A small gleaning from Austin Kleon’s blog:
Some People are Toxic. Avoid Them. T]here is a test to determine whether someone is toxic or nourishing in your relationship with them. Here is the test: You have spent some time with this person, either you have a drink or go for dinner or you go to a ball game. It doesn’t matter very much but at the end of that time you observe whether you are more energized or less energized. Whether you are tired or whether you are exhilarated. If you are more tired then you have been poisoned. If you have more energy you have been nourished. The test is almost infallible and I suggest that you use it for the rest of your life. - Milton Glaser
It is important to recognize the tasks, the actions and the people who are vampires in your life. Often lovingly we end up allowing too much time and proximity to the undeserving. A proximity that is bound to someday hurt you or at the least, stray you away from what you strive for. Saying NO, is the best thing. If saying no is hard, start with keeping a distance and tapering off the energy you spend incrementally. You will definitely thank yourself for it.