As the new year begins, it’s time to say goodbye to old, unhealthy behaviors, that have kept you stuck in toxic relationships and from living happy, authentic lives. Kicking Codependency is really about changing your relationship with yourself. It’s important that you replace your old ways of thinking and acting and implement more positive and healthy behaviors. Print out the list below and refer to it anytime you feel yourself reverting back to your old coping mechanisms.
- Build your self-esteem – Know that only you decide your worth. You can’t find it in other people, because they don’t have it. You determine your value by the way you treat yourself. Act like a person of value, even if it doesn’t feel authentic. The repeated action will become habitual and others will follow your lead until it does feel real.
- Learn how to communicate effectively – The only healthy way to communicate is by being direct. Get in the practice of saying what you want, stating your opinion and making decisions. Adopt the mindset that your needs and wants not only matter, but they are the most important thing in your universe. If you don’t speak up for you – who will? Don’t back down from conflict. Like all things this takes practice. The more you do it the easier it becomes.
- Stop listening to the Critical Parent Voice – That voice in your head that is always trying to sabotage you – tell it where to go. Interrupt it every time it tries to pull you down that road to pain. Don’t listen to it, don’t follow it’s dictates. The more you stand up to it the quieter it gets and the less frequently it shows up.
- Stop people pleasing – Your life is about you and finding your bliss, it’s not about pleasing other people or trying to get them to like you. When you find yourself trying to over-give stop yourself and ask why you’re doing it? If the honest answer is to get someone to like you – stop right there and reread #1.
- Cut out toxic people from your life – We absorb the energy around us. We become like the 5 people we spend the most time with. If your circle isn’t supportive, loving and kind – you need a new circle.
- Create and enforce your boundaries – This goes hand in hand with building your self-esteem. You can’t act like a person of value while letting people walk all over you at the same time. Persons of value have limits. They know where to draw their lines in the sand, they don’t hold on when they’ve been lied to, betrayed or manipulated – they walk. As a Codependent you’ve been conditioned to adapt to unhealthy atmospheres rather than to take action. Now it’s time to put your adult boots on and let them do what they were made to do.
- Get control of your emotions – Codependents can be very emotionally reactive when faced with conflict. When you find yourself in this situation don’t respond, give yourself 24 hours to settle your emotions, while keeping in mind that just because someone says something it doesn’t make it true, nor do you have to absorb the blame, shame or responsibility. Don’t allow your emotions to guide your behavior. When you’re obsessing reread #3.
- Always look for the humor in everything – The most emotionally healthy people laugh and find room to have fun every day. Stop looking for a reason to be offended. A few months ago, I posted an empowering quote on esteemology’s social media accounts. I got a reply from a reader that she was offended by the quote, that it didn’t land well with her. I replied that I am only responsible for my intention, which was to empower and that I wasn’t responsible for her past experiences and how things “landed” with her. Stop looking for what’s wrong and what might be offensive to you. Let things roll off your back and look for joy not reasons to be upset.
- Practice self-care always – My favorite word of 2017 has been autonomy. Learn how to take care of all of your own needs. Make taking care of you your top priority. Make sure that physically you are taking care of your body, eating properly and getting enough sleep. From a financial perspective learn how to manage the expenses living alone, how to get the education you desire, or apply for that job you want. Make sure that you have learned how to control your emotions so that they do not control you. Stop seeking validation from others and learn how to determine your own worth. From a spiritual perspective, meditate, spend time raising your emotional vibration, live from a place of positivity and gratitude.
- Change your focus and stop being other person focused – It’s time to become the star of your own life and to let go of the past. Start telling a new story, one of triumphs and goals, not one of abuse and victimization. Make this year a new chapter in your life, where it’s going to be all about you, your goals and your future. When you find yourself succumbing to the need to be liked and the need to fix and control the lives of others force yourself to take a step back and allow others to suffer the consequences of their own action. Learn to detach, and give yourself what you need and create the life you were meant to live.
Happy New Year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!