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How Can I Maintain Healthy Relationships Despite Unhealthy Dynamics?

Maintaining healthy relationships is one of the staples of recovery. During treatment, you learned the differences between healthy and unhealthy relationships. Unfortunately, just because you are on a path of self-discovery does not mean that others will be changing alongside you. This concept can be challenging if you’re excited about recovery and all the things you’ve learned.

While you were in treatment, learning about yourself became a priority every day. Now that you are on a journey of recovery, it can feel like you are alone. Most likely, unhealthy people still exist in your life, and it may be hard to figure out where they fit. Yet, there are many healthy coping skills you can use when in relationships with unhealthy people. Meanwhile, at The Guest House, we can help you develop these skills and learn new ways to overcome unhealthy dynamics in your relationships.

Use Communication Skills to Establish Healthy Relationships

A common assumption is that if you want to have better relationships, you need to improve your communication skills. While this improvement will help establish a solid foundation, it is important to realize that your communication style will not solve all relationship problems. Healthy relationships depend on solid communication, not just for you but for the others who are involved.

What exactly is healthy communication? On the surface, communication is the art of using words; however, communication can involve a lot more than speaking. For example, body language, utilizing emojis, or your tone of voice can put meaning behind your words.

First of all, it is important to recognize how you are communicating your wants and needs. You may also want to determine how others are communicating theirs and whether your needs are compatible. Several positive ways to establish healthy relationships through communication include:

  • Avoiding personalizing the issues. Don’t take everything personally regarding how things can be resolved and do not make the issues directly about you.
  • Practicing active listening. It sounds simple, but make sure you really listen to what the other person is communicating. This means putting down your devices and eliminating all distractions. Make the other person a priority in communication, which is essential for healthy relationships.
  • Being present in the moment. Show other people that they are cared for by being present in the moment.
  • Conveying kindness. When you make an effort to show kindness in all of your relationships, this will promote the best outcome. You do not have to agree with everyone, but it is important to show others kindness.
  • Showing acceptance. Unhealthy relationships stay unhealthy due to a lack of acceptance. Not everyone will agree with everything, but all people can accept others, no matter the situation.

Know That Healthy Relationships Have Boundaries

Part of your recovery is exploring self-awareness. In doing so, you may recognize that you tend to be a people-pleaser. During recovery, you may need to recognize that you have to maintain your boundaries to have healthy relationships. To have your boundaries respected, you have to respect others and their boundaries as well.

Boundaries are the parameters of what you allow into your recovery and what you want to keep out. Healthy relationships exist within healthy boundaries.

Sometimes you will encounter a person who does not understand healthy boundaries. In those cases, your job is to accept that you cannot change them. Your battle is sticking to your boundaries so that you can have healthy relationships. If this is something you find yourself struggling with, The Guest House has qualified therapists who can assist through individual therapy sessions.

Recognize Your Worth

One of the most important steps during recovery is learning to recognize your worth. Sometimes it can be difficult to fathom that you are worthy of healthy relationships. This is the time to reflect on how you have grown in recovery. When you struggle to foster a sense of self-worth, this shows up in other areas of life. For example, it may show up in relationships where people put pressure on you to change.

You may blame yourself for the unhealthy relationship or be quick to point out all of your bad choices in life. Additionally, your standards can become low, which further decreases your self-esteem. However, keep in mind that your worth is not dependent on other people or relationships. You did the work and you are worth it just because you are you.

Connect to Healthy Relationships

Now that you are recognizing patterns in your relationships, understanding how to foster healthy relationships is key to maintaining your recovery. The struggle to maintain relationships with people who are not in recovery or making changes is real. Not everyone will be on the same path as you are. Sometimes you have to distance yourself to maintain your peace.

This does not mean you have to completely cut people off or disown them. You are free to have relationships on your terms. Several healthy ways to connect are as follows:

  • Put yourself first. Recognize that you need to feel good about the situation and if you do not, you owe no explanation.
  • Ask for support.
  • Protect your health by practicing self-care.
  • Distance yourself from negativity.

Recognize that you have the power to change yourself and how you handle unhealthy relationships. By doing this, you strengthen your self-esteem and realize that you are in control of how you respond. The choice is yours in how you deal with unhealthy relationships. However, there is even more hope when you enlist compassionate support from The Guest House.

When you are aware that you have an unhealthy relationship, it can be hard to change this pattern. In recovery, you tend to notice the things that you want in life and the things that you do not. Perhaps you feel obligated to be there for a person or feel like you owe them. Whatever the case is, The Guest House is here to support you through this situation. We understand that family dynamics can be difficult. If you or someone you know is struggling, please do not hesitate to give us a call. We are here to serve you and will try to be of assistance no matter what. Call us at (855) 483-7800 today.