Do you have any relationship in your life (romantic or platonic), that keeps you off-balance? People who seem to always be surprising you with negative curveballs, raising your anxiety for no apparent reason, and really just leaving you feeling bad about yourself?

If you answered “yes” to the above questions, you are in a toxic relationship, and this could be your partner or even just your friend, sibling, boss, etc. Even if someone is in a power position over you, like a boss, you can still draw appropriate boundaries. This requires you deciding how you will be in the relationship, not by changing the other person.

In this Real Love Revolution video, I cover:

  • Signs of a Toxic Relationship
  • How to Change a Toxic Relationship
  • What Part You Play in the Relationship Dance
  • How to Muster the Courage Required to Change Toxic Relationships

Some of the signs that you are in a toxic relationship include a hostile atmosphere where one of you is constantly angry; the person is an energy vampire requiring a lot and gives very little, leaving you feeling exhausted; or someone who is constantly judging you. Another clear sign is poor communication, feeling that no matter how you respond you’re always feel blamed for not responding appropriately or correctly. In these types of relationships, there’s never-ending drama. There’s a lot required from you, even if you don’t want to give it.

Has someone come to mind at this point? Do you know what relationships in your life are toxic?

If we are related to people who are toxic (unlike toxic friends who you can kind of break up with), it becomes complicated. You can’t change the other person, but all relationships are a dance, so you can change your steps in the dance and see how it changes the relationship.

To change your 50% of the dance, you could start by having the courage to kindly tell the other person how you feel, keeping in mind that they are most likely doing what they are doing, unconsciously.

As I said before, even if it’s your boss, you should be able to assert yourself – being assertive is the healthy place in between being too passive and being too aggressive.

Assertive doesn’t have a lot of heat, just a firmness that feels good. @terri_cole (Click to Tweet!)

By speaking up respectfully and making a simple request, you can be happy with your part of the dance. You will have decisions to make about that relationship if you stepping up inspires a more unhealthy response from the other person but at least your side of the street is clean.

Download the full Cheat Sheet: How to Identify and Change a Toxic Relationship so you can begin to surround yourself with more healthy, happy relationships. By having the courage to change your part of the toxic dance, you will most likely be rewarded with a better relationship to the person. But even if you don’t get the result you are hoping for, your healing will come from having the courage to draw healthy boundaries and stop surrounding yourself with toxic people.

Terri Cole is a licensed psychotherapist, transformation coach, and an expert at turning fear into freedom. Sign up for Terri’s weekly Newsletter, check out her blog and follow her on Twitter.


Image courtesy of Aziz Acharki.