This is the second in a series of posts on toxic relationships. Click here for part one.
Toxic relationships drain your resources. They cause you to doubt yourself, your choices and even you’re worth. Learning to identify toxic relationships is an important step toward protecting yourself from them.
Is there someone in your life who. . .
leaves you feeling sad, angry, or emotionally drained?
criticizes and belittles you?
dismisses your feelings as invalid or untrue?
manipulates you with guilt?
goes to extreme lengths to justify his or her behavior when (s)he has hurt you?
always takes more of your time, energy, resources than (s)he gives?
Understanding the impact this person has on you is the first step toward changing it.
Write down your answers to the following questions.
Think about your relationship on a scale of 1 to 5. How much do you feel you receive from the relationship? How much do you feel you give?
What are the top three things you’d like to change in this relationship?
How do you feel when you’re with this person?
Are you struggling with feelings of resentment toward him or her?
How comfortable are you saying no to this person?
Think about your answers to these questions. What do your answers tell you about the relationship, yourself, or the person you’re in the relationship with?
Sometimes we stay in toxic relationships because we’re sure that if we just give a little more or work a little harder we’ll get what we need from this relationship. Is there something (i.e. love, approval, validations, understanding) you need from this relationship that feels elusive? Give yourself some time to think about these questions and your answers. Remember, awareness is the first step toward change.
Stay tuned for Part Three of this series, Can This Relationship Be Saved?
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