Are your toxic relationships making you sick? – Mindset Monday

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“Emotions are simply a form of energy that runs through your body like an electrical current.”

We’ve all been there: stress, worry, anxiety. But did you know that these things are affecting you internally as well as externally?

That’s right. It’s not just affecting your concentration or your mood, it’s affecting your physical being. That fight you had with your spouse or your kids last week was more than just a sad night; it caused a sort of trauma within your body too. Your emotional feelings and negative thoughts trigger inflammation and if not attended to, this is the perfect playground for all kinds of illness and disease.

Emotions and Inflammation

Inflammation is part of your body’s immune response trying to fight off foreign invaders. It’s the body’s healthy process of coming to aid the body if it’s injured, in usual circumstances.

With emotions, inflammation can come into play. When you’re stressed or upset, adrenalin and cortisol are released. Adrenaline is a hormone that is created by the adrenal glands. This hormone increases your breathing, blood circulation and increases your heart rate to give you more energy.

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Cortisol is also a type of hormone. It is also secreted by the adrenal glands and controls your glucose metabolism, insulin release for blood sugar maintenance, immune function and inflammatory response. When you’re stressed, your body goes into its “fight-or-flight” mode. Cortisol prepares the body for “fight-or-flight” by increasing the body’s glucose, which supplies the muscles with an immediate source of energy. Cortisol inhibits insulin production to prevent glucose from being stored and also narrows the arteries.

When adrenaline and cortisol are released, they suppress your immune system and impair digestion by using up all vital minerals and vitamins that your body needs. It also causes pain and stiffness.  

When cortisol is released but not allowed to serve its function with regulating inflammation, inflammation can get out of control. Prolonged stress hinders the effectiveness of cortisol to regulate the inflammatory response.

Studies have shown that negative emotions actually weaken your body, while positive emotions strengthen your body.

That is why it’s so important to be aware of your thought patterns, the people you surround yourself with and how you handle stress.

Causes of Stress

There are so many different causes of stress. It can range from anxiety and guilt to anticipation for an upcoming test or review at work or the guy who cut you off on the freeway.

Maybe you’re overwhelmed with trying to plan your daughter’s birthday party while working full-time and running a household. There are so many different things that can cause someone to be stressed or emotional. Trust me when I say – I GET IT.

In the end, it all depends on how you handle things.

A main trigger of stress is something that not all of us think about: Toxic relationships or being around toxic people in general.

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Does your spouse seem angry every second of the day? Does your best friend blame you for her actions or decisions? If so, you might have a relationship with a toxic person.

Toxic relationships, whether lover, friend or co-worker, are harmful no matter how you try to perceive them. When you constantly have someone picking arguments or putting you down, you start to feel “down”, depressed, not worthy. When you have these feelings, you may begin to wonder, “Am I not good enough?” or “What did I do wrong?”.

Sustained stress like this leads to elevated cortisol levels and also reduces serotonin (the feel good hormone) in the brain. As I said before, when the cortisol hormones are not able to do their job fully (which is to reduce inflammation), your immune system is not working 100% and, therefore, you’re more susceptible to illness and disease because of, you guessed it, inflammation.

Bad relationships are stressful! And stress causes problems in your body that you don’t need or want. And while it may be uncomfortable to remove these people or experiences from your life, I want to encourage you to take a step back and think about how you want to feel each day.

Remember, we are the sum of the 5 people we spend the most time with. Chances are, if your immediate circle is toxic, there is a part of you that’s absorbing that negative energy too.

But you can change that!

Leave Relationships That Don’t Serve You

Sometimes we have to make hard decisions and decide whether or not it’s best to leave a relationship. If a relationship is one that doesn’t serve you or makes you constantly unhappy, then yes, it might be time for you to end that relationship. It’s probably for the best.

Sometimes a relationship can bring more hurt than love, more anger than happiness. And in that case, it’s time to walk away.

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1. Cultivate your intuition and become aware of your life as it is at this moment. By going inward, you’re able to find that knowingness, that “feeling” that something is not right for you or it is not serving you any longer. The first step in any situation is to admit and to acknowledge what it is that is no longer serving you. Meditation is a great tool to begin the process of realization and getting honest with your higher self.

2. Accept the fact that you’re exiting the relationship. Once you have made the decision to make your exit, your mind might flood with thoughts and emotions. But don’t let those thoughts or emotions hinder your decision. Remember why it is that you’re leaving. Be kind to yourself and the other person in the process. Give thanks for the experience. There are no accidents.

3. Honor the part of your life that you’re letting go. It’s hard to let large parts of your life just walk out the door and it’s hard to just sit back and watch it be done – and there is nothing wrong with feeling this way. If you need to, take the time to honor this part of your life. Find a way to embrace closure.

4. Trust that things will get better. Sometimes it’s hard for us to see the light at the end of the tunnel and we have all been there more than once. But once you let go of this toxic part of your life, just remember to be patient. The more patient you are, the more wonderful that special “someone” or “something” will be when it comes into your life.

Have More Confidence

Life has it’s ups and downs, but that’s part of the journey! If you’ve just let go of a toxic relationship, it can be hard to find your confidence again and move forward.

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1. Be positive. Stay away from the negativity. It will only bring you down. Put some positive enthusiasm into your interactions and your routine; be excited to start your next project. Be happy. Try to stop focusing on the problems in your life and start thinking about the good instead. Start focusing on solutions and positive changes rather than “what if”.

2. Know your strengths. And your weaknesses. Take a look at where and who you are. What you’ve already achieved. What you would like to achieve. What you might need to work on. And get to work! Take a few minutes to celebrate and enjoy your successes and your strengths. You’re an amazing human being and you deserve to live an abundant life.

3. Change your body language. A simple smile, eye contact or a change in your posture are easy solutions to get you started. Something as simple as pulling your shoulders back gives the image that you’re a confident person, and in time, you will start believing and trusting that you are a confident person. When you’re talking with someone, keep eye contact. This also shows confidence.

4. Don’t accept failure. We all fail. We all make mistakes. It’s how we react to our mistakes and failures as to whether we will succeed next time. If you start bashing yourself and telling yourself that you’re a failure, or that you’re not good at anything, pretty soon you’ll start believing it. At Fitlife we like to say, Fail Forward. Because with each failure there is a lesson the path to success becomes that much closer.

Be Positive

It’s understandable that sometimes we lose hope. We’re human. Sometimes we feel like we’re drowning and can’t reach the surface, but there are ways to get your positivity back and get back to being the incredible person that I know you are.

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1. Be grateful and thankful. Even at your darkest time, there is so much that is going right. Each day, write down the good things and the good people in your life. Feel the joy and happiness that those things bring you. Then, remember it and take it with you.

2. Remember that time heals. You won’t be in your situation forever. It’s only temporary and it WILL go away.

3. There are people who care about you. When you’re surrounded by toxic, self-centered people, it’s often hard to remember the ones who have been there for you all along. Let go of the complainers, the nay-sayers, the Negative Nancy’s and focus on the people who love and care about you. The people who are there for you at your darkest hour are the ones you need to keep around.

Get To Know Yourself On A Deeper Level

Knowing yourself at your core is important. Knowing who you truly are inside gives us meaning, purpose and even joy in our life. Being able to figure out who you are opens a door to unlimited possibilities and a life that is fulfilling.

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1. Understand and honor your values. Understand what it is that matters most to you at your deepest level. What are you personal values? What are your standards? Your priorities and beliefs? Make a list of things that you value such as communication, conflict-resolution, influencing; something that when asked, you cannot be persuaded to change. These are your core values.

2. Know what makes you passionate. What is it that gets you excited or that demands your full undivided attention? Are you passionate about reading or writing? Passionate about art or history? Find something that you couldn’t live without for a second, something that gives you joy. THIS is your passion zone.

3. Set goals. We all want something out of life, but we may not know exactly how to get there. Set goals. When you set goals, you have stepping stones that will lead you to the path of your biggest goal. You need to have a direction, a destination to move towards. Make a clear path. Clarity leads to action.

4. Know your limits. Some people are emotionally strong and can handle a lot. If you can’t handle a lot, that’s okay! Knowing what and where your limits are helps you grow as a person. It helps you to understand what skills or activities you’re just not ready for or which ones you’re perfect for in this moment.

Life is a beautiful journey. It’s full of trials and tribulations. Sorrow and joy. How we set our mind and decide how to handle life can make all the difference.

If you stress and get upset about the little things, those little things will turn into big things and those big things will become mountains. Instead, focus on the good things in life, be optimistic and seek opportunities. A bad situation doesn’t last forever, but how you react to the situation, well… that’s what makes all the difference.

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To learn more about the powers of turmeric and reducing inflammation, check out this Saturday Strategy.

It’s not too late to sign up for the #WITT30 Challenge. Lots of info and cool prizes to giveaway! If you haven’t jumped in there yet, now is the perfect time!

Always remember, we’re in this together!

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Drew Canole

Drew Canole

CEO at Fitlife.tv
Drew Canole is a rockstar in the world of fitness, nutrition and mindset, with a huge heart for others and doing his part to transform the world, one person at a time.

As the founder and CEO of Fitlife.TV, he is committed to sharing educational, inspirational and entertaining videos and articles about health, fitness, healing and longevity. He is also a best selling author and the founder of Organifi, an organic, incredibly delicious greens powder, chock-full of superfoods to make juicing easy no matter your busy schedule.
Drew Canole

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