Weekly advice column, Hosted by Sofia Sperling.
Sofia is a psychology student, and self love & women’s rights advocate. She has been sharing her own struggles with depression and anxiety openly on her platforms for years in order to remind people that they are not alone, and to fight stigmas of mental illness.
How do I let go of a toxic friend?
Before I answer this I just want to emphasize the importance of those you surround yourself with and the importance of letting people go people who do nothing to benefit you.
Letting go of a toxic friend can be something very tricky if the relationship has lasted a long time or they are someone very close to you, but you have to remember that you will be better off without them. The best way to go letting go of a toxic relationship would differ from person to person but here is some general advice:
Write out the pros and cons of your relationship to solidify your need to move on from the toxic environment caused by that relationship. (This will be good to refer to if you’re ever feeling regret towards ending your friendship)
Think about the way this person would react and decipher the best way to go about it; either telling them straight up, being euphemistic, or kind of letting things fade out naturally. By no means should you cut them off without discussion or warning unless their toxicity revolves around abuse (in that case it might be best to just be blunt and then block them from your life physically, mentally, and through social media and whatnot).
If you truly care for their wellbeing but your relationship is causing you turmoil, try to be straight up about it. You never know if the person is unaware of the distress they are causing you, and maybe by voicing that they will recognize their need to change. In this case, give them the chance, and if things don’t end up getting better, part ways.
Being euphemistic may be the most universal way to go about it. Creating space between you and your friend would be a good place to start to establish that you need that space but then tell them nicely that you will feel better off without them.
Overall, I would say to create space between you and your toxic friend (stop seeing them as much, or hitting them up, etc.) and then discuss in a civil manner if necessary and if possible. If their reaction is one of anger or violence, it’ll only prove to you more that you need to let this person go. It is not selfish to move on, even if someone has been in your life a long time.
I’m really struggling at the moment with moving forward. I feel stuck in a cycle of…just, badness I guess. I overeat, I procrastinate, I’m negative, I’m overthinking and I feel like my relationships are all falling apart. I intend to eat healthy, exercise every day, spread love and think positively. I feel very frustrated at myself for not following through with my intentions and also frustrated at myself for indulging in so much self pity.
I’m trying so hard to break out of this rut but I feel so sensitive that even the tiniest thing seems to make me crumble. Do you have any tips for committing to change and following through with it in a sustainable way?
It can often be unmotivating to feel like you’re stuck in a cycle, but the only way to get out of it is to push yourself to do so. Of course it is easier for things to just keep going as they are, even if it is a bad cycle, because it’s easier to let things fall apart then to push all the pieces back together, but you will never feel better if you don’t push yourself!
This is not what you’re going to want to hear, probably, but intent is only so much if not followed through with action and the only person that can truly push yourself to change is yourself. Of course that is easier said than done, but it truly is a personal thing.
Tips I would have for committing to this change would be to make a plan and a goal. Be realistic with yourself while making these, but also challenge yourself. Even if you never look back on your plan or your goal, writing them out will be motivating!
In order to master anything, including a new mindset or lifestyle, you must practice. At first it’ll be hard but overtime you will embody that positive attitude. The best way to practice is by talking yourself through it all. When you’re thinking about your next meal, tell yourself how great you’ll feel after eating something healthier. When you start to become negative, remind yourself of the beauty and positivity around you.
Work everyday on loving yourself. I think that’s the most important first step because with that, healthier life choices will come more naturally. Think about what’s best for you, whether that’s positivity, a healthy meal, or pushing yourself to workout. But don’t get mad at yourself for not always following through. You might have a bad day that leaves you sulky and unable to work out. Or you may go out and crave pizza and indulge in a few too many slices, but who cares!! As long as you’re happy and looking out for yourself that’s all that matters ! It all takes time, but if you push yourself to get there, soon it will be just another part of your life : – )
Whenever I’m on Instagram or YouTube In the back of my mind I’m so jealous of all these content creators with all their different talents- film, music, dance, art, makeup, etc. I feel like I haven’t mastered anything and that I should have started developing some sort of talent years ago. I’m at a low point in my life and I need to know how to break out of my rut.
The first thing you need to recognize is that comparing yourself to anyone will only do harm. You are your own unique being, who is growing independently, was raised differently, and has a different thought process then everyone else. On top of that it is important to emphasize the difference in growth that everyone has. Some people are born prodigies or have connections through families, while others have to work hard to grow their talents or build their connections. Some people get out of high school and start their passion right away, or become lucky and discovered, but others go to school for years and years until they can finally reap the glory of their growth.
Stop worrying about what other people are doing, especially on the internet. Chances are there lives are nothing like they seem on the profile. Focus on finding yourself instead. Find things that make you happy and feel fulfilled. Think about what you can see yourself doing for the rest of your life. Find something that you want to do now, and pursue it! It doesn’t have to be monumental. Pick up a paintbrush or buy a bike! Just focus on making the you right now happy and overtime you will find your calling, you will find your passion. And who cares how long it takes you to get there, if you love it, it shouldn’t matter and just because you’re not famous on the internet for doing something, doesn’t mean that what you do is unimportant or invalid.
I am a 15 year old girl who is home schooled and lives in the suburbs. My parents are really strict and conservative, and they are constantly trying to get me to conform into their idea of “a perfect girl”. Im not aloud to wear skirts above the knee, even slightly tight pants, shorts, tank tops, or even bathing suits because it “tempts boys and they can’t control themselves”. They think my art is “weird and immoral” (because I typically use women as my subjects) and Im constantly getting into arguments with them about politics, veganism, and equality. I feel trapped, even though I try to make the best of my situation. I love them and I know they want the best for me, but sometimes I can’t help but feel resentful. Any advice?
First off I’d like to apologize for being in environment where you don’t feel accepted or supported. I can’t imagine how hard that can be at such a transitional time in your life, but it seems as though you have a really great head on your shoulders.
I think the best thing to is respectfully talk to them. Let them know that you respect their views but that doesn’t mean you have to agree with them or conform to them. If you talk to them in a very mature way, separating yourself from the resentment you feel towards them, they may respect what you have to say more. Let them know that you are young and finding yourself and at this moment, this is the person you are and all you want from them is their unconditional love and support. Also let them know how their comments affect you. No matter your differing views, a parent should never make you feel bad for being you. Tell them you love being weird, and you would prefer for them not to belittle you for it.
After that, if they don’t respond openly, maybe discuss with them how you can make it work together. Make compromises, if possible. Sadly, you are young and still under the control of your parents and there’s only so much you can do besides adhere to them. Try and be yourself within their constraints, let your art flow and disregard their skepticism. Soon enough you’ll be able to move out and explore yourself and the world without their pressures.
send in your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
***You have compete anonymity when sending questions to sofia, but if we hear that you are planing on hurting yourself or someone else, we are mandatory reporters. Please note that this advice column is not a substitute for professional help. If you are facing serious family, personal, or mental issues, seek direct help***
Dating Abuse & Domestic Violence – 1-866-331-9474
Depression & Suicide – 866-488-7386
Child Abuse – 1-800-422-4453
National Runaway Safeline – 1-800-786-2929
National Eating Disorders Helpline – (800) 931-2237.
LGBTQ+ Support Hotline – 1-888-843-4564
Free Therapy and Counseling – Click Here
Sofia is a Hollywood native going to school for psychology and gender studies. In her free time she likes to paint, read, and pet lots of dogs. She lives for creativity, does yoga to start her day, and jams out to the Doors. Find her: Instagram // Twitter