Deleting Toxic Friends — and Finding Yourself in the Process

For many women, friendships can either lift us up or weigh us down. If you find yourself in a negative situation where you’re unhappy with a friend, it’s time to slowly omit her from your life. Many women feel they need to have a “BFF” at all times, but when a relationship takes a turn for the worse, it’s time to put your own mental health first.

Eliminating these sour relationships from your life can be a tedious process, but with some guidance, it can be done. And whether the feeling of entrapment has to do with history — you’ve been friends with the person since a young age — or you feel she has no one else to turn to, you need to take action to help yourself.

Wanting to remain in a negative relationship is understandable — especially if you’ve been with that person for years. But when you get that feeling that something isn’t right, then it’s time to put a halt to the so-called friendship.

Before you end the friendship you have to first know for a fact that your relationship is negative, and that this connection is making you feel more distressed than fulfilled. Have you established that this person is no longer supportive of your life goals? Is she putting you down, and constantly saying negative remarks about you and things that you do? Then this is not the person you want to be around years from now. Once you’re aware of the issues that are keeping you from having a healthy relationship, then it will help you even more when it’s time to let go.

Here are some tips on  investing more time in the woman you were before you got involved in a toxic friendship:

Connect with friends who share the same interests. There are so many different web sites that can help you find groups that you may be interested in. Meetup.com is a great way to find local groups that share your same passions. If you’re a woman who writes, then you can find a group near your hometown for locals who may be professional or aspiring writers.

Find your niche. Identify something that you love to do that keeps you content. Oftentimes, we get into a relationship and put so much emphasis on the other person that we lose ourselves in the process. This is the perfect time to introduce yourself to something you always wanted to do, but never had the courage to try. If you’ve always thought about taking risks, try bungee jumping or skiing — and enjoy the benefits of it alone.

Write it out. If you find yourself thinking about old times with “friends,” then it’s time to get your mind back on track. Now that you’re free to express yourself more, spend this time focusing on writing about where you want to be in the future — there’s nothing holding you back now!

Express yourself through poetry or writing creative essays.  Go as far as becoming a published author. There’s absolutely no limit to your writing. Our best writing usually stems from hard-hitting experiences — why not share that with the world?

Know who you are. I’m pretty sure most of your time was spent hanging out at places your friends usually enjoyed. Well, it’s time to focus on visiting some of the places you’ve always wanted to visit. If you love museums, and never had someone to tag along with you because it wasn’t their thing, then take a trip — solo. You don’t always need someone by your side when it comes to enjoying the things you love in life.

No matter what direction you decide to take, just remember that your health, as well as your passions in life, comes first. You have to know who you are before you can have a healthy, happy relationship with others. So, take this time to explore your life without the negative weight of others. Enjoy your freedom and time to yourself while you can.

* Photo source

* Written for girlstalk.com

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