Good friendships are vital for well-being, giving you a reliable support network in times of distress and helping you to feel known and understood.
Many successful manifestation stories note the role of reliable friends when working with the Law of Attraction in particular, as loved ones provide accountability and offer support as you journey towards your goal.
However, it’s important to know when a friendship has become toxic, sapping your energy and undermining your self-esteem.
Here are the eight key signs of a problematic friendship. Sometimes, you may be able to improve and restore it through honest conversation, but at other times you may need to walk away for good.
1. Putting You Down
You should feel like your friend’s equal, giving and receiving positive feedback that makes you both feel good. However, a toxic friend will find ways to make you feel like you’re less than they are.
For example, they might draw attention to your insecurities and reinforce them as true, or they might discourage you from trying to achieve your dreams (telling you that they’re not realistic for someone like you).
Everyone makes mistakes in relationships, and good friends can apologize for their part in such arguments or other clashes.
In contrast, toxic friendships other involve one person who won’t own their mistakes—this person will blame you for everything instead, and apologies will be in short supply. You will be told that everything is your fault and that it’s you who needs to change or feel bad about a difficult interaction.
. Attempts to Control
Controlling behaviors can be less obvious in a toxic friendship than they are in a romantic relationship, but they can be just as damaging.
The friend might always insist on being in charge of what you do or where you go, they might try to influence your life choices, or they could attempt to exert influence over how you look and dress.
Loving friends empower you to make your own choices, and may give feedback but will always respect your autonomy.
On a similar note, some controlling friends may actively try to stop you from making new friends, or even attempt to stand in the way of you finding a partner. This is because a toxic friend often wants to claim all of your time and energy, and hates the idea of you turning your attention elsewhere at any times.
Sometimes, you may not even notice this isolating influence until suddenly you realize that other friends—or even family—have drifted away.
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