Are You Codependent?
Codependency is a prevalent issue in romantic and familial relationships. People often don't recognize it within themselves, yet it can cause many mental health problems. Depending on the lives and happiness of others, to fill your need for joy means lowering your self-esteem. It also leads to struggles in all aspects of your life. When you allow someone else to have so much control over how you feel or behave, it impacts how you view yourself, how you believe others view you, and eventually how you function.
What is Codependency?
Codependency is an obsessive preoccupation with the lives, feelings, and problems of others. You may find yourself being reliant on a partner for fulfillment. This is not just unhealthy but highly dysfunctional. It also tends to happen without notice. You won't wake up one day and find yourself feeling a certain way because of someone else. It happens gradually over time while in a bad relationship or situation. This codependency can even happen with your boss or a coworker.
When your happiness is dependent on someone else's actions or mood, you are letting your self-esteem and confidence slip away. Sadly, this could start in childhood from one's relationship with their parents. Even as a child, you may gain happiness from pleasing your parents, or when they are in a good mood, you thrive. Yet, that behavior can turn into a pattern that continues into adulthood, relationships, and even friendships. You might find yourself needing approval from others to feel good about yourself. You may also feel down or depressed when someone else is upset.
Codependency deletes individuality and sometimes even your emotional stability. If someone in your life displays harmful behavior and you are codependent on them, it can poorly impact you. Signs of codependency can be clinginess, jealousy, controlling behavior, or resentment. This may seem intense, but it isn't permanent. You can work through such struggles and redevelop your sense of self.
Signs of Codependency
Codependency can be brutal and intense. It can genuinely halt your personal growth and individuality. Knowing the signs of codependency can help you determine if you need to make some changes. If you find yourself relating to the following, you may be codependent. Signs that someone is codependent include:
Needing approval from others
Confidence based on others
Committing to more than you can handle for someone else's sake
Apologizing for others' mistakes
Ignoring your wants or needs
Obsessive concern for someone else's behaviors
Basing your mood on others
Feeling guilt about self-care
Lacking insight into others' imperfections
An overwhelming fear of abandonment
How to Fight Codependency
Overcoming codependency requires hard work. It would be best if you learned how to retrain your mind. You have probably lived in this cycle for a long time, so it will take time to undo that damage. Being self-reliant and allowing your confidence to return and be based on how you see yourself, your actions, and your emotions takes practice and help.
Acknowledging your reality can help you take the next step. Admitting you are codependent and understanding what it means can help you begin to address the cause. It is best to do this with a licensed therapist who can guide you down the right path. Working on the cause behind codependency can allow you to break that cycle that may have repeated itself many times over. Releasing control is another way to fight codependency. Understanding that you cannot fix someone else's problems allows you a sense of freedom. From there, you can feel how you feel without the impact of someone else. Your worry for someone else does not need to control you. And you do not need to control them.
Working on your self-esteem may be one of the most challenging aspects of releasing codependency. Seeing yourself through your own eyes can feel impossible when you've based your self-view on others for so long. Making a list of what you like about yourself is an excellent place to start. Do things you enjoy. When you are codependent, it is easy to follow the leader. But, taking on activities and hobbies that you enjoy offers fulfillment. When you are happy with your life, you feel better about yourself.
Go to therapy. Therapy is the ultimate self-care. The act of signing up for therapy and getting treatment for any underlying mental illness like anxiety or depression that is linked to codependency is already a massive step in the right direction. Asking for help doesn't mean you've failed, but you respect and admire yourself for doing what you need to do to be your best.
Codependency may not be a mental illness, but it can easily lead to anxiety and depression without treatment and attention. When your impression of yourself is defined by someone else's life, actions, words, or emotions, you lose individuality and self-worth. Without that, you can become depressed and anxious. You may worry obsessively about someone else and lack emotions for your wellbeing. Working with a therapist on fighting codependency and reigniting your inner spark takes time and practice, but you can do it. Stop letting someone else control your life and find your meaning. Develop your sense of self with help from California Care Detox & Treatment. We provide unmatched care and treatment for all over our clients, no matter their complaints. We want to work with you on your confidence and happiness. We can help you find your independence. Call us at (949) 281-0632 to begin working on yourself today.