Toxic relationship Recovery
A toxic relationship is a pollutant. It seeps inside of your mind, body and spirit and makes you sick. It can be a relationship of any kind, a social, parental, career, or intimate relationship. The common denominator is a toxic or dysunctional person.
Toxic people come in many forms but there are core behaviors that make them dysfunctional in relationships.
They try to control you.
This person attempts to tell you how to think, feel, or behave. They try and convince you what to believe, especially if it is against what they believe. This person leaves you feeling powerless.
They hurt you in some way.
This can be verbally, physically, financially, emotionally, psychologically, etc.
They play emotional or psychological games with you.
They go back and forth in their desire to be with you. One minute they want you, the other minute they don’t. You’re constantly confused as to where you stand with them.
They lie, manipulate, blame, and deny the problems in the relationship that they cause.
They will blame all the problems on you.
They are actively addicted to something and refuse to use the tools to get better.
Of course there are many more ways one is toxic. But this is a good start.
But now, let’s say you’ve recognized and decided to get out of the toxic relationship. You understand the likelihood of this person changing is slim, so you leave.
What’s next? Do you just magically get better? Does time really heal all wounds? Are you somehow more equipped to seek a better partner next time because now you “know better?”
The short answer is “no”. Time heals nothing. All the time in the world can pass and you could stay feeling broken. The question is, “Will you seize the opportunity to heal at the time it’s presented?”
If you don’t actively pursue your healing, you’re almost guaranteed to choose another person who picks up where the other left off.
Healing isn’t some vague concept. Once we know the damage that was caused by the toxic relationship, we can predict what one needs to do to heal. Healing is a verb. It’s something we do not something we feel. There is a step by step process to toxic relationship recovery.
What do you need to heal in your recovery process so that you take your power back and have the healthy relationships you deserve?
It wasn’t long ago that I was in the same situation.
My toxic relationships led me down a path to self destruction. At my worst, I was self medicating my anxiety and depression with food and alcohol. I had never healed the original toxic relationship that set the tone for all the rest. So, I kept repeating the pattern. I was a narcissist magnet.
That’s when I created the map to healing with our Recovery Program called LYFE School. Love yourself First Empowerment School was created out of my desperation to heal. I had to recognize and systematically work through the damage caused by the toxic relationship(s). Of course I’d love to have you in our program, but if you choose another path to recovery, you’ll still need to focus on these 8 key areas to get better.
Here’s what we focus on:
Your self esteem has been badly injured.
Self esteem is the gasoline that fuels your ability to make your dreams real. It’s ultimately what you believe to true about you deep down. Likely, you’ve believed you’re somehow responsible for the bad behavior of other people. You internalized their mistreatment and made it mean something about your value. You’ll need to work to remember your worth. Gaining self esteem or self love is the result of the recovery process. Self love is the fruit of your labor. You’re likely not to truly know what it means to love yourself until you engage in the recovery process. Self love is not bath bombs and manicures. It’s a deep set of behaviors and beliefs that demonstrate your ability to respect care for and lead yourself in empowered, responsible and compassionate ways. Self love is something you DO, not something you feel.
You’ve lost yourself.
You’ve been playing the role that’s been assigned to you by the toxic person. And likely, you’ve been whoever they told you to be. You morphed yourself and shape shifted as a way to try and mitigate or prevent the toxic person’s behavior. Although it never worked consistently, you kept sacrificing your true self in favor of keeping the peace. You’ll need to remove all of the false selves you have created (in LYFE School. We call those Attachment Personality Patterns) and excavate your authentic self.
You stopped speaking your truth.
Somewhere along the way, you decided that your thoughts, opinions and perspectives don’t matter. You walk on eggshells and have trouble setting or holding boundaries where they count. You’ll need to work to get to the root of your truth and discover what you think, feel and want. And then you’ll need to learn to communicate that effectively with others.
You stopped feeling.
Feeling was painful in your toxic relationship, so you learned ways to cut yourself off from your feelings. Some of these numbing tactics may have included substances like food, alcohol or shopping. Maybe you over slept or overworked to avoid your feelings. But recovery is a walk home back to your sensitivity. You will have to learn how to feel your feelings again, sit and be comfortable in your own skin.
You stopped hearing or believing your intuition.
You question what’s real, normal or healthy. Toxic people gaslight which is an attempt to confuse your own reality. And they are very successful. So although you may still have that inner knowing, you have likely ignored it. It’s this repetitive self betrayal that leads to a hearing loss from your inner wisdom. You’ll need to learn how to go within again and be your own guru. You’ll learn to trust your gut.
You’ll need to work through your trust issues.
You’ll have to learn how and who to trust. You’ve likely trusted the wrong people. You’ll need to learn how to move past the old hurts so that you don’t carry that baggage into the next relationship. You will have to make sense of and fully understand the past so you do not repeat it. You will have to learn how to open to the right people and not inadvertently sabotage what’s good.
You’re loyal to a fault.
You’ll have to learn when to walk away. Loyalty has been your strength and Achilles heel. You have been loyal to a fault and it’s cost you yourself because you’ve been loyal where loyalty wasn’t deserved.
You’ll need to learn to identify and meet your own needs.
You have put yourself on the back burner and others needs and feelings have come before your own. You probably don’t even know what it is you truly need anymore. You’ll need to search deep within and discover your authentic desires and then you’ll need to learn how to meet those needs without having a rescue fantasy that the “right person” is going to do it for you.
This is the magic formula. How you decide to pursue your recovery is up to you. But I want to encourage you to consider joining LYFE School which is our recovery program for toxic relationships. We’ve got the step by step system laid out for you over a 12 week journey.
We hope you’ll take your healing journey with us!