Today, codependence has a much broader meaning, where one loves another individual and loses oneself along the line in an effort to remain fused. The mindset of codependence says, "Let us do all things together and be everything for ourselves to make sure we will never end up alone. These are high stakes, aren't they?

How can one quit being codependent, especially in cases that involve family members, close friends or colleagues? It is quite easy to quit being codependent, but it equally involves both time and commitment. It all boils down to this belief that we are always given a choice in our own behavior in every moment. There a number of important steps one can take to end codependency.

How to Stop Being Codependent: Follow 3 Easy Steps to Fix Your Codependence

Step 1: Determine If You Are Really Codependent

Before you ask, "How to stop being codependent?", you need to look at the list of signs below to enable you determine if you are codependent. You don't need all these signs to be codependent. Moreover, certain degrees of codependence severity exist. If not treated, codependency becomes worse with time, but with the right help, you can get better and become more effective in both work and relationships. Below are some of the most common signs:

  • Keeping quiet to avert arguments

  • Always worried about what others think of you

  • If you once lived with a person within drug or alcohol addiction issues

  • If you ever lived with a person that either belittles or hits you

  • If you value other people's opinions above yours

  • If you feel rejected when your partner spends time with friends

  • If you doubt your ability to achieve your goals

  • If you are not comfortable expressing your real feelings to other people

  • If you feel like you are a bad person after a mistake

  • If you have problems taking gifts or compliments

  • If you think people around you would be affected if you stop making adequate efforts

  • If you always wish someone could assist you do some things

  • If you are confused about who you are and where your life is going

  • If you have problems saying no when someone asked you for help

  • If you have problems asking for help

Step 2: Focus On Yourself

Paying attention on another person is a big problem for codependents. It is not easy to let go. Turning this around to pay attention to yourself does not make you selfish; as a matter of fact, it is respecting other people's boundaries and autonomy. Below are some realistic steps to follow:

  • When in the company of others, make sure you don't watch other people.

  • Don't worry too much about anybody. Imagine the person surrounded by the power of God. Show them some love.

  • Avoid judging others if you don't want others to judge you.

  • Do not have other people's expectations; rather, meet your own expectations.

  • You are not responsible for someone's behavior. Other people are responsible for their behavior, while you are responsible for yours.

  • Write down your feelings in one journal. Read them to a therapist or someone very close to you.

  • Practice some spirituality and mediation.

  • Follow your own interests and try having fun while doing it.

  • Don't forget you can't change other people. Only a person has the power to change himself/herself.

  • Take some time out. If you are beginning to react anyone or are involved in an argument, it is a great idea to stay away and take time to think over some things. One good idea is to write it in your journal.

  • Write down positive things about your life in your journal daily. Search for the things you did very well like most about yourself, and put them down.

  • Take the labels off. You can sometimes make assumptions and expectations about someone close to you which you won't make of any of your friends. Ask yourself some questions about the way you would treat another person if the person wasn't your parent or partner.

Step 3: Seek Help

For how to stop being codependent, you can look for people who will help your inward growth. There are a lot of them out there. You already have some friends who make you feel good, friends who you know are wise, or who make you feel you are a good person on the inside. Pay attention to such people. Remove negative people who drain you emotionally. The fact is that they must find others to lean on and complain to, or perhaps help them decide it is high time they took a look at themselves. Whichever way, taking care of such people is never your responsibility.

If you have formed the habit of caring for others and doing for other adults what they ought to be doing for themselves, you may feel wrong or guilty about channeling all your energy and time to the people you feel you like, rather than the people who make you feel the really need you. Avoid falling into such trap. You can never help anyone by supporting and paying attention to behaviors that are unattractive. If anyone needs some help, help them find professional help and get out of their lives.

Make sure you surround yourself with those who can provide you with the things you need the most. Practice choosing what is good for you, and you will find yourself running into such people all the time.

Don't be reluctant about reaching out to those you think are helpful, which includes counselors, therapists, community leaders, clergies, teachers, or other professionals you never thought of approaching.

NB: There are very few people who can change their lives in a vacuum. Codependency works best when one is isolated. Find the right support you need to experience the inward transformation by reaching out.

Following these three steps painstakingly will help you experience a significant transformation in the quality of life you live and help you learn how to stop being codependent.


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