Toxic Personality Traits

Toxic Personality Traits

Toxic Personality Traits

Each item that we consume helps to either heal us or poison us. It is not just food that nourishes our bodies but also everything that we see, hear, taste, smell, and feel. From the books you read to the air you breathe, all that you consume is a source of nourishment. Every single conversation that you have will positively or negatively impact you. Review your relationships. Do these connections nourish love and support, or do they feed self-doubt and anxiety?

Often we encounter people who fuel our insecurities and drain our emotional well-being. If you notice this to be a trend for a certain person, they may be toxic. It is important to take a step back, assess the relationship, and care for yourself.

Below is a guide to help you starve the negative aspects of your life so that the positives may be nourished. You will learn to identify toxic personality traits and how to protect yourself from them as well as how to heal any toxic behaviors that you may have.

Toxic Personality Traits to Look for and Avoid

Selfishness: Can you think of anyone that asks for your support through all of their problems, yet when you need help, they are never available? This is a key trait of a toxic person. Unless it is about them, these people don’t care. They do not support you, and they definitely do not go out of their way for you. Conversations are almost always about them, and you will frequently find yourself cut off the moment you can finally get a word in.

  • Negativity – For a toxic person, something is always wrong, and nothing is ever right. They often display their negativity through sarcastic comments and complaints. They focus on problems rather than solutions and may frequently suck all the positivity out of you.
  • Manipulation – To get what they want, toxic people often try to control you. These people are experts at playing with your emotions and using them against you if needed. They may be very subtle with this, leaving people unaware that they are even being manipulated until it is too late.
  • Triggering Other’s Guilt – Toxic people tend to “guilt” others into getting what they want. If they are being accused of something, they may shift the conversation by bringing up irrelevant details about something they did years ago. If they are looking for attention, they may persuade you to drop what you are doing and spend time with them. A common example would be, “If you really loved me, you would come to see me tonight instead of going to that exercise class.”
  • Lacking Empathy – Unable to empathize, toxic people cannot comprehend the feelings that another person is experiencing. They don’t take the time to understand another person’s situation because they are too wrapped up in their own world.
  • Jealous and Judgmental – A toxic person feels a need to believe that they are the “best”. If something positive happens to another person, they become upset that this event did not happen to them as well. These feelings are often released through judgmental gossip or criticism. This is their attempt to lower your self-esteem and, in turn, increase theirs. They try to build themselves up by tearing others down.
  • Telling Lies – Whether it is to get themselves out of a situation or to make themselves the hero of the story, toxic people may frequently lie. They might create an entirely new scenario, twist an existing story around, or just remove essential facts. Either way, this action leaves it difficult to trust what they are saying.
  • Victim Mentality – A toxic person will never admit they are wrong. Rather than taking responsibility for their feelings or actions, toxic people often blame anything or anyone but themselves. They are always the victims, and they thrive off of others’ attention and compassion when they play this role.
  • Disrespectful – Needing always to be put first. Toxic people will hurt anyone that they feel threatened by. They will not stop to respect you or your feelings. Often they may say very painful things and later play them off as a joke.
  • Center of Attention – Toxic people will do anything for attention. They love being the star of the show. Attention is their main source of validation; it makes them feel important. If there is ever a dull moment, they will create a crisis just to enjoy watching people try to help them.

Protect Yourself from Toxic People

Spending time with a toxic person can leave you feeling emotionally drained and unfulfilled. They subtly attack your self-esteem and may leave you with a negative attitude. Although you may feel bad for them, your well-being must be a priority. Here are some steps to protect yourself from toxic people:

  1. Identify: Review the above list of toxic personality traits. A person does not have to possess each of the traits to be toxic. Just a few obvious signs may be enough. Knowing and understanding these traits is the first step to recognizing if there is anyone currently in your life that fits the description as well as identifying people that you will meet in the future. It is important to spot a toxic person before they get too close.
  1. Assess: Review your relationship with each person that you identified. How do they make you feel? Are you sad after your interactions? Drained? Do you feel pressured by them or the need to impress them? Be honest with yourself and take some time to weigh out the pros and cons.
  1. Set boundaries: You may not be able to change what another person does, but you can change what you do. Although you may feel guilty, setting boundaries is the most important thing you can do for your health. If you noted many negatives when you were assessing, it might be best to bring those relationships to an end. If this is not possible, you should set strict internal and external boundaries to follow. If this person is a close family member, counseling may be a step in the right direction.
  2. Follow your instincts: If you are unsure of whether someone is toxic or not, listen to your gut! Whenever you get a feeling that something or someone is not quite right, trust that feeling and take action to care for yourself.

Reviewing and Redirecting Your Behavior

Now, you may be great at noticing these traits externally ­– but have you searched within? WHAT IF YOU’RE THE CAUSE OF TOXICITY IN YOUR LIFE? Unfortunately, we all have unhealthy personalities deep within us that negatively impact our lives. We may consider them “issues”, but haven’t fully wrapped our minds around these traits and haven’t made an effort to change them. Take a minute to review the list again. Are there any toxic personality traits that you can see in yourself?

Tips for healing your identified trait:

  • Admit it. Look inward to identify all your toxic behaviors and start to eliminate them. Take 100% responsibility. Practice self-discipline.
  • Be the hero, not the victim. When we play the victim, we choose to blame others instead of choosing responsibility. This only leads to feelings of powerlessness. No, the universe is not against you. Stop giving opportunities to people who make you feel inferior and let you down. Learn the power of saying “no” and “yes” to the right opportunities.
  • Look on the bright side. You can never fail in life; your actions merely produce results. It’s up to you how to interpret those results. Positive thinking is an understanding of how to feel negative emotions and still maintain enough hope to keep going. Sometimes we can’t shape our life situation, but we can shape our attitude toward those situations. Be vigilant over your thoughts, and stop the toxic negativity.
  • Take a break from social media. Don’t allow yourself to waste time scrolling through posts that you are judging or comparing yourself to. Worrying about what other people are doing consumes a lot of energy that could be spent on improving your own life. Constantly comparing what others have is completely toxic and a waste of time. Your life is your journey, not a competition with others. Measure your progress by comparing yourself to who you were yesterday.
  • Accept that “perfect” is a myth. Perfectionism grows when you feel imperfect and deeply flawed. You have to constantly re-earn or re-prove your worth to others or yourself. The problem is that you’re constantly seeking external validation. It’s like being on a treadmill, always chasing the feeling that everything in your life is “right”. But absolute perfection doesn’t exist. Life is a continual journey, constantly changing and evolving. You need to realize that true internal acceptance and peace come from understanding what’s inside of you. You’ll never hustle your way into self-love.
  • Say, thank you. Be grateful for what you have instead of complaining about what you don’t have. Writing down three things each day that you are grateful for can open your eyes to all that you have and allow you to reach a greater appreciation for them. Slow down and enjoy each experience. Sometimes, the best things in life are easily overlooked.

Ask yourself: would you want to hang around with me? Be someone you want to be around. Your mission isn’t to please everyone, but are you bringing negativity to your environment? Today, you have the power to make incremental changes to evolve into a greater version of yourself.

Truths of Life

Truths of Life

Truths of Life

In the game of life, we often find ourselves with more downs than ups. More sad moments than happy moments. The truth is we usually wait with hope for something to just happen, things to just change direction and only get better. Sometimes we need some tough love to open our eyes to the harsh truths that make us stronger. 

“In any given moment we have two options: to step forward into growth or to step back into safety.” -Abraham Maslow

Truths That Will Make You Stronger

Life Isn’t Fair

We spend the majority of our lives waiting; waiting for something to happen, waiting for something to begin, waiting for something to end.  Nothing comes simple. Luck isn’t what brings success, but rather hard work is what turns dreams into a plan and that plan a reality. Wake up every morning with the mindset of going further than you did yesterday.

Only Person That Can Make You Stronger is You

External influences can boost your mood, but for how long can others sustain your happiness? The origin of happiness comes from your relationship with yourself. Have a date for yourself and discover things that you have not before. The bottom line is; in the long run, nothing matters more than the way you feel about who you are on the inside.

The World Owes You Nothing

You can be the most intelligent person in the world, the funniest, and be the most attractive, but if no one is aware of these traits, you’ll get nothing out of them. We all feel entitled as if the universe owes us something? Listen. You are left with two options; either you continuously feel sorry for yourself because you deserve more or you step into the world, and you take what is attributed to you. Take a hint, which choice do successful people take? Be grateful. Be humble. Conquer your day. Being alive and healthy is a privilege.

There May be no Tomorrow

Death is a part of life. Nothing can prepare us for the earth-shattering feeling of losing a loved one. The truth is, at this very moment, you have someone planning something for tomorrow without actualizing the possibility of not having a tomorrow. Spend your time intelligently and appreciate the present moment. Don’t put off making that phone call or visiting your family members that you haven’t seen in a while.

Not Everyone Will Support You

You can’t pose meaning to everyone and everything. Unfortunately, in life, there isn’t a shortage of haters, doubters, and Debbie Downers. You know that lasting happiness comes from you. Therefore, trust your instincts and forget about the people that doubt you. In this society, we are always worried about gratification from others. Forget them. Concentrate on doing what you know in your heart is just.

You Can’t Control Everything

We all know those people that have a tight grip and micro-manage each situation. Letting go sometimes is the best option, as it’ll give an opportunity to grow and allow for things to unfold as they are meant to be. I’ve sometimes learned that the events that are least planned turn out better than the events that are planned to the T. This doesn’t mean that you should have the mentality for everything of “wait and hope.” Still put in 100% dedication, but relinquish your grip and trust the universe, which will make things right.

Failure is Inevitable

We may fail a few times, and it devastates us. We quickly judge, seeing ourselves as failures. The truth is, you are too hard on yourself. Whatever your aim is in life, you’ll never be 100% sure it will work, but you can 100% guarantee nothing will work if you don’t put in an effort. Look at the positive note of failure. It makes you learn a lesson, build strength, gain experience, and increase your chances of achieving the goal you set out to complete.

Information is Not Knowledge

The information does not equal true knowledge. Knowledge can only be achieved through direct experience. The first-hand experience that you expose yourself to will genuinely help you understand what is meant by the information. An example was learning how to start IVs on patients. I can read a manual 100 times on the technique, even descriptions of the feeling when you’ve hit the vein. The information only gave me an understanding. Until I do the task hands-on, I will achieve knowledge, reasoning, and intuition.

Nobody is Too Busy

Guy or a girl never responded to you? How many times were you going to do something and told yourself “I will just do it later”? It is just a matter of priority. If you haven’t got a text/call from someone, it’s because they deliberately chose not to answer. People that tell you I don’t have time are simply telling you “You are not important.” Harsh truth but the sooner you learn this, the sooner you’ll make time for the people that share equal importance. Everyone has time; it’s just a matter of priority.

You Will Never be 100% Ready

We have always been told to make a decision when 100% ready. “Be ready before making the big decision.” Our parents protected us from ideas and truths we were not prepared to learn about. We have been conditioned to be thoroughly committed and ready before making the right decision. The fact is, nobody feels 100% when an opportunity arises. Waiting for the perfect moment will never happen because only experiences and lessons will prepare you for what is next in life. The most significant moments in life force us to grow beyond our comfort zone.

Closing Thoughts

When an opportunity arises will you be the person that accepts the challenge of growth, or step back into safety?

Travel Nursing: Housing, Travel, and Transportation

Travel Nursing: Housing, Travel, and Transportation

Travel Nursing: Housing, Travel, and Transportation

When you accept your travel nursing contract, you are going to need to establish travel nursing housing, transportation, and travel. If you decide to go with the option of finding your own housing, you are in for a project, but it will increase your income in the long run.

You’re going to need to devote some time to figuring out where you want to live, how you’ll get there, and what you will be doing there. 


When looking to find a home for your travel nursing assignment, there are many things to consider. 

a. Proximity to the job

 You are going to run into a lot of homes and condos that are available to rent or lease. The first question that arises is how long and far you are willing to drive.

If you wish to stay closer to the facility, you are going to limit yourself on what you can do for fun but that’s completely fine. Sacrifices have to be made.

b. Proximity to activities

If you accepted a travel nursing contract in a location you want to explore, this might be your deciding factor. If you are ok to drive to work for 30min+ this will expand your housing options. Did you accept the contract because you also wanted to have a mini-vacation?

Then you should be ok with driving to work for a greater period of time so that you can take full advantage of your time off, plus living further from your assignment expands your housing search.

Live by the beach if you want to try water activities or stay near a major city to enjoy its museums and nightlife. 

c. The cost

This will be the major factor in your decision on where to house. You need to do a cost-save analysis to make sure that the place you want to stay in also fits your budget.

Your goal as a travel nurse is to not only enjoy it but also make some money. Make sure you are still able to save and enjoy your hobbies. Remember to see if utilities are also covered by tinder the rent or lease agreement. 


You also have to think about what are your necessities. What are the things you must have? For example when we took on a travel nursing contract we needed either a pool or a hot tub.

Maybe you want to be near a specific park, stadium,  pier, or beach. 



It’s fairly accurate to say that since you are taking on a travel nursing contract, you are either into traveling or want to make more money. For your travel nursing assignment, getting an idea of what you want to do or visit is always beneficial.

You may only be in that area for the length of the contract, and you may never return. You want to make the best of your travels.

The quickest way to learn about a city is to look it up and find out its most popular places. From there you can meet locals and learn what they enjoy doing in that city. A great resource on what to do during your travels is to talk to your coworkers.

They are going to know where everything is, the best places to get brunch, the trails with the highest points, where to see a waterfall, or even which parks are the best.

What we find helpful is devoting one day a week to an activity. You should also make a schedule for when to do activities as well as a list of activities you want to do.



Now you need to consider how you’re going to get to the place you will be living at. There are a few options for you. 

a. You can drive your car

This is going to be the least costly method. You need to consider how long your drive will be and the amount of gas. You also need to consider if you want to add all the miles you will be putting in your car if you decide to travel far away.

The other key point is that you will not be able to pack as many things because you won’t have the option of extra luggage during a flight. This is a great choice for someone that packs light and enjoys road trips.

b. Ship your car and fly

This is a good idea when you don’t like being in a car for long periods. This is also going to cost a significant amount more than just driving. Shipping a car can cost over a thousand dollars, depending on the season.

We recommend looking at different transportation companies and comparing their rate. The plane ticket can also be expensive, and we recommend shopping around for a good price.

This is also the more comfortable route. When flying, you’re also going to be able to bring luggage with you but remember that costs too, plus you can pack up your car before it gets shipped. 

c. Fly and get a rental car

This is also a great method if you are traveling with a friend and can last in one car. You can fly to your destination and pick up a rental car which can cost about the same as shipping your car.

You are a little limited on the things you can bring because you won’t be able to stuff your car before it gets shipped. This is the most convenient method, but be sure to shop around for the best rental prices,


In Closing

As a traveling nurse, there are a lot of things to consider when it comes to travel nursing housing, travel, and transportation. Travel nursing takes a lot of preparation and planning.

Make sure to devote a lot of time to research and communication so you are satisfied with your decisions.   


Looking for more nursing and travel nursing information? Check out these helpful links!

Travel Nursing Contract Negotiation

Travel Nursing Contract Negotiation

Travel Nursing Contract Negotiation

In travel nursing, contract negotiation is important, as it will determine the amount you get paid. Fight for yourself in these contract negotiations. You know your self-worth.

The goal you should have in mind is a win-win situation for both the recruiter and you. 

The Most Important Part of Travel Nursing

Nursing recruiters want to make a good commission, as the travel company has metrics in place to help them maintain their profit margins. But you’ll have some wiggle room.

It depends on the situation. For example, see if they can provide higher compensation for a crisis assignment. 


How is your money made in travel nursing? 

So business is transacted between the hospital and the travel agency. All your compensation, benefits, and reimbursements will come from the Bill Rate.

The bill rate is the amount the hospital pays the travel agency based on the hours worked by each contracted nurse.

Pay example

Bill Rate: $100/hr

Nurse pay rate: $50/hr (company profit 50%)

This is generally corporately mandated and covers such things as the company executives, employee salary/benefits, and a defined profit margin that the company specifies.

Let’s break down the components of the travel nursing contract negotiation:  


6 Components of Travel Nurse Contract Negotiations

We are rating these from the highest in importance to the lowest. Each plays a role in creating the best contract for you: 

  • Salary
  • Stipends
  • Housing 
  • Overtime
  • Travel Reimbursement
  • Licensing Reimbursement


Everyone should have a number in mind for this when negotiating, even in sales. This will also affect how much you’ll be taxed. We know Uncle Sam loves our money.

You should care less about reimbursements for travel and a higher hourly rate. You can generally cover extra costs from your weekly net pay and year-end tax benefits.

Ask your recruiter for the lowest base pay possible, as this will be the taxed portion of your pay. 


Stipends (Tax-free)

This is the untaxed part of your pay, and it is where the money is made. Stipends are broken down into money for housing and food, known as a “per diem”.

Since you are an employee working for a short time in another location for the company, tax-free benefits are given to you as compensation. 

The IRS has developed an allowable per diem amount for each area of the country. This is the maximum allowable for meals, lodging, and expenses. For more information, visit the GSA



Most of your stipends will be spent on housing. There are two ways to figure out the housing situation regarding travel nursing. The company can provide housing for you, they might take your stipend, or you can receive your stipend and arrange housing on your own.

We prefer to find housing ourselves. If you can manage the extra responsibility, you may be able to make more money at the end of your contract by pocketing that extra housing money. 

Sometimes, this is a huge deciding factor. If you want to be close to the ocean or a particular neighborhood, you might want to consider whether good housing is available in the contract location. 



How important this is will depend on the lifestyle you choose as a travel nurse. If you just want to work your 36 hours and enjoy exploring your world, overtime won’t matter much.

If you want to return to school and need some extra cash, this is an important negotiating point. From a business standpoint, any hours worked over and above the signed contract are simply a benefit (revenue) for the travel nurse agency.

The standard overtime offered by some companies is time and half of your hourly rate. Try to negotiate a higher overtime rate. If they don’t give in, remind them that working overtime benefits you and the travel company. 


Travel Reimbursement

The entire trip to your travel nursing contract will not be covered. If you do receive travel reimbursement, it will be a non-taxable income.

I prefer not to have a travel reimbursement and just negotiate higher pay/stipends, as that will generate more money over the course of 13 weeks(+).

The most common form is typically a flat-rate reimbursement involving travel to and from your contract. This can range anywhere from $250-500. 


Licensing Reimbursement

If you applied for a multi-license to travel to multiple locations, your agency would offer to pay those costs. Depending on the state, some costs can be costly. Ask your agency to reimburse you for all costs regarding licensing. 


The Decision-Making Process

You must understand your travel nursing contract. Remember, this is only a temporary job, so if you don’t think like things mid-contract, in 13 weeks, you can renegotiate.

Is this contract everything you wanted? Write down a list of pros and cons and make your decision. You might feel immense pressure – but with any big life event, change feels uncomfortable at first. 

Review the written contract carefully, and ask your recruiter for any contracts they might have. If you voiced concerns verbally and agreed to them, ensure they’re outlined in the contract.

Once you sign the contract, there’s no going back. You will be held accountable to the terms of the contract. No matter how small the issue, if it’s something important to you, ensure it’s written into the contract. 


A checklist of items to review before signing your travel nursing contract:

  • Contract start and end dates
  • Shift/unit
  • An hourly base rate, holiday pay, overtime rates
  • Guaranteed hours (36,48)
  • Stipends (per diem)
  • Cancellation allowed by the hospital 
  • Penalties for call-offs (sickness)
  • On-call requirements
  • Travel reimbursement
  • Floating policy
  • Requested days off

Once the contract is negotiated and everything looks good, you can sign and begin your travel nursing experience. Best of luck!


Looking for more nursing and travel nursing information? Check out these helpful links!

How to Pack for Travel Nursing

How to Pack for Travel Nursing

How to Pack for Travel Nursing

When you’ve finally agreed to and signed your contract, you’re ready to move physically to a different location. There is a misconception about how hard it is to pack for your travel nursing assignment.

Packing for your assignment is not a small task since you’ll be moving the majority of your things with you.  


What You Need to Bring 

Sometimes, we tend to bring necessary things when we are traveling, but as a travel nurse, you must learn to pack light and bring only the essentials. Here’s what you need to do:


Travel Nurse Packing List

The first thing you need to do after signing your travel nursing contract is to create a list of things you need to pack. Here’s what to consider:

  • Housewares
  • Clothing and shoes
  • Uniforms, work bag, work shoes
  • Paperwork & portfolio
  • Electronics
  • Personal Care & luxury items
  • First Aid & Medical items
  • Entertainment
  • Hobbies/Activities



For your travel nursing assignment, you’re going to need to create a portfolio of all your identification. If you don’t do this, it may be difficult to access them from a distance. These items include:

  • Your birth certificate
  • Social Security Card
  • Insurance cards (auto, life, home, etc.)
  • Passport (if applicable)
  • Work Visa (if applicable)
  • Health Information/prescriptions



When you’re packing for your travel nursing assignment, you will need the majority of your clothes, if not all. Imagine packing for a week-long vacation. Packing up for your travel nursing assignment is four times that amount.

Here’s what to keep in mind before you pack:  

  • What climate are you going into? Make sure you look into the weather forecast for the location of your travel nursing assignment. You need to bring clothes that suit the weather. Chicago’s weather can fluctuate from 68 – 92 degrees during the warm months, and winters can fluctuate from 10 – -40 degrees. You need to know what climate you’re going to be in to have a good travel nursing experience.
  • How many clothes are you going to take? You don’t realize how much clothing you have until you have to pack it all up. Take your luggage with you on the plane or fill up your car with clothes. The best way to pack up your clothes is to use large bins that will fit in your car. 


Houseware and Electronics

You can live in a fully furnished place so you won’t need to transport most of your kitchen. If your abode isn’t furnished, take only the housewares you need, along with your favorite and most-used accessories. For example, few places have a crockpot.

Electronics are our most-used accessories. If you have a desktop computer, you’ll need to figure out how it will fit in your car. Laptops are always good because they enable you to work while you travel.

You’ll also need your cellphone, chargers, Alexa, PS4, Xbox, HDMI cable(s), hairdryer, hair iron, and cords.


Hobbies & Activities

Packing all your hobbies and activities for travel nursing will require some of your biggest cuts. Travel nursing is great, and you’ll find yourself doing many new things.

You may have to sacrifice your golfing equipment for the tennis rackets, and you might not be able to take your kayak or bike. The good thing is that you might be trying out new activities, especially if you’re moving to a different part of the US.

The amount of stuff you take will depend on the size of your car and how much you can fit in it


Personal and Luxury Items

Remember, you’re also packing for yourself! Make sure you take things you really enjoy, such as your favorite purses, dresses, blanket, pillow, etc… But keep in mind that there’s a limit on how much you can transport. 

Once you’ve packed it all up, there’s one more step before you can take on your travel nursing assignment. Go through your list again and ensure you have everything you’ll need.

Remember to evaluate how well you packed when you reached your destination. Create a note of things you forgot and a list of things you rarely used. This way, you’ll be better prepared for your next contract. 

Looking for more nursing and travel nursing information? Check out these helpful links!