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Toxic Relationships, Toxic Health

To be truly thriving, we get to be intentional with all aspects of our deep health.

What makes up our deep health? According to Precision Nutrition, there are 6 components that make up our deep health which are relational, existential, mental, physical, emotional, and environmental. I'll add spiritual health to that list as well. I will very briefly define each before going any further.

Relational- Being connected and authentic with others. Feeling supported and like you "belong".

Existential- Feeling a sense of meaning and purpose in life

Mental- Being alert, focused, competent, and thoughtful. Learning, remembering, and solving problems well.

Physical- Feeling vibrant, energized, and thriving. Performing and functioning well.

Emotional- Experiencing a full range of emotions and EXPRESSING THEM APPROPRIATELY.

Environmental- Knowing your everyday surroundings support your health and well being.

Spiritual- Acknowlegding, forming, and building a relationship with something greater than yourself. Understanding you are not the center of the universe.

With this post, I am going to focus solely on relational health and how it can either support or harm our overall wellbeing.

Someone who was once close to me, explained to me how crabs work when they are grouped together in a tank. If one of them begins climbing out of the tank, the other crabs will actually grab it and pull it back down into the tank. At surface level, maybe this example doesn't hit home but maybe you have some relationships like this in your life. When you begin to elevate, there are people close to you who will grab you and start to pull you back down. We cannot change these people but we can change our own environment, which includes the people we spend time with. And yes, this includes our own blood. In fact, a lot of times, our family members are the most toxic relationships we have in our life. This may or may not be true for you, but what I am trying to point out is that you have one life to live, and we cannot allow ANYONE to drag us down.

I'm writing and sharing this piece for myself just as much as anyone else who may read it.

If you have a relationship you are constantly questioning and something always seems off, that is probably not a healthy relationship for you. It shouldn't feel like work. This does not mean there is not work required in a relationship but if its a healthy relationship for you, it won't feel that way. 2 Corinthians 6:14 tells us, ”Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?“ 2 Corinthians‬ ‭6‬:‭14‬ ‭ESV‬‬. In other words, to be unequally yoked is to be in a situation that binds you to the decisions and actions of people who have values and purposes incompatible with your own values and purposes.

The longer we stay in these relationships, the more toxicity grows and will even begin to spread. Do you have that friend or person in your life, whenever you are around them, you tense up. You're just waiting for them to complain about something. They are constantly in victim mode. Well, we can all become that person and show up in our lives in that way, when we are harboring resentment and toxic energy. Hangout with positive people, and you show up with positive energy, hangout with toxic people, and you show up with toxic energy.

Unlike other habits in our lives, with people, disconnection can be hard because of our hope for that person or people in our life. We continue to hope that, "things will be different this time" and they never are. At some point, the truth is there and it has been revealed. With that, am I able to walk away and fight for my own peace? It's okay to love people and want the best for them but we should not want more for other people then we do for ourselves. Forgiveness sometimes requires walking away. At some point, continuing to go back to a relationship is actually enabling the other person and damaging to us.

I would encourage you to take an inventory of the people in your life and specifically, the 5 closest people to you. Ask yourself, "are they lifting me up? Or, are they pulling me down?"

Whatever answer comes to mind, is most likely the correct answer. Don't continue to go back to relationships that are damaging as they will seep into every single area of your life.

Healthy relationships are like fire in the fire place. Calm, peaceful, and serene. However, if the fire gets out of the fire place, and gets somewhere else in your house, it will burn your house to the ground.

If you're on the fence about any relationships in your life, go to God in prayer and seek wise counsel. If you seek, you will find your answer.

I hope you enjoyed this read! If you found it to be helpful, please like, comment and share it.

Thank you!!

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