ToXiC Wetware Part 2 of 3
If you’re astute, you notice that certain people around you prefer you to remain the same and feel uncomfortable with any changes that you make. They say and do things that makes it obvious that they’re trying to reinforce who they think or what they want you to be, not what you wish to change into.
However, you decide to persist, perhaps even spurred on by their recalcitrance. So, that starts to take care of the physical side of things, though you also want to give your brain a further workout and notice how repetitive some of your thinking has become over the years. This starts to annoy you – you don’t like the idea of being predictable, as you’ve bought into the idea of free will – so you begin to question why you revert back to consistently monotonous modes of thinking. You might start to hunt those thoughts down to their origins far back in the past and examine if they’re relevant anymore.
If they’re not, why entertain them? It’s easy to get rid of old, redundant thoughts and the neural patterns associated with them – your brain will kill them off by synaptic pruning if you do and think different things, thus you have the ability to reprogram it at both a physical and logical level. The physical structure of the brain is altered by sustained compassion meditation, for example, amongst many other techniques.
You can shake it all about by doing different things, challenging yourself and so on. Meditation and mindfulness will enable you to observe and categorise your thoughts in a non-judgmental way.
If you do this, you’ll soon notice how repetitive thoughts and behaviour can be, and how, you could see your brain as a computer, being run by a series of programs (thoughts) roughly controlled by the operating system of your mind. Fuzzy logic is your friend here. If you like the analogy, you might consider debugging your source code, refreshing or updating the operating system and recalibrating the way your brain works by practicing DIY neuroplasticity, also covered on this site.
If you suffer the misfortune to have a number of toxic people (Toxics) in your life, you’ll notice how certain subroutines are endemic traits and are easily triggered in them. Toxic people are also a form of malware – they try to embed themselves into the fabric of your life and that of other people you hang out with, and are consistently bad for all parties.
No matter how paltry their achievements, a Necrotic Narcissist will brag on about the most trivial thing they’ve done, hyping it into something extraordinary. Your eyes glaze over when they hatch their vain empires, awaiting validation and endorsement for things that most people wouldn’t give a second thought to. ‘Look at me, me, me, you must listen to what I have to say, aren’t I awesome for doing this,’ seems to be the instruction manual they’ve downloaded into their minds.
Garbage in, garbage out, you think wryly.
Should you know a Professional Victim, you’ll realise that anything will provoke the ‘how unfair the world has been to me’ trope, wherein the Toxic relates the sorry saga of their tragic life and how everything and everyone is against them. This thought runs around their mind like a retarded gerbil on a treadmill. The ballad of perpetual rejection permeates their psyche and will be articulated at the least provocation.
Buy them a drink and watch them recall significant events in their life that shaped not only their victimhood, but also their sense of entitlement, in that they must be listened to and validated. After all, nobody has suffered as much, or had it as hard as they have. Therefore you are expected to listen to them intently, be supportive at the appropriate juncture, and express deep sympathy and empathy as the weary narrative unfurls.
Whereas you might initially have felt a degree of compassion, this eventually mutates into indifference or even contempt, as you cannot understand why this person is incapable of even beginning to try to resolve their frequently articulated issues. They understand all this stuff, right, and where there’s a problem, there’s usually a solution, which is why we have Google. This is assuming, of course, that they haven’t made their entire backstory up in order to get sympathy, attention and validation, therefore giving them some spotlight and a feeling of importance and entitlement.
Aggression prone Volatile Volcanoes need little encouragement to unleash their inherent anger and to potential flare up. They’re always looking out for being dissed and actively seek opportunities to turn into Toxzilla and run amock. If they have a partner, this person’s job will be to spot when things are likely to turn frenetic and try to exercise a civilizing influence. Sometimes this works, more often not, as the Toxic’s louring presence and body language will amply demonstrate. Don’t spill their pint – things will escalate.
All these Toxics (and the other variants of the Noxious Nine Toxic Types) will habitually run and act upon a series of programs that define them as individuals. They’re so used to being controlled by their aberrant, buggy software, that they do this instinctively and automatically. They can’t countenance any alternative to the way they think and behave as it seems to pay off for them, and has done so for many years – it’s embedded into their psyche and neurons. Even if they had any real degree of self-awareness, it’s unlikely that they would perceive any need to change, unless a significant life-changing event stimulates a need for personal transformation.