Tuesday, March 27, 2012



Are all the
worth keeping?
           Renee Singh*

People in our lives can be can be a great source of comfort but also sometimes they can be a significant cause of stress.

Stress relief is very important for our physical and emotional well being. We understand this and we all realize the value of a good relationship.

Having a happy relationship is a great stress reliever, conversely a conflicted relationship can bring a great deal of stress.

Relationship research shows that there is a very important impact that relationships have on our health, well being and stress levels.

Relationships conflict can negatively affect your health in several ways.

Research has also shown us that stable negative social exchanges are significantly
associated with lower self rated health, greater functional limitations and a higher number of health conditions.

Impact on immunity
Stress dampens the immune system. Ongoing stress can really take a toll on your health and needs immediate attention.
Family conflict
This is not uncommon. The most important relationships in our lives are within our family and are perhaps the greatest cause of our major stress.

I feel this not basically due to a lack of love but due to a lack of comfort in dealing with conflict among family members, whether it is open conflict over the dinner table or a one to one argument.

Ambivalent friendships
These are relationships where interactions are sometimes negative and hostile and sometimes positive and supportive.

These have clear negative impact on health, affect blood pressure, contribute to heart disease and many other co-related conditions.

It is in your best interest to minimize and eliminate negative relationships in your life.

Make a plan to minimize stress of ambivalent relationships by dealing with stress in these two steps.

Step One

Make a list of all the friendships in your life. Include all the people you can think of as friends, whether you meet them sometimes or regularly. Include your romantic partners whether they are in
your life now or they were there earlier or may be likely to come back.

Step two
Circle the name of friends or people in your life who are positive, those who support you when you are down and share your joy when good things happen to you. For others, evaluate your friendships and other relationships genuinely to see if they are beneficial to you or detrimental.

Ask yourself?
·    Is this relationship worth the work you putting into it?
·    Am I holding on to the relationship because of habit?
·    Would I want to be with this person if we met today?

·    Does the person make me feel good about myself?
·    Am I uncomfortable with the person?
·    Do I like who I am when I am with that person?
·    Do we bring out the best in each other?
·    How deeply can I trust this person?
·    Do we have common interests?
·    Am I receiving as much as I am giving to this relationship?
·    Does this relationship enrich my life?

Once you answer these questions if gives you a clearer picture of whether the relationship is positive or negative for you.

Check yourself and learn to let go?


Our habitual thought patterns shape what we get angry about.

Change your thoughts in a way to attack negative thoughts to change them to positive.


At some point accept that some relationships stress you continually. Recognize these people and keep them at a safe distance. Stay on with your healthy relationships.
(*Singh is a Chandigarh based Psychotherapist)
Source: The Tribune 26th March, 2012.

No comments: