Psychological insights on relationships: rejections, breakups, making relationships happy, unhealthy dynamics, and general psychology.

How To Heal From A Toxic Relationship

These are 5 steps to heal from a toxic relationship and permanently build a strong character. Read the whole article because I explain systematically how to do it.

Woman after toxic relationship

Is my relationship worth fighting for?

Here are five instances of building character after a toxic relationship:

  1. A person must move forward daily, even when it’s tough.
  2. A person has to believe in themselves.
  3. It must develop some form of self-love.
  4. He or she should carefully analyze the people who led them into that bad state.
  5. And he or she should seek professional help.
Man after toxic relationship

Recovery from toxicity in a relationship is possible. A person who wants to recover from an unhealthy relationship must be aware that it requires both:

1. taking specific actions and

2. dedicating time (sometimes a significant amount of time).

However, when these two factors are combined, a complete recovery is possible.

Out of curiosity, I searched the internet to read about what it says regarding healing from toxicity in relationships, and some of the ideas I found are good.

The internet suggests that to heal from a toxic relationship, a person needs to set boundaries, focus on self-care, process their emotions, concentrate on personal growth, re-evaluate negative beliefs, and so on.

As I mentioned, these are good suggestions. However, the problem is that people in unhealthy relationships find these tasks the hardest to accomplish because they need to figure out where to start. After erasing boundaries, it’s tough to recreate them. A person needs to learn how to do it or what boundaries are realistic to set.

Also, from past habits, they always revert to what used to be (it’s acceptable for my partner to check my phone; that’s how we did it in my previous relationship). After being persistently convinced of one reality, believing in a different one is very hard. If a person has been convinced for a long time to fear the world, it’s extremely difficult to believe that the world is not dangerous. And so on for everything else. The consequence of all this persuasion is a severely weakened character.

Next, the internet suggests working on resilience, self-confidence, emotional intelligence, etc. Again, excellent ideas. But the problem is that people who have emerged from toxic relationships have damaged or destroyed precisely these characteristics. Obviously, the question arises: how do we work on all of this?

A beautiful woman

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So, what to do?

To better understand this, let’s imagine recovery from a toxic relationship as rebuilding a destroyed house. Not only was it destroyed, but there was not much building material left. Where do we start? Of course, from the foundation itself, which we will first build, then strengthen so that it can never be destroyed again, and then we will build the ground floor.

Consider everything I’m suggesting here as a building material.

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Foundation: Building Character

1. Moving forward, even when it’s tough

Man after toxic relationship

A person must try not to let difficult days or emotions break them. They must be aware that there will be challenging moments and be able to get through them.

It’s necessary to repeat to oneself that easier days and better emotions will come and to remain optimistic even when it’s most challenging.

If this seems impossible, sometimes simply sleeping it off and waking up in the morning with new energy is enough.

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Of course, this is easier if we engage in activities that occupy our attention or tire us out physically and mentally. We may have a tough day, but our attention is more focused on something other than the problem because we’re preoccupied with something else, and time passes more quickly.

However, it’s precisely this ability to endure difficult days that builds character and self-belief. Thanks to this ability, we become proud of ourselves and stronger. If I can push through a very critical day, then I can do other things, too.

Beautiful woman after toxic relationship

We move forward by doing our daily tasks and doing something good or valuable for ourselves. We exercise, spend time with someone who uplifts us, treat ourselves to some pleasure, progress in some area, etc. This way, we signal to ourselves that we still respect ourselves and haven’t given up on progress.

Also, we are much better at tolerating things (life) when we control them than when they control us. It’s an entirely different instance.

The further away (day by day) we are from our toxic subject, the more we emotionally recover. It’s like moving away from a nuclear reactor. Its radiation decreases with every meter, and at a certain distance, you’ll start to recover.

Churchill said: If you’re going through hell, keep going.

And this is exactly that suggestion. Only if we move forward will we have the impression that we are doing something useful for ourselves. And every work on ourselves speeds up our recovery.

Attractive man standing

2. Believing in oneself

Let’s trust our judgment, even when it may be wrong. It is necessary to stop believing the other person who led us into that bad state.

Start with small, insignificant things. For example, if someone claims it’s better to go to the mountains than to the sea, trust your choice. If someone claims that one of your friends is bad and you think they’re good, trust your judgement.

If you look at it this way, you’ll see that your beliefs are just as valid as theirs (regardless of the fact that theirs are stated more decisively and aggressively) (decisiveness and aggression are part of the trick to make you believe they’re right, just like the hat and the rabbit are part of the trick).

This is done by telling yourself: I decide to believe in myself, not in you (nor in what you previously said), and then stubbornly sticking to it. When your thoughts revert to that old belief coming from that person, remind yourself that you now believe in something new.

Man sitting alone after toxic relationship

Also, repeat to yourself the convincing arguments for that new belief, and don’t “look away.” Just focus on your arguments, not on the beliefs and persuasions of the other person.

This is like learning to walk incorrectly. Your incorrect way may be more straightforward and logical, but it’s wrong, and you must constantly convince yourself to walk more correctly. It can be exhausting, but you must force yourself to believe in yourself and the arguments for it.

This serves so that the person does not make you crazy anymore, does not drag you into their dynamics, so that you do not fall under their influence again.

It also serves your recovery, because people who have been in toxic relationships for a long time often don’t trust themselves anymore.

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3. Develop some form of self-love

Love something about yourself and appreciate it, whether it’s a physical or psychological characteristic.

Here, it would help if you started with something small. Choose something and declare it good and valuable. Then, think about what you’ve chosen and engage with it. The idea is to begin by learning how to love something about yourself.

A beautiful woman is sad

Ask yourself how you would express love for someone’s trait.

I assume you would praise the person for something they are, help them nurture it, highlight it, and show them how much others appreciate it.
In the same way, express love and respect for your traits.
Afterward, add a few more things you’ll love about yourself and repeat the same process. Once enough things are added, it can be said that a person values and loves themselves.

This serves to restore your self-worth that may have been lost or destroyed in your toxic relationship. This is like first aid for your recovery.

We need to recover a little, to get to a better place, so that we can speed up our recovery.

4. Carefully observe the people who led you into a bad state

Consider them, analyze them, and engage in critical thinking about them. It’s necessary to see such people objectively. Without emotional addition or subtraction. Without psychological mechanisms and rationalization. But just who they truly are.

Black man healing after toxic relationship

Collect data about them and then analyze it.

For example, if your mother brought you into a bad state, gather information about her (how does she behave in close relationships? Where does this behavior towards you come from? What does she aim to achieve with this?) and then analyze them. Does your mother manipulate someone else? Does she use the same patterns she used on you on someone else?

Let’s be clear: It’s possible that her behavior is reserved only for you for a specific reason, but perhaps you’ll be able to find a pattern in other close relationships. The emphasis is on closeness because people behave entirely differently towards close people than towards more superficial acquaintances.
After you’ve collected the data you’ve gathered, you can confidently say: My mother is _____.
If you haven’t added or subtracted, you probably have the truth.

Woman after toxic relationship

It may be difficult for you to accept the truth, but that’s part of your healing because only then can you see that this person likely deceived you, manipulated you, wasn’t fair to you, was selfish, etc.

I intentionally chose the example of a mother because it’s ultimately difficult to accept the truth in that relationship. Mothers should be excellent, and we should adore them, but sometimes even mothers aren’t… wonderful. Mothers are people like everyone else, but they were certainly just an example. You can put anyone in the place for analysis.

This serves to put the person who brought us into that bad state in the right place. Because if we think that a person is wrong, then we can finally question their words and actions towards us.

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5. Seeking professional help right from the beginning.

This serves to rely on someone’s knowledge and skills. On someone’s strength and determination. A professional should help you not stray into wrong beliefs but firmly hold you to beliefs that are good for you.

For instance, if you’re having a bad day and don’t know how to get through it, a professional should support you and provide you with tools for self-sustainment on difficult days. Then, if you don’t trust yourself, a professional can help you by telling you the truth. If you don’t love yourself, a professional can point out aspects of you that are endearing but which you are unable to see because of ingrained, false beliefs about yourself.

And finally, a professional can help you see the people who did this to you truthfully. If a professional tells you, for example, that your mother is narcissistic or that your father is unreasonably aggressive, it’s much more convincing (because it comes from a professional).

Man and woman in toxic relationship

Giving bad epithets to objects of our love is difficult, so a professional can do it through their expertise.

I suggest borrowing ego from a professional. Your ego is damaged or destroyed, so a professional can serve you by firmly holding, encouraging, and giving good suggestions, not letting you falter. They’ll lend you their ego.

This is for a professional to get you back on track with the help of the truth.

Strengthening the foundation: Strengthening Character

Repeat the things you’ve built continuously until they become your new beliefs.

This process we’ve mentioned above involves building and adding more building material to it. If you’ve found something you love about yourself, add something else. If you’ve seen through the person who brought you to this state, think about it until it becomes your new truth. Think about other accomplices as well. If you’ve believed in yourself about one thing, firmly believe in that and add new things to believe in yourself.

This period really serves to repeat our new beliefs and strengthen them.
If you say something to yourself enough times, it will become your new reality and truth.

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Man and woman in toxic relationship

The ground floor is what the internet traditionally recommends

Setting boundaries, practicing self-care, challenging negative beliefs, processing your emotions, focusing on personal growth, rebuilding trust, and celebrating progress.
I’ll write more about this later, but for now, you have this basic task ahead of you to do.

After you lay the foundation, strengthen it, and then build the ground floor, it can be said that your being is renewed and far stronger than ever. And finally, you can live with yourself and be safe.

Love you. Dee.

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