Over the years, I’ve learned how to avoid people. It’s all about skill, talent, and experience, I guess.

I start thinking about Dr. Sueus when I chant my avoidance mantra in my head, “I will avoid you in the streets, I will avoid you in the park, I will avoid you all day long, and I will avoid you after dark”. Yeah, it’s funny, I guess, but also disturbing. I am still not all the way sure if avoiding people is healthy, but I am a master at it. If you want to learn how to avoid people you don’t like, I will tell you how.

I am an introvert. I avoid people most of the time in social situations. However, I do talk to the grocer, the store clerk or any repairmen I invite into my home. That’s because these things are inevitable.

It’s not always easy to avoid people you don’t like or know, but I will try and make it simple for you to work on.

1. Change your phone number

One of the best ways to avoid people you don’t like is to change your phone number. More than likely, at some point, there may have been some unsavory people who’ve snatched your number. Maybe you gave it to them before you realized you didn’t like them or maybe a friend leaked out your number. Eck!

So, change your number and be extremely selective about who gets this new number. You can avoid people you don’t know by simply NOT giving them your number at all. This cuts off one avenue of communication.

2. Unfriend, unfollow and block

Honestly, sometimes I hate this age of technology. People can find you anywhere. There are few places you can actually hide away anymore. If you want to avoid someone you don’t like, for one, don’t be their friend on social media.

If it’s too late for that, unfriend, unfollow, and unblock. They say there’s no indication to the other person that you’ve done this. If you want to avoid people you don’t know, just don’t accept friend requests and definitely do not partake in personal messages. In my opinion, it’s not rude, it’s just a human right.

3. By association

Sometimes there could be someone you really don’t like being around, but there’s a mutual friend in between. This will take some finessing. You don’t have to stop being friends with one to not associate with the other.

All you need to do is find out when your friend will be around the person you don’t like, and those are the times you turn down any invitations. You can say you are busy, and this will not be a lie. You are busy taking care of your mental health. Let’s face it, some people you don’t like are also toxic to your health.

4. Avoid certain social functions

If you’re an introvert, this one won’t be that hard for you anyway. If the person you don’t like is attending a particular social function, say a birthday party, then just don’t go. You can also say you’re busy like before.

If you really want to go to the function, then you can always keep busy associating with people you like to avoid spending any time with the one you don’t like. Also, make sure you avoid all eye contact with this person, as eye contact is an expressive invitation.

5. Create boundaries

Whether other people understand or not, it doesn’t matter. Boundaries are important, and you need to be able to say no to associating with people if you want to.

If you don’t like them or if you don’t know them, you should be able to say, “I don’t have to deal with this social interaction if I don’t want to“. You have the freedom to be quiet, calm or walk away. You even have the freedom to refuse invitations even from your family if you need to.

6. Limit social events

I use myself as an example for this one. I personally feel just fine if I attend one social event a month if that. My husband is more sociable than me and likes to go out every week, even more than once sometimes. It actually drains me to do this.

Sometimes when I do go out, I see people I don’t like or people I don’t know. This causes anxiety. So, to make things simpler, I try to limit my social events to whatever I can handle. It’s best for my mental health. At times I try to push myself, but never beyond what I can take, especially when I don’t like certain people in crowds.

7. Work from home

If you really want to avoid those you don’t like, work from home. This means the only contact you must have is with those you work for online or friends of your choosing. All it takes to walk away is the simple click of a button. People who work from home, especially those who suffer from anxiety, find it refreshing to have this sort of work atmosphere.

Is avoidance normal?

To a certain extent, I think a little avoidance is normal. If you cannot avoid some people in your life, you may encounter episodes of anger or anxiety. However, you cannot avoid every person or every situation that doesn’t serve you. Unfortunately, there comes a time when you must face the music and face your demons.

The bottom line is, it’s okay to avoid someone you don’t like or don’t know sometimes. It’s just important to do it in a respectful way. I hope this helps. Now, going back into my cave. See you later!

References:

  1. https://thoughtcatalog.com
  2. https://www.businessinsider.com
Sherrie Hurd, A.A.

Copyright © 2012-2020 Learning Mind. All rights reserved. For permission to reprint, contact us.

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Avatar
    Irene

    Wow sounds like me.

    1. Sherrie
      Sherrie

      Thanks for reading, Irene. Yes, I try to avoid people at times just so I can have “me” time. I love “me” time.

  2. Avatar
    Sue

    I use 2 phone numbers via 2 mobile phones but a dual SIM phone will work, too.

    The first number is for the public: strangers, businesses, work contacts, registering for apps or contests, and acquaintances. I mostly use this phone number for exchanging text messages and rarely answer it.

    The second phone number should be the number shared with all your favourite people who know and respect your boundaries.

    If a friend or family member shares your second phone number with an unwanted person or company, limit that friend or family member to your first phone number. If that over-sharing person still calls you on the second (private) phone number, block them or put them on a wanker group list which has a distinctive (or silent) ringtone so that you know not to even bother looking at the phone when it rings.

    1. Sherrie
      Sherrie

      Sue,

      Seems like you have it all worked out in order to keep your life peaceful. To some, this system may seem strange, but if it works, it works. If you feel the need to move out of a certain comfort zone, then you should do this on your own time.

  3. Avatar
    Tairie

    Wow, I would NEVER give a person I don’t like that much power over my life. Some of the advice given to introverts are unhealthy, and this article is gives some unhealthy advice.

    1. Sherrie
      Sherrie

      Tairie,

      I guess that just depends on what gives you peace of mind at the moment. Some people have to do these things just to function.

    2. Avatar
      John

      Tairie – letting people inject themselves into your life is also giving them way too much power. For introverts, doing the things this article suggests is way easier than socializing when you don’t want to. If it weren’t, we wouldn’t do it. You clearly don’t understand introverts (don’t worry – it’s a common problem) so I’m afraid your opinion isn’t worth much in this case. Just leave us alone – it doesn’t hurt you to do that.

      1. Sherrie Hurd, A.A.
        Sherrie Hurd, A.A.

        Without being harsh from either side, let’s just say we are all different. We are all free to be around people or not be around people. There should always be respect in both areas.

        I am an introvert, and I have the right to be alone as long as I want. and should never be forced to do otherwise.

Leave a Reply