Good Morning Everyone,
This morning we will finish this lesson on unhealthy relationship patterns. It is key for us to be aware of these patterns in others as well as ourselves. the reason being, relationships involve 2 people and what they each bring to the relationship. if the relationship is based on "what can I get out of this relationship" it will be unhealthy from the beginning. if we start a relationship with this in mind it will only go downhill from there. Lets begin:
Why do we stay connected with others that make us feel totally drained afterwards?
• We want to help... It’s human nature to want to help others but there is a fine line between helping and being co-dependent with someone.
If you have a friend who just calls to tell you how bad her/his life is and never wants to hear how things are going in your life, this is most likely a draining and unhealthy friendship for you
In situations like this, our intention to help will only encourage any negative attitude that may be present and any need for unhealthy attention.
• We want to feel needed..We all like to think we have something to give that is of value to others. When we are there for our friends it gives us a sense of value and worth. But if our desire to give to others is fueled by what we get out of it then it becomes unhealthy.
There is a fine line between being helpful and being used. When we are being taken advantage of it’s far more damaging to our self-confidence than the feeling of being helpful.
• Fear we won’t have any friends and be left alone...It is actually better to be alone than to be with someone who tears you down, but that is not always what we think. Sometimes the need to not be alone is stronger than the fear of being alone and causes us to make decisions that are harmful for us.
True friends will be there for you, you don’t have to worry! If they are not true friends they will not be around for long anyway.
• Regret...The fear of letting go of a friendship that is not good for you can be frightening if you don’t have someone else to take their place. In other words, you don’t want to do something drastic, because what if they don’t come back? After all you don’t want to do something you might regret later.
It is healthy to be protective of your time and mental well being. It is unhealthy when we let the demands of others rob of us our peace, personal time, family time and over all emotional well being.
▪ The desire to be liked... A person’s desire to be liked is something we all want, it is a part of who we are. We all want to be valued and accepted as a person but sometimes a person’s need to be loved and accepted can be so strong that they will do anything to get it even if it means sacrificing some of their own self esteem in the process.
I have to like ‘who I am first’ even if someone else doesn’t like me. The best person for me is me not what someone else thinks of me. When we let others dictate our value and worth we are pulled down to their standards not ours.
If we are not spending time with others that build us up and allow us to be ourselves then they are allowing them to have a negative effect on us instead of a positive one.
▪ It’s not easy to break up with friends.... Even when we feel like we need to back away from a particular friendship it is not always easy to do. Why? One reason is, it is difficult to say no. It can seem to be rude so we give in again until the next time and so the cycle continues.
Even though it can be difficult to say no sometimes, we need to realize that there is probably more going on within us that needs to change if we struggle with saying no.
We need to realize that first of all, it is important and right for us to have a healthy relationship and that we are worth it to be in one. When we are truly honest with ourselves and with others it brings the best out in everyone even if it may mean walking through some difficult things to get there.
▪ We feel a sense of loyalty....When you have known someone for a long time you may feel more obligated to them and addressing issues within the friendship becomes more difficult. Sometimes it is just needed to move on and in situations where one is moving on and the other is not can put a strain on the relationship.
It is always healthy to keep moving forward and that means changes. To move ahead can mean moving away from old habits and unhealthy patterns that are needing to be changed. If our friendships are keeping locked in those unhealthy patterns it is time for a change.
Friendships should be there for us as a support not as a hindrance. The people we choose to associate with should inspire us and cause us to become the best that we can be. The key is to be aware of who we are associating with. Unhealthy friendships take a lot of energy and work to maintain and in the long run we need to ask ourselves if this is really the best for us.
Things to ponder:
1. Are you a person who finds yourself being involved with unhealthy relationships more than you want to be?
2. Do you have trouble saying ‘no’ to others?
3. Would you consider yourself to be a ‘people pleasing’ person?
4. Do you struggle with your ‘value and worth’?
This concludes part 2 of unhealthy relationships, next monday we will begin lesson 4 "The Pattern of Addiction". See you next week. Have a Great week.