they accuse you of being critical when you are only trying to evaluate or analyse a situation or action.

7. Lack of accountability/responsibility – People with these types of trait tend to blame or shift blame onto others. Instead of focusing on their area of responsibility and holding themselves up to the standard expected, they will find pleasure in pointing out what others are not doing right. They may blame their failures on others rather than take responsibility. In their own eyes, they are always right while others are wrong. In the world of anyone with this type of trait, nothing can be wrong from their side and therefore it’s always hard for them to be objective. They have a false sense of their real worth or behaviour. And because they see almost everything that happens to them or generally as someone else’s fault, they are hardly seen to take responsibility or become accountable.