When you start to make positive changes and improve yourself, you expect your friends to be excited and happy for you. No one expects a close friendship to turn toxic, but unfortunately it happens. I can tell you first-hand that it is devastating when once close friendships break and burn for a time that should be exciting for you. Toxic friendships don’t always mean your best friend is actively sabotaging you Mean Girls style, they can happen when you’ve simply distanced yourself and chosen different paths. Read my 5 truths about personal growth and toxic friendships and see if something resonates with you.

Creating personal growth in your life won’t sit well with some friends.

If you are transforming your life with positive changes, be it gaining self-confidence, losing weight, perhaps starting a new career, you will lose friends. Period. People who are not comfortable with change will find it difficult to swallow their evolving life, perhaps because it reminds them that they are stuck in life, or perhaps they are not used to you standing up for themselves. Perhaps your entire friendship was based on the negative behaviors you kicked out. Self-improvement will expose friends who don’t care about your best interests. Be prepared to lose friends, to make it hurt a lot, and then get over it and feel happy. Losing friends may not seem like it, but it can be a blessing in disguise.

A toxic friend is not necessarily a bad person

The thing about toxic friends is that sometimes they don’t mean to be toxic at all and are generally pretty good people outside of your shaky friendship. Perhaps they are simply terrified of change and cannot understand their new perspective. Most toxic friends come in the form of people who don’t support your successes, talk behind your back, or judge your goals. I’m talking about the friends that leave you feeling drained, negative, or depressed about yourself every time you see them. Take a good look at your friendships and see who is trying to get you back into your bad habits, who interrupts you when you are sharing something you are proud of, who tells you that you are not a good friend. because you are not putting your full attention on them. Those are the kind of people you don’t need.

Ending the friendship doesn’t have to be dramatic.

I can look at my old group of friends with love and respect for the time we spend together, but at the same time I know that they are toxic to my improved self. I don’t spend my time gossiping, but I used to do it with them. I don’t like having superficial, superficial conversations all the time, but I used to do it with them. I don’t spend my time complaining about the present while I remember the past, but I used to do it with them. I chose to be positive, work towards the future rather than get stuck in the past and stop making fun of people because it made me feel better about myself, and unfortunately that caused some discomfort and distance in the friendship. People separate and choose different paths, and my path simply didn’t have room for their negative energy. I am not saying to eliminate friends who disagree with you all the time or who have different goals than you, I am saying that it is important to have friends who are authentic. Ending a friendship doesn’t have to be a big, dramatic fight. You could try talking to them about how you feel if you are interested in saving the friendship; they may not realize how they are affecting you and may change their attitude. If that’s not the case, you have two options: you can either say outright that you need some space, or slowly stop hanging out with them. Leaving it on a good note leaves room for reconnection if you think they can grow in the future.

Leaving toxic friends will free up energy and time for supportive relationships.

Here’s the hard part: even though they don’t claim to be toxic, and they’re generally good people, they’re still toxic and you have to move on. Leaving a friendship is just as difficult as leaving a romantic relationship, especially if you still love and respect that friend. I had to and it bothered me most of the year. I asked myself the same things over and over again “why don’t my best friends understand me, why are they so caught up in trivial and negative things”? I lost sleep about it, I cried about it, I screamed about it, but in the end, I came to understand that it was for the best. Now, I only spend my time with people who celebrate me, support me and love me unconditionally, and whom I celebrate, support and love. It is an incredible feeling to be surrounded by people who I know only want the best for me. I am happier, more confident, more fulfilled, more inspired! Great things come from dropping toxic friends.

Never hide your positive progress because a friend is not happy for you.

Toxic friends have their own underlying issues that cause them to act in a way that is unsympathetic to you – don’t take it personally. It is an indicator that they are not happy with themselves or with their lives, so it is not you, it is them. Just because people aren’t happy with your incredible progress doesn’t mean you should hide it. Shine like a diamond, you worked hard to manifest a change in your life, don’t let some skeptics hinder your success. Surround yourself with friends who are proud of you and push you to do better. Evaluate your circle and just keep the awesome people around. Any friend who doesn’t leave you feeling encouraged, supported, and happy doesn’t need to be a friend, and life is too short to associate with people who don’t appreciate the beautiful soul that you are. You just have to know that you are not the only person who has been through this. You may feel lonely now, but soon you will find people who will appreciate who you are and who you are trying to be, and you will not feel forced or alone. Always follow your intuition, if someone constantly depresses you, it may be time to reconsider the friendship.

Have you had any run-ins with personal growth and toxic friendships? Let me know in the comments below!

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