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Navigating Emotional Twisters: Practical Tips for Tricky Relationships

two girls standing on a balcony

Hi Everyone!

In this blog post we're diving into a topic we've all encountered at some point: tricky relationships and their negative impact. These are the connections that can leave us feeling confused, ticked off, or emotionally drained.

We'll start by exploring how these relationships impact your mindset, then I'll share some tips for preventing the drain and managing some of the challenging feelings that come with the tricky relationship territory.

Tricky Relationships’ Impact on Mindset

Picture this: you're in a great mood, and then someone you have a tricky relationship with shows up, creating chaos, kicking up dust, spewing negativity, or exhibiting “look at me” behavior. What was once a great mood suddenly shifts, leaving you feeling heavy and prickly. Sound familiar?

These tricky relationships can significantly affect your mindset. Recognizing the signs can help you mitigate their impact. Here are some ways to look out for:

1. Negative Emotions: Tricky relationships often involve frustration, anger, sadness, or disappointment, creating a negative impact that affects your overall mood.

2. Stress and Anxiety: The complexities and constant tension can lead to heightened levels of stress and anxiety, impacting your mental well-being.

3. Self-Doubt: Criticism or judgment in these relationships can lower your self-esteem, leading to self-doubt.

4. Draining Energy: Constantly managing the relationship dynamics can be emotionally and mentally exhausting, leaving you drained and fatigued. (Side note: which leaves you susceptible to other forms of negativity, such as your inner critic’s yammering.)

5. Distorted Perspectives: Tricky relationships can distort your perspectives, causing you to view the world through a negative lens.

6. Impact on Decision-Making: The emotional drain of a tricky relationship can impair your ability to make clear and rational decisions, leading to impulsive choices. Or leading to decisions that aren’t aligned with you at all.

7. People-pleasing and Peacekeeping: It’s not at all uncommon to say “yes when you need and want to say “no.”

What impact has a tricky relationship had on you?

Remembering that when you recognize the impact, you’re able to develop ways to mitigate that impact and preserve your mental wellbeing.

Practical Tips for Mitigation

Now, let's dive into some practical tips for dealing with the draining dynamics of tricky relationships. Here are some strategies to experiment with:

Tip 1: Set Boundaries

Setting boundaries is essential to protecting your well-being. Know your limits and communicate them clearly. At the end of the day, we teach people how to treat us based on what we will and won’t allow.

Tip 2: Shift Your Perspective

Try taking a 10,000 foot of that person and their behaviors. What do you notice that maybe you didn’t notice before? Maybe you see just how insecure they are or how they’re dealing with some major self-doubt. Their behavior is usually a reflection of their own internal struggles, and not a personal attack on you. (Even though it may sometimes feel really personal.)

Tip 3: Prioritize Self-Care

Make self-care a priority to help manage stress and recharge your energy. Do things that make you feel good. Because when you feel good, and your battery is fully charged you’re less susceptible to the negativity a tricky relationship brings with it.

Tip 4: Communicate Honestly

Express your feelings honestly and respectfully. Clear communication can lead to healthier and more authentic relationships. And something important to note, you’re only responsible for the content of that message and how it’s delivered, not how it’s received.

Important note: Sometimes, despite our best efforts to manage a tricky relationship, it can still cause harm to our well-being. In such cases, it might be necessary to end the relationship. Prioritizing your mental and emotional health is crucial, and removing yourself from a harmful dynamic is an important step towards healing and regaining your peace.

Your Turn

Now, I want to hear from all of you. What's your go-to strategy for dealing with a tricky relationship? Share your tips and experiences!


Navigating tricky relationships can be challenging, but with the right tools and mindset, you can handle them more effectively. Just know one thing - you're not alone. Let's continue to support each other and share our strategies for navigating these emotional twisters. I’m here and I’m listening.


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