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  • Lynn Catalano

Ways to Cope with Toxic Family


Toxic relationships cause you immense stress and it affects your physical, mental, and emotional health. Holidays and special occasions often exacerbate stress. People who suffer from narcissistic personality disorder seem to enjoy ruining holidays by demanding attention, creating drama, and throwing tantrums if they don’t get their way. See my previous blog post about their ruin of holidays here.


It's time to explore ways you can protect yourself. Do something for yourself after surviving Thanksgiving and before your next major holiday. If you’ve come to the conclusion that enough is enough. If you’ve left your family holiday gathering thinking “I can’t do this again.” Then it’s time. It’s time for you to prioritize yourself. I’m a survivor of narcissistic abuse and I coach people who’ve suffered similarly. If 1:1 coaching isn’t for you, I have a group starting soon. Make 2024 your year.


5 things you can do for you


1. Boundaries

It’s important to set boundaries and limitations. Usually, the best way to protect your boundaries is by going no-contact. This isn’t easy when you are dealing with these people in a specific situation. You will need to proactively set time limits, giving these people specific blocks when you are available. It’s recommended to compromise with your narcissist to mitigate drama, but you absolutely cannot accept any kind of physical or emotional abuse from them. This is non-negotiable.


2. Don’t take it personally

When you choose to not take anything personally, rather than feel hurt or angry you become more empowered. You are being proactive rather than a victim of another person’s narcissism. If you make a habit to not take things personally, anger, jealousy, envy and even sadness will disappear as a result. You’ll gain empathy, compassion, and respect. These are all great transformational characteristics.


3. Gratitude

It’s so important to focus on what’s actually important and your people. Toxic relationships make you question everything, including your own sanity. Take time to express your gratitude whether through meditation, journaling, or prayer.


4. Self-Care

It’s critical for you to practice self-care. The World Health Organization (WHO) defines self-care as “the ability of individuals, families, and communities to promote health, prevent disease, maintain health, and to cope with illness and disability with or without the support of a healthcare provider.” This means paying attention to you, keeping yourself healthy to the best of your ability.


Examples of Self-Care Activities:

  • Meditation or prayer

  • Sitting in sunlight

  • Exercising

  • Eating right

  • Getting a massage

  • Laughing with friends

  • Reading a book

  • Having a hobby

  • Even just putting on clean clothes


5. Forgiveness

Forgiveness is for you, not them. It’s essential you find your peace of mind. This is true self-care for you. Forgiveness is about bringing you a sense of peace, releasing your grudges, and letting go of bitterness. This doesn’t mean reconciling or returning to your former relationship. Move on and let go.


Psychology Today stresses, forgiveness is vitally important for the mental health of those who have been victimized. It propels people forward rather than keeping them emotionally engaged in an injustice or trauma.”


Forgiveness also equals freedom. Once you allow yourself to release your anger, resentment, and rage, you’re finally and happily free.


If you haven’t made any changes, if you’re still in that toxic relationship, questioning yourself, 2024 is your year. Change is uncomfortable. It’s much easier to stay where you are. But change comes from uncomfortable places.


Don’t step into another new year in this toxic situation. Often, we stay in these cycles of abuse because we don’t believe we deserve something better.


You do deserve better. Make 2024 your year.


I have a group starting soon. I have a limited number of seats available for serious people who want to be able to recover from this and never be in this situation again. Get on the waiting list. This is your chance. Don’t wait another day. Sign up here: https://www.lynncatalano.com/group-registration


This is why it’s so important to talk to someone after you’ve suffered this type of abuse. But not just anyone. You need to find someone who’s familiar with narcissistic personality disorder. You see, I didn’t get here by accident. I didn't set out to become a narcissistic abuse recovery coach. But after I’d suffered this kind of abuse, I realized that my story and my experience could help so many people who’ve suffered similarly. When someone tells me about their struggles and their story, I’m not just understanding. I really get it. I’ve been there. I’ve felt those same emotions, that same rage, and loss.


I can help you.


Don’t suffer in silence from narcissistic abuse, let’s talk.


Click here to book a free session with me. Don’t wait another day.


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