BE CAREFUL THAT THIS IS NOT A SILLY THING.
Emotional vampires exist
10 January 2020
Although the title is somewhat dramatic, it is true that we have toxic people around us, we know and accept it, but what we should not consent to is to be dragged onto their land, which they enrich, feed and enjoy. We don't have to be Van Helsing and kill emotional vampires, but we do have to reject their influence and evil intent.
I am sure that each and every one of you will think of someone close once you read a few more lines.
The emotional vampire is a vampire that instead of sucking blood with fangs, “sucks” emotions with hits presence. I don’t know about you, but this idea was stupid and funny to me when I first heard it, but not so much when I started to notice the people around me at times, and encouraged by what I was observing, I began to pay attention to more or less close circles. I recommend that you do this exercise, although I already warn you that the result is somewhat heartbreaking and revealing at the same time.
I will dare to make a derivative of this concept, the emotional vampire 2.0. In this evolution we differentiate three types:
- Those people who always have an excuse to be an emotional drag. These vampires are mean, but not dangerous since you prepare yourself with garlic, and by keeping the safety distance, they rarely manage to sink their teeth and take you into their state of continuous unease or demotivation.
- Then there are the casual vampires, who are second in danger. They are the ones who struggle not to bite, but actually need blood to live. They are those who, without weighty reasons or under situations that can be perfectly avoided, from time to time, they let themselves fall and drag everyone around them. A recommendation to fight these is to do resilience exercises daily, you have to be prepared.
- And finally, and the ones to fear and run away from, because they can’t be beaten, are the spontaneous vampires. They are the ones that for no reason, need your good spirits to feel satisfied. They have no problems and only get satisfaction from your misery. These cannot be beaten, they appear without warning and when you see them arrive, it is too late, at that moment you are already caught.
In project management and in this specific case in team management the same thing happens, it is obvious, teams are made up of people, and I already tell you, that in all teams we have some emotional vampire. Our obligation as project managers is to provide a favorable work climate (in my opinion, I would even say pleasant, since it directly affects the productivity of the team) and for this it is essential to know how to manage these profiles. People whose tendency is a gloomy emotional state, whether we like it or not, we will have to maintain a more paternalistic treatment with them, they need it.
Let’s understand that behind a discouraged person there can be a brilliant professional. The emotionally variable people, require close but not continuous observation. Over time, dealing with them will allow us to anticipate their ‘relapses’ and dampen them considerably. But the spontaneous ones… I don’t know what to say there, I still haven’t managed to beat them, nor have I found an antidote against their bite.