How Do I Quit A Toxic Relationship?
First of all, I would like to congratulate for realizing that you are in a toxic relationship. Some people do not know their relationship is unhealthy, and they managed whatever comes their way until it is too late to go out of it.
Secondly, you need to know that your relationship does not complete you. If you have this mindset, “without my partner, I am nothing” you need to change it. It takes two “whole” persons to come together to form a healthy bond. Therefore, you should not need anyone to complete you. Most people who think they are getting fixed or complete because of their partner actually get ripped off. If you know the strength that lies within you, you would not need to be bullied into staying in a relationship.
Furthermore, it is important to note that a toxic relationship do not have to be romantic; it could be a Boss-employee, mother-daughter, friendships, or even waiter-eater relationships can be toxic. If someone’s consistently brings you down, or you always feel worse after interacting with someone, there is a fat chance that your relationship with this person(s) is toxic.
However, following these steps will enable you to start a journey of self-completion, it is the pathway of knowing to revealing the real strength, beauty, and wisdom that lie within you.
Take off the baby gloves
If you want to be truly free, you have to step out of denial. Lying to yourself about what you are experiencing will do you more harm than good. If you can sincerely answer the following questions, then you are on your way to freedom.
• Do you feel drained or uplifted after spending time with Z?
• Do you want to spend time with Z or do you feel obligated to spend time with Z?
• Do you always feel disappointed by Z’s comments and behavior?
• Are you putting more effort in holding the relationship than Z? If yes, in what ways?
• Do you even like Z? If Z and you were invited to a mutual friend’s party, would you walk up to Z and want to be a boyfriend/girlfriend knowing what you currently know about Z?
It will be of no help to you if you deny or give false answers to these questions. The answers will enable you to move on.
Identify the benefits
Everything in this life has an advantage and a disadvantage, including toxic relationships. Surprised? Well, don’t be. Knowing the good things you enjoy from the relationships helps you to understand why it is difficult in the first place to quit the relationship.
Keep records of your emotions
One of the ways to know if your relationship with Z is toxic or not is keeping personal records of the feelings after every meeting. Sometimes other people can easily detect and tell us that our relationship with someone is bad for us, because of their objectivity which we do not have because of the closeness we have with the person. However, notes do not lie; whatever you record will stay true to you. Noting your emotions after each meeting helps you to see patterns, others may have told you.
Now that you know the pleasure as well as your emotions you derive from the relationship, it is to get alternative sources of wholeness, and peace. Remember that a good alternative does not depend on another person, if not it may result in another toxic relationship. You need to be whole before you can enjoy a relationship. List out things you could do instead of staying with Z that will make you happy. It could be taking your dog out for a walk, listening to meditation CDs, baking, yoga, helping someone, watching a movie, learning new skills, and so on. After listing them, indulge in them, make them your new habits, but remember to live a healthy lifestyle.
Surround yourself with the right kind of friends
Twenty friends cannot be friends for twenty years; I am not trying to be pessimistic here, but it is the truth. You are not obligated to be with friends who make you feel you are not worth their attention. Make it a habit to surround yourself with people who motivate, inspire, help, and care about you. Ensure the people you surround yourself with do not get themselves enmeshed in their own toxic relationship. For instance, “rolling” with friends who are in an abusive relationship may make you think your toxic relationship is “heaven” so be wise with whom you pick to hang out
Surrounding yourself with the right kind of people is good, but you can make it better by learning how to motivate yourself. Let’s face it, sometimes your friends might be busy with their work, do not limit your happiness to your friends alone. Learn to enjoy your company, not because you do not have options, but because you just need to have a “me” time. It will boost your confidence and helps you relate to people more. If you do not enjoy your company, why do you expect others to enjoy yours? You are fantastic; so appreciate your uniqueness.
My break up with a friend left opened a can of uncertainties; I became withdrawn and was unsure of myself. Some of my friends tried to make me see that there is nothing wrong with me, but I waved it off and told them they are trying to play nice because they are my friends. The break up shook and reduced my confidence. However, I was able to move past the hurts, and disappointment because of repeated affirmations.
I could not believe my friends because I felt they were loyal. So a friend said something to me one day “ if you do not believe us, at least you can believe God” her word struck a chord, and I went back to the Word of God to find comfort. I got different scriptures and pasted it everywhere in my room. The more I see the words, the more my belief system changed, and there was a positive change in my life. Words you hear or read are powerful, and they can change your perception of anything. So why not take advantage of this power and paste the right things you need to see happening in your life?
Take some time off
Allow some time to rest, reduce some activities; it does not mean you are moving back to your shell, you are merely reenergizing. It may be the hardest thing to do, but rest and solitude can help you to heal faster. I know sometimes we get tempted to dive into work, meet new people, or go partying just get rid of the pain- those are temporary solutions, you need to take your time off from everything and let yourself heal.