We hear a lot about detoxing these days for our health & rightly so.
Never before in history have humans been fed so many toxins in our day-to-day lives & we are witnessing a health crisis because of it.
But what about our relationships? Many of them are toxic, too, yet we just continue to allow those relationships to harm us. To steal our peace, to harm us even physically at times. Maybe not always with violence, but it still affects our health on a scale we are only now beginning to understand as modern science is giving us copious amounts of fascinating data into how those around us affect us physically & mentally. Not just on the neurological level but also on the cellular level.
Oops, started to geeked out a sec.
The #1 cause of death in the US? Not diabetes or heart disease or even cancer it is in fact, stress.
Yes, stress is the number one cause of death in America. Let that sink in for a hot minute. Yet, that is where we seem to live now. Are you finding this to be your new normal? Stressed out all the time?
We are designed for a short burst of stress. Your ancestors had to face stress in the form of a Sabertooth tiger eating his or her face off. So when that happened, the body would activate the fight or flight response. With a surge of adrenaline, the digestive system shuts down then cortisol shoots into the nervous system. Heightening their awareness & preparing them for the run or fight of their lives quite literally. We were designed for a short burst of stress but not to live there. Likewise, if you have PTSD, your body is in a constant state of fight or flight. This will eventually kill you slowly. You will get fat & will not be able to lose weight no matter what you do. It will exhaust your adrenal glands & leave you in a constate state of chronic fatigue syndrome, Insomnia. It will wreck your parasympathetic nervous system causing a cascade of illnesses.
You do not have to be a war vet to have PTSD. Any trauma can cause it. Experiencing (even witnessing) a violent act or being in an abusive relationship. Many of us are carrying around some form of childhood trauma if we witnessed violence at a young age or any other 100 things that may have caused trauma. Trauma happens when our minds can not process what has happened. We can not come to terms with it, so we do what we are taught to do with all unpleasant emotions, and we push it deep down & we think we don’t feel it, but our body does. Left unresolved, it will never forget & it reacts to the trauma subconsciously. It does not even have to be connected to violence. It could be a feeling of abandonment or a child repeatedly to made to feel they have no voice can cause hidden trauma.
Unresolved trauma creates repetitive drama.
For those struggling with PTSD, please look into EMDR Therapy. It is a modern-day miracle & I am not exaggerating. Most people are cured within just two treatments. The method was developed by a Dr. working with gulf war vets. I personally have used this with amazing results. I have referred many others to it as well & they also have reported miraculous results. It cured my insomnia in nothing flat. I spent about a year healing my adrenal health & have been fine since & that was 4 yrs ago. I can not recommend EMDR enough. I am even considering getting certified to do it myself as I meet people daily struggling with things they could lay down for good.
EMDR Therapy can cure all forms of PTSD in just a few sessions.
For many of us, our stress does not come from PTSD, but perhaps our jobs or just trying to make ends meet these days. How many activities do you have to run your kids to these days? It’s out of control for far too many families. That can certainly be a challenge.
But what I want to talk about now is the stress relationships bring us. Friendships included. How many have friends that stress you the F out? Show of hands… come on now, think about it. That one that comes & just hangs out but can’t take a hint to go, Bro? The ones that are a trainwreck & lives the role of the victim in everything. Always defeated & always draining?
How many of you have friends you really don’t even like? How many have friends that you inherited? You know, like maybe a friend of a friend that made their way into your circle. Do you hate spending time with them? They may be super negative or abuse substances too much, cause a scene, loud & just a dick, take your pick.
The worst are couple friends.
Like you love her & can’t stand him or vice-versa? Maybe you have family members that are far too intrusive into your life? They do not observe boundaries, perhaps?. Maybe it is that Mother in law, sister, or cousin that constantly brings you their drama? Drama becomes addictive, FYI.
By now, you certainly can think of one or more persons that steals your peace & robs you of joy?
Let me say this one thing very clearly. No one. No one has the right to be in your life. That is a privilege you allow. It is no one’s right. Not your mothers, not your sister or brother. Not even your kids once they are grown. No one has a right to be in your life. You are the gatekeeper of your peace & your joy.
You should not entertain any form of guilt or shame for removing friends or family from your life if they bring nothing positive to the table. They have no right to be in your life. You owe no one else anything, but you do owe yourself a peaceful, healthy relationship with yourself.
Rule #1 of self-love
You protect those you love & this includes yourself. When you love yourself, you will not allow anyone, including yourself, to harm you. Anyone that truly, self loves will never be in an abusive relationship as they will beat feet out of there because they love themselves more. The truth is we can not even actually love until we love ourselves completely. We love through us. It is all filtered through us. So how deeply you love you is directly in proportion to what kind of love you are actually giving out.
Most of us have a performance-based love. It’s what we are taught at home or certainly at church. I’m loveable & worthy of love as long as I do what you want. That is not love. That is control. Most of us walk around with a counterfeit understanding of love. Think about that a bit. Think about what real love should look like sometime.
We have this misconception that self-love is selfish.
We are taught that love is sacrifice & pain. Where did we come up with these ideas? Well, most of us have seen this drama play out growing up. Our Mothers may have suffered & sacrificed for us & we think that is what loves looks like. Misery & anguish? Giving up our needs to our own harm is not self-love. My mother made sacrifices & I appreciate them now, but she sure made equity in trade in the form of guilt & shame for what she had to give up for us. She wore that like a shiny badge of honor, never letting any of us forget it. Many of us come to believe this is what love looks like. Then we mirror it in our lives subconsciously. We pass these behaviors on to our children. We do this with all sorts of stuff. But that is another article.
I was recently heard that we must suffer because Jesus suffered for us. With a furrowed brow, I responded, ” but then wasn’t that the point of his suffering, so we would not have to? It makes no sense that he & we should suffer. Then his suffering really was for nothing?
Now I get that sometimes love calls for sacrifices, but love is not sacrificing. It is not letting people run all over our boundaries. Boundaries are not selfish but self-preserving. Hell, many of us don’t even know what our boundaries are? Some of you have no boundaries. I didn’t use to just a few years ago. I never considered the concept even. Because I was not taught about boundaries as a kid growing up, there were no boundaries in my house with eight siblings, let me tell you. OMG, I could tell you tales that would make you cringe. When My parents would go out, my house turned into Mad Max & the freaking Thunderdome. No kidding, once, my sister had scissors impaled in her neck. I’m talking those old heavy metal tailor-style scissors. My brothers would tie me to the wall & throw darts at my legs & laugh hysterically when they stuck in my legs & feet. I’m not kidding or exaggerating. Anyway, I’m getting off track.
Only you can protect your peace.
Only you can protect your peace as it is vital to enjoying a healthy, happy life. Stress kills & your toxic friends and family is freaking killing some of you.
I encourage you to take a good long look at your relationships. Take an inventory. Do they enhance your life or drain you? Do they bring you joy & fulfillment, or take it from you?
I took one such inventory a few years back & when I was honest with myself, I realized I had a lot of friends I inherited from other friendships. These were not people I made a conscious decision to be friends with. So I detoxed them out of my life. I noticed my life improved & my stress went down. I then looked at all my friendships with scrutiny. Why was I friends with this person or that one? I realize many of these friends were not good for me. Some drank far too much or abused other substances. I don’t want to be around that shit. I’m not 25 anymore. As I detoxed the let’s call them bad apples, I notice a huge improvement in my life. My joy increased as I did not have the negative drain on me. No more cleaning up their messes or 3 am drunk calls to come pick them up because they were tossed out of the bar & can’t find their keys. LOL. Only for them to take a swing at you later. Yeah, that happened more than once.
I have family that is so completely negative it is painful to even converse with them. I just will not subject myself to that kind of stuff. It is like the nails on a chalkboard for me. So I remove them from my life. What do ya know, stress goes down & love & joy go up.
I know this sounds incredibly harsh & cold, but I do not feel that it is at all.
You are the gatekeeper for your life. We create the life we have by our actions or inactions.
By our thoughts, what we focus on, we attract. If you are always thinking about living in drama, guess what? You will continue to attract drama & people with drama.
Consider modern entertainment & how catty dramas suck us right into them. They are created to make you addicted to the drama, so you can’t miss an episode. Your brain squirts out a little bit of oxytocin as a reward & before you know it, you’re addicted to the whole damn fake thing.
Suck it, Ross & Rachel.
We invite this “form” of entertainment (drama) into our lives willingly every day.
When you watch something on TV or a movie your body thinks it is happening to you & responds chemically & neuroligcally. When you watch a scary movie your body thinks it is really happening to you. Filling your body with stress hormones.
When you start detoxing people, it can be hard. The truth is the people you surround yourself with either elevate you or pull you down. Many of us have nothing but people that pull us down & no one to elevate us.
It just might be time to detox some people so you can make room for some better quality people. Believe me. I am not judging anyone. I was there in the deep of it myself. But I know it can be done because I did it. It was a pivotal part for me to gain this fantastic love-filled life I lead today. Your life does not change overnight.
No bearded Genie is going to grant your wishes.
God does not just fix our problems. Simsimsalabim!
It gives us the tools to fix them & heal them ourselves. Then we are supposed to take that knowledge & help someone else heal.
The truth is if you want a better life, you must build it one brick at a time. I am afraid it takes work—really unpleasant work, in fact. But holy Batman, is it worth it. I never imagined life could be this way. The relationship detox was a significant part of this process.
When you do the work, you get the results. Dig deep. Get in there. Restructure & reorganize until you have the life you want.