Toxic relationships are dangerous to your health; they will literally kill you. Stress shortens your lifespan. Even a broken heart can kill you. There is an undeniable mind-body connection. Your arguments and hateful talk can land you in the emergency room or in the morgue. You were not meant to live in a fever of anxiety; screaming yourself hoarse in a frenzy of dreadful, panicked fight-or-flight that leaves you exhausted and numb with grief. You were not meant to live like animals tearing one another to shreds. Don’t carve a roadmap of pain into the sweet wrinkles on your face. Don’t lay in the quiet with your heart pounding like a trapped, frightened creature. For your own precious and beautiful life, and for those around you — seek help or get out before it is too late. This is your wake-up call!
Should you help someone who is reaching out and deeply-hurting? Absolutely. Do what you can to help people but have the wisdom to accept your limits. You can only do so much. You should never have a relationship based on guilt over someone’s poor choices. It is easy to find ourselves in denial about someone’s behavior because we so deeply wish they could escape their pain and suffering. But what we want for others doesn’t work unless they want it for themselves. People must save themselves, and you can only help a person who genuinely wants it and is ready.
You have permission to walk away from anything that doesn’t feel right. Trust your instincts and listen to your inner-voice — it’s trying to protect you. Never stop sharing your love with people; that’s why you were put on Earth. But sometimes the way to share your love is to let someone go. Staying in an unhealthy relationship can keep both of you from finding your way and moving to the next level in your life. Sometimes the best way to save someone is to walk away. Real love sometimes means saying goodbye.
“It takes a lot more courage to let something go than it does to hang on to it, trying to make it better. Letting go doesn’t mean ignoring a situation. Letting go means accepting what is, exactly as it is, without fear, resistance, or a struggle for control.” — Iyanla Vanzant
Your life is meant for so much more than being a life-long doormat for deadbeats, losers, gossipers, nay-sayers, dream-crushers, energy vampires, users, abusers, ragers and passive-aggressive backstabbers. Some of these people are rabidly-infected with obvious madness. Some have less obvious ways, such as the “helpful” enabler, who sends you off to your destruction with a helping hand and a smile. Some are “doubt-whisperers,” who plant seeds of non-belief in your heart to take root, only so they can then console you in your inevitable moment of defeat. There are also perpetual victims who feed on your constant attention. Call them what you want, you know exactly who I am talking about. One thing always reveals their sometimes hidden identity — after you have been around them, consider how you feel; have you been depleted and drained, or energized and inspired?
“From the backstabbing co-worker to the meddling sister-in-law, you are in charge of how you react to the people and events in your life. You can either give negativity power over your life or you can choose happiness instead.” — Anais Nin
A person at peace can immediately recognize a consciousness in crisis, whereas those in crisis cannot fully understand themselves or others. People often turn away from good advice because they need something another person can never give them — discovery. As much as we would like to help others avoid pain, sometimes we have to let go and allow them to receive their own painful lessons. Suffering is one of life’s great teachers. You cannot save people from themselves. All you can do is stand firmly in your hopes for them, with compassion.
I know you want to be a good person and be helpful to people in need, but it’s impossible to give to others if your energy has already been used-up. Being a good person has nothing to do with allowing people to destroy you. There are limits. You can best help others from a position of strength, not weakness. So, don’t forget to be good to yourself first. Don’t forget to take care of you! It is never cruel to want to save yourself from being swamped by fools. You cannot save everyone. Some people are going to destroy themselves no matter how much you try to help them. Their lives are full of emptiness, chaos, and dysfunction, and they will bring their misery and pain into your life with full-force if you allow it. Then there are others who have the outward appearance of success and are seemingly not self-destructive in nature. These people do not destroy themselves, but instead survive through the destruction of others — these are the users. Either of these types of people will latch-on to you in a death-spiral and take you down to the depths of hell with them — if you allow it. This is your life, and you have the right and responsibility to make good decisions for yourself.
Uneasiness and suffering spills out on everyone around the wounded soul who cannot see themselves. What they have not observed, accepted, and healed within themselves infects everyone they meet. Their instability shakes every encounter with uneasiness. Their desperate longing for meaningful contact and peace, is steadily amplified by their unconscious and ill-mannered quarks of petty drama, or neglect. Broken people often demand from others, what they cannot summon from within. Many wounded people who cannot be at peace with themselves, force the people around them to walk on eggshells to create the illusion of calm they demand. The cost of their feigned composure of phony harmony, is your peaceful state of mind. Their state of ease in a room, is only equal to everyone else’s state of unease. They obliviously belly laugh, while others heart palpitate. They smile, while you grit your teeth. They exhale in satisfaction, as your diaphragm flutters with anxiety. They ingratiate themselves into your deepest bonds of dependency, where you are more like a hostage than a friend, because you fear their meltdown should their affection go unrequited. The commotion they create in your life is like a toxic and confusing haze of crossed boundaries, broken trust, and endless disappointments. They are often mostly unaware of the energetic load and burden they place on others. The truth is, they cannot help themselves; they are sick, and need professional help.
Some people’s problems are more than you can bare, and without proper boundaries, in time, these people will wear you down to a frazzle. Your hope and optimism is no match for their bottomless pit. Your pep-talks and quick fixes are no match for the endless self-destruction loop running in their minds. You can give them compassion, but they will settle for nothing less than your destruction. If they don’t get help, you’re the one who will soon need it. Their unresolved traumas will seep in, as your trauma. Their wounds, will become your wounds. Their madness slowly becomes your madness. If you will honestly look in the mirror at the stress on your face, and in your eyes, you will see what they are doing to you. They are remaking you into their likeness; a terrorized person, who is desperate for peace.
“You cannot expect to live a positive life if you hang with negative people.” — Joel Osteen
You must firmly, absolutely and ruthlessly protect your safety and sanity. Misery loves good company, so if you are surrounded with drama, gossip and fools you may want to consider that you are presently at risk of becoming one of them. The real zombie apocalypse is the pandemic of drama and mediocrity. Troublemakers will infect you with the malady of their madness. And especially, if your positivity immune system is low, any exposure to a person afflicted with negativity can poison your life.
“Other people’s views and troubles can be contagious. Don’t sabotage yourself by unwittingly adopting negative, unproductive attitudes through your associations with others.” — Epictetus
You have to get these people out of your life once and for all. One of the fastest ways you can profoundly change your life is to rid yourself of toxic people. When you do come in contact with one of these people, run for your life. Get to safety. Meditatively and spiritually decontaminate yourself. Scrub down your brain with a wire-brush and remove their insanity from the corridors of your mind. Inoculate yourself immediately by creating a safe space and aligning yourself with healthy people. If you have to go it alone for a while until you find your healthy tribe and chosen family, that is fine. Being alone is much better than being around negative people out of loneliness or desperation.
“Inoculate yourself from dangerous bozos.” — Guy Kawasaki
Boundaries and risk management are very important parts of living a healthy and positive life. Even professional therapists, psychologists, and social workers draw boundaries to limit exposure to their clients. What makes you think you can handle unlimited exposure to toxic people and survive? You can still be a charitable person who helps and cares about people, without helping those very people destroy your life. Learn how to draw a line and learn how to enforce it — let people know what is and what is not accepted by you. Get selfish and take care of you. Cleanliness and order are good Feng Shui, which applies to people even more than it does to the things in your life. You must clear out what you don’t want, to make room for what you do want to arrive. The way to send a clear message that you are ready for better people in your life is to kick the rascals to the curb. The intimate space of your personal life should be reserved for amazing, beautiful, radiant souls — good, wholesome and loving people. Your truest family is your chosen family, people with whom you most identify. Make a clear decision on the type of people you want in your life and if they don’t make the cut, create some distance. It doesn’t matter if it is a close relative, a parent or a childhood friend; no matter the history — when people are toxic, disruptive and dysfunctional with no reasonable signs of recovery, then they need to go. Escaping a toxic relationship can feel like breaking a piece of your heart off; like a wolf chews its leg off to escape a steel trap. Leaving is never easy, but sometimes it’s necessary to save yourself, and others, from dying inside. Love toxic people from a distance.
Some people love to relive their pain; they are perpetual victims — self-abusing, emotional-drama junkies. They are always fanning into flames every little spark. Some people are addicted to the trauma of the drama; their raison d’etre is the daily struggle against their own created turmoil. The struggle in life is their stagecraft, where the people around them become unwitting performers in their dramatic scenes. Crisis is their sensation of being alive; spectacle is their excitement and proof of life. In absence of true passion and purpose, some people engage in the dark surrogate of petty commotion and drama. These people do not want to let go and move on, because they need to struggle and destroy, to live. Blame is their getaway vehicle they use to flee the scenes of their emotional crimes. The pain they carry within themselves is flung and strewn on everyone they encounter; contaminating every peaceful moment with spots of uneasiness and discord. They are raging against themselves. They fight outward enemies because they are afraid to confront the enemy within.
They are deeply wounded people, who can be very dangerous to your peace of mind, your family, and your life. Like a wounded animal, they will bite your hand of comfort. They will suck you into their hellish world if you let them. They will keep you there forever, for drama after drama, as their emotional support — as their prisoner. It will never end; every molehill made into a mountain of problems — mountains of madness. When you find yourself hanging off the cliff, with someone about to pull you over the edge, you have to cut the rope. Sometimes letting go of someone is the only way to survive.
Now could be the time to walk away; hell, you may even need to run. Haven’t you been listening to your inner-voice? Be honest, your gut has been screaming but you have been ignoring it. How much more of your life are you going to throw-away for a lie? Accept it. Some people never change. Some people have abusive, negative, controlling tendencies in their blood; they are wired for havoc, bickering and deception. They know of no other way to interface with others except through their created chaos. Chaos is their home-court advantage where they play their mind-games so they can have power over you; it’s a rigged game you can never win. They will wear you ragged and bring you to your knees emotionally and physically. In time they will destroy every wonderful thing you have in your life. You are in danger: your health, your peace of mind, your happiness and maybe even your life. There is more than one way to lose your life; quickly through violence, or fettered-away and wasted around dreadful, toxic people. You must take control of your life and make good decisions for yourself. The insanity must end, for your sake and for theirs.
“End it now! Don’t waste another minute dealing with a toxic, negative, energy-draining person. … Don’t waste valuable time trying to change them. Change yourself and get them out of your life! Don’t say a word; leave all of your belongings if you have to in the middle of the night. Cut off all communication. Don’t take their calls. You have heard all the lies before. They will not change. They don’t choose to change. It is who they have decided to be. Move to another city, if you must, and start all over again. Your life is worth it. You deserve to have peace of mind, a great relationship and an exciting life.” — Les Brown
We are told to love people unconditionally, but sometimes we must get rid of people unconditionally. Some people just keep slithering and oozing in through the cracks in your resolve; they refuse to respect your boundaries. No more mixed messages. You must learn how to close a door permanently. Cut, cauterize and never give them another thought. Monstrous sociopath-like disengagement is your right. Your life is worth more. Don’t waste another minute. Let them say you are awful. Block, ban, delete and disconnect. Do whatever you must to take care of yourself and don’t you dare ever feel guilty.
“Avoid negative people for they are the greatest destroyers of self confidence and self esteem.” — Zig Ziglar
There is a difference between loyalty and bondage. There is a difference between faithfulness and fearfulness. There is a difference between being devoted and being dominated. The difference is called freedom, it is all the difference in the world. This is your life and you get to choose what is acceptable in your relationships with absolute authority. Don’t give your authority to someone who will abuse your trust. If you have mistakenly entrusted your authority to an abuser; revoke and reclaim your power now. You are the supreme authority in your own life, and you have the final word.
On one hand, you should have deep respect for the intrinsic value of each soul as an equal being of divine creation. Hold each person in your mind with reverence, respect and high regard. On the other hand you have to recognize that some of these beings, while deserving of respect at a fundamental level, are absolute disasters who will bring a calamity of misfortune into your life — if you allow it. Some people are damaged like abused animals; skittish, un-trusting, reactive, unpredictable and dangerous. They have been abused, and they will hurt you, even with the best of intentions. If you have a clear mind and peaceful life, it is very easy to spot one of these injured people. You can still love and admire the intrinsic value and beauty of all people without absorbing their toxicity and insanity. Let eternity weigh the intrinsic value of their souls, while you just get away from them. Respecting others has nothing to do with allowing them to destroy you.
Sometimes a person needs us to abandon them, but we hang-on anyway, which can be devastating for both parties. Helping others can sometimes even be a convenient distraction from addressing our own unresolved issues. When someone you know is so toxic and destructive that they are poisoning your life, you have to create some distance. They need you to walk away as much as you need it. People who are out of control desperately need to observe your healthy boundaries in-action to learn from your example. You best teach others about healthy boundaries by enforcing yours on them. There is a difference between giving-up and strategic disengagement. Know the difference. Learn how to let people go. Stop holding-on to the wrong people. Let them go on their own way; if not for you, then for them.
“Letting go means to come to the realization that some people are a part of your history, but not a part of your destiny.” — Dr. Steve Maraboli
You can help others once you are safe, secure and successful in your own life. Practically every successful person you know of is successful, in part, because they moved the destructive and disruptive people out of their lives. Successful people carefully manage their energy and associations; they are gatekeepers. Who you allow into your life, mind and heart are among the most important decisions you will ever make. Take inventory of the people with whom you spend the most time. Who you spend your time with is who you are, or who you will soon become. Limit your exposure to unhealthy and unsupportive people. Love yourself enough to say no to people who diminish your chances for a beautiful and empowered life.
Sometimes you have to get away from what you know to discover what you don’t know. It is time for the abuse, control, lies and negativity to end. Align yourself with a new tribe of healthy people who are supportive of your highest good and greatest potential. Find the people who are living the positive lifestyle you wish for yourself and who share your values, and create a new family of friends that you can call, “home.” Your new positive and supportive tribe will edify you, strengthen you and empower you to serve others in ways you would have never before imagined. Taking care of yourself is the most powerful way to begin to take care of others. It is not too late for you. It is never too late to begin loving yourself again. It is never too late to have the life you deserve. Healing for everyone begins with self-love — starting right now.
“Pause and remember— You deserve peace! So, don’t feel bad for one moment about walking away from people, jobs, and situations that keep you from having peace of mind.” — Jenni Young McGill
Some people cannot love you the way you want to be loved because they are emotionally and spiritually frozen. They recoil from or avoid affection. You will never meet a deep penetrating gaze from their shallow eyes; only a surface glance. They will touch your hand with their hand, but never with their heart. They will serve your body but not your soul. They can only connect with you through utility, but never passion. If you need cupcakes or a jar opened, they are perfect; if you need compassion or wisdom, you are all alone. They are only a person as society made them, not as nature intended them. They live life so perfectly but know nothing of life at all. They did everything they were told to be a good person but are hardly a person at all. They are empty. They are dead inside. They will break your heart if you let them. They are usually very judgmental. They see themselves as nice but are often mean and cold. They feel themselves superior. They think everything they do is exactly the way it is supposed to be done. They are repeaters. They lack original thought. If you challenge their slumber with awakened thoughts, they will panic and flee. They will make you feel crazy because they only believe what the masses believe. They are the embodiment of the masses because they have not become their own individual person. Individuation is an attainment of spiritual maturity — frighteningly seldom attained in today’s world. You cannot change these people. They are trapped inside of themselves; stunted. You will waste your whole life waiting for them to wake-up to the treasure of what you have to offer.
Letting go is a process of recognition, confrontation, acceptance, and healing. Letting go simply means not suffering any more than absolutely necessary, but just enough to expand and strengthen ourselves. Some suffering is needed to deepen our compassion, to grow, and to learn. Letting go means you have learned enough, and now have compassion for yourself. Letting go means not touching that sore spot until it is infected, and instead letting it heal. Letting go means carrying a permanent scar, but not a permanent wound. Letting go means you may have walked through hell, but came out the other side ready to make your life a heaven. Letting go means you refuse to be a victim forever, by letting one moment define the rest of your life. Letting go means you accept change, and you accept that your pain is not permanent. Letting go means you accept that you cannot take away the past, but you insist that the past cannot take away your future. Letting go means you are ready to move forward and live! Letting go means you are ready to move forward and live. Letting go means you are no longer afraid. It was always fear that held you prisoner; letting go means you are finally free. Now may be the time to finally listen to your heart, and do what you have known you must do, and let them go.
“Pause and remember— Sometimes, what seems like a very negative or challenging event is what puts us in alignment with our greater purpose.” — Jenni Young McGill
No one wants to give-up on someone they love, but sometimes we are forced to make hard decisions by extraordinary suffering. It’s easy to judge, or say, “never-give-up,” until you have been there. Eventually, you begin to realize that life is too short and your powers to teach, influence or heal are limited. You finally accept that their emptiness, pain, and dysfunction requires more than you have to give. You can’t hand your whole life and soul over to someone who doesn’t even care about their own. You can only hold-the-line for someone hell-bent on self-destruction for so long, but when you start getting rope burns on your hands, you have to let go. You also must be careful fighting someone else’s demons — it may awaken your own! Some of the people we adore most — like the moth to the flame — are going to destroy themselves. Their attraction to their inevitable undoing is heartbreaking to watch, and something you will never understand. As much as you love someone, you can’t make their decisions or live their life for them. They must make the hard decisions all on their own. It hurts to watch. It is awful. Letting go is an excruciating heartbreak; mourning the death of what once was. If you did let someone go, and you still have guilt because of it, it’s time to forgive yourself and begin to heal. If it is time to let someone go, for their sake, or for yours, then this may be your confirmation.
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