How to Avoid Bad Relationships

Monish SubherwalCollaborating TogetherLeave a Comment

A lot of people find themselves in bad relationships or relationships that aren’t so…well, empowering.

Why? Well, when you aren’t intentional about your relationships, life tends to set your relationships for you — and sometimes those relationships aren’t the best.

When you are intentional, you get what you want:  be that more happiness, adventure, success, or whatever.

“Intentional Relationships” are ones that YOU craft and put together.  

This is an article on how to be more aware of your relationships and how to start making small tweaks to say no to bad relationships and say yes to good relationships.

A simple example:  My Room

If you were to take a walk into my room, I have been making small changes over the last few months — adding a few new items and posters here and there.

So what?

Well, a lot of what I have been adding have been items or posters related to empowerment. Is this because I’m “the empowerment guy”? Most likely. haha But also because I want to put myself in relationship TO Empowerment.

Everything is relational

‘Nothing ever exists entirely alone; everything is in relation to everything else.” – Buddha

One of the most striking quotes from the Buddha basically says that everything is in relation TO everything else…but what does that mean?

Well, in my opinion, it means that we unconsciously or consciously put ourselves into relationships to other people and things. And its unavoidable.

As long as you’re alive, you will be in relationship TO something.

For example, if you are driving and there is annoying music, then you have put yourself in relationship to that annoying music.

The moment you CHANGE the station, then you have CHANGED your relationships.  You have intentionally put yourself in relationship to something that is better for you.

A lot of times, people have lots of drama in their life because simply they have to live with someone who is creating drama (or they themselves are creating drama), or their life situation is tough and difficult and they have chosen that situation.

So how do we make our relationships more empowering?

Well, the easiest way I know (and it’s pretty obvious) is the put yourself in relationship to things that are more empowering.

What are somethings you are in relationship to?

You could have a relationship to:

  • people (boss, co-workers, friends, family, etc.)
  • things
  • experiences and emotions (negativity, aggressiveness, boredom, anger, happiness, anxiety, etc.)

Experiences and emotions are a bit tricky. Someone could have a disempowering relationship to negativity (for example: whenever they hear negativity they get angry…which means they get negative haha).

I know I have a disempowering relationship to other people’s apathy.  When I see others not caring, it UPSETS me.  It shouldn’t, but it does.  Thus, I have a relationship TO apathy that is not so healthy.

Make sense?

If you do not know the relationship, then most likely something else will set it for you

A lot of times, people say, “Oh, I can’t stand that person” and then go on and on about how that person is annoying.

Or they have drama at work and it really drains them.

How about stepping away from that drama for a short period? Take a walk, go do something else.

A lot of times, we end up in a situation and we ask ourselves, how did I get here?

Well, you put yourself there.

Not to disparage someone’s life situation, but the fact is, we must take responsibility for our relationships.

If you put yourself in relationship to annoying people, you will have to deal with those consequences. How about instead dealing with the consequences of more positive people?

Are you telling me to just cut people out?

I would never tell you to cut people out of your life. I would suggest however, that you take a look at whether certain relationships are what you want. We all must cultivate the relationships we want or instead, choose to put energy and effort into something else.

I used to commute 1.5 hours to work everyday. It KILLED me. I came to work drained and dazed. I came home with a bad mood. I basically had no social life for 6 months, nor did I even have time for gym or anything else.

But was it the traffics fault? Was it the long commute? Curse my life situation! No. I had put myself IN relationship to these things and these were things that did not leave me empowered.

Perhaps for other people they might be OK with the commute, but I had other goals that were not being addressed.

So what did I do?  Well, I paid the cost and moved closer to my job! Makes sense right! Commute ended up being 20 minutes max. More time for fun.

A lot of times we get sucked into relationships that are not empowering to us and for some reason, instead of stopping and considering other more empowering possibilities, we maintain homeostasis and do the same thing over and over again getting more frustrated and complain more and more.  Don’t do that.

Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

– Albert Einstein

Be Intentional With Your Relationships

I want you to start noticing the relationships you are in and seeing if you are content with those relationships.

If you are not, change the relationships to be more empowering and aligned with what you want.

The key is to start small, start somewhere.

Starting small: below are some example of how I have changed my relationship to experiences, things, and people.


One of the things I found myself doing was on my commute, I was getting sick of music. I recall telling myself, “man, what a waste of time!”.

Then for the next 2 weeks I kept saying the same complaint over and over again.  Don’t do that.  Change your relationship TO your music.

So, what was the more empowering thing to do? Well, I put audiobooks on my ipod! Obvious switch, but just notice its me consciously saying, I want to put myself into relationship to something else.

Now, I can listen to whatever I want on my drive and have the choice whenever I want to be more productive. I have put myself in relationship to empowerment.

My Room

Another thing I noticed was how my room was sorta…lame.  It was definitely not inspiring enough.

I started noticing, that “hey, I spend a LOT of time in my room!”.  I wanted to have a place where I come in and be amazed by how beautiful it was.

So what did I do? Instead of complaining, I started adding things that were empowering. I decided to put myself in relationship TO empowering things.

Now, anyone who walks into my room will also be putting themselves in relationship to empowerment.


Even my clothing is a way to put myself in relationship to Empowerment.

I know people say your clothes are a reflection of you. Instead I would like to say that your clothes are a representation of your relationship to your clothes. Weird huh?

Some people really value their clothes and put a lot of time and effort into getting the right look.  Others don’t care.  But it does matter.

You don’t think certain types of people won’t be attracted to your clothing and want to put themselves in relationship to you?




People in your life are putting themselves in relationship to you, your values, and those things you find important. And vice versa.

One thing I realized early on was the need for good quality people in my life. The more you spend time with people who are empowering, the more you are putting yourself in relationship to the things that those people represent.

I have mentors who have their own business, are coaches, are people who value empowerment. Just hanging out with them is putting myself in relationship to those shared values.  

lot of these amazing people I met through PAYING.  Sometimes that is the cost of putting yourself in relationship to them.

This website

Believe it or not, by spending your time and energy reading this article you are putting yourself in relationship to empowerment. This is good.

You could be on your couch watching TV and eating donuts, but you are choosing more positive relationships.

The choice is yours

Eventually, it is your life and it is up to you what you want to put yourself in relationship to. Make the small changes to put yourself in relationship to empowerment and you’ll find you feel better and more rejuvenated.

Your thoughts?

What do you put yourself into relationship to?  Are you doing a good job examining your relationships and making them empowering?  Share your thoughts below!

Stay Empowered,



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