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Friends: Are They a Positive or Poisonous Part of Your Life?

Friends: Are they a Positive or Poisonous Part of your Life?

Balance and well-being are integral components of a healthy lifestyle.  They are things that we should strive for and many of us do, but sometimes we fall short of our goals.  At times, we may aim too high or set goals that are too large for us to meet. Other times we simply don’t try at all.

More often than many of us care to admit, there are outside influences that can interfere with us achieving balance and harmony in our lives. A wise man named John Donne once said, “No man is an island.” We are social creatures by nature, and we cannot make it through this life alone without the support of others.  In that same thread of thought, however, sometimes the support we receive isn’t the healthy kind of support we’re looking for.

We open ourselves up to our closest friends and often trust them with our deepest thoughts and emotions. This established bond, tends to make us more vulnerable to the people we call friends.  We’re more open to the thoughts and opinions of our friends and that makes it easier for them to manipulate us, whether it’s intentional or not.

Sometimes, friends who discover that you’re striving to improve yourself may “jokingly” take jabs at you for your “strange” decision.  Perhaps you’ve sworn off certain kinds of food or you’ve dropped your weekly game of darts and beer in exchange for some much needed gym time. Friends can take it as a personal slight when you turn more attention onto yourself and may feel that it’s necessary to set you straight.  Some do it in a joking fashion, others may even share their feelings about how they don’t like your new changes.  Worst of all are the toxic friends who criticize your decision to change your life for the better.

Regardless of the circumstances, you have to stand your ground.

Whatever the nature of the relationship and regardless of how long you have been friends, no relationship is more valuable than your own health.  When relationships with dysfunctional people begin to affect your health, then it’s a good idea to consider ending a friendship for your own well-being.

If you’re already considering incorporating positive changes into your current lifestyle, then you understand the negative effect that your old lifestyle has.  If you have toxic friends that aren’t supportive, then it may be time to consider who your real friends are and if those friends are worth keeping.