Nutric People Are the Opposite of Toxic—Here’s How to Tell If You Tick the Boxes

Photo: Getty Images/westend61
Today in news that makes me question if I'm actually a good person, there's a type of personality out there called "nutric" and experts say we should all aspire to be this way. Someone with a nutric personality is basically Tom Hanks—the exact opposite of a toxic person.

According to George S. Everly, Jr., PhD, ABPP, FACLP, a nutric person is someone who is supportive and fosters others' growth and development. Basically, they help others realize their dreams. So it's not only good to be a nutric person, but to surround yourself with them, too. "One’s happiness and success in life is often related to having someone who supports you, someone who nourishes you, someone who supports your hopes and dreams, and perhaps most importantly someone who helps you feel good about yourself," says Dr. Everly. Plenty of studies confirm that positive social connections are key to thriving in life—in fact, some researchers believe they might be the most important factor when it comes to resilience.

So how do you tell if you—and the people around you—have nutric personalities? These are the six traits to look for:

  1. Nurturing: In Dr. Everly's words, this means you're "supportive and encouraging," and "motivating but not demanding." You genuinely want to lift others up and help them realize their full potential.
  2. Understanding: You're able to empathize with people and appreciate their POV.
  3. Trustworthy: Betrayal is not in your vocab and people feel like they can trust you.
  4. Reliable: You're consistent and "act and think in a pattern that is usually predictable," which puts people at ease.
  5. Integrity: You have this thing called a "moral compass."
  6. Confidence: But like, not a narcissist.

One of the best ways to attract nutric people into your life is to be one yourself. By exhibiting these qualities, you're more likely to appeal to people who will give the same back to you—and you won't have to waste as much energy on weeding out those who are unhappy, insecure, and emotionally exhausting. "While it is important to recognize and avoid toxic people, it may be even more important to recognize and attract nutric people," Dr. Everly says, noting that there's not much you can do to change a toxic person. Okay, Dr. Everly—thinking I can change someone who is toxic is literally one of my major personality traits.

These are 5 signs that you're in a toxic friendship. And when it comes to personality traits, can you actually "fake it until you make it?"

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