Drama Free: Untangling Chaotic Relationships with Nedra Tawwab

Episode 02

Welcome back, Chaos-breakers! We’re here trying to shake things up with another episode in our For the Love of Calming the Chaos–and this ones hitting us right where we live. Relationships; we’ve all got them, some we’re born into, others we choose, and others choose us. But what happens when certain relationships tax our energy, fill us with dread, and drain us of all ability to manage them? We have a great guide today to help us reframe relationships that have become dysfunctional, and how we can minimize the drama and chaos they bring.  Therapist Nedra Tawwab is back on the show, and we couldn’t be happier. Nedra’s wildly popular Instagram account brings us life on the daily with her practical tips on recognizing when relationships are out of whack, how they might have gotten there, and how we can survive and thrive in the midst of it. Nedra has written two best selling books Set Boundaries, Find Peace: A Guide to Reclaiming Yourself, and Drama Free: A Guide to Managing Unhealthy Family Relationships. Nedra and Jen get into the following topics around eradicating relationship drama in our lives:

  • The sometimes difficult but very possible ways to begin creating healthy family dynamics 
  • Finding the courage to have conversations with people when they hurt our feelings 
  • How to create boundaries and what to do when those boundaries aren’t respected
  • Learning how to discern love from dysfunction in our relationships

Life is full of chaos and confusion, and it is important to find a balance between healthy relationships and self-care to maintain peace. Nedra provides us the tools to express ourselves, say no, and be open to uncomfortable conversations. 

Episode Transcript

Hi everybody. Jen Hatmaker here, your host of the For The Love podcast. Welcome to the show. I, this is my kind of series, I think, because not only is it so usable for me, I know it’s usable for you. And so I, I have, I’m just like fascinated with every conversation we have in this series. We are, we are in a whole repertoire called for the Love of Calming the Chaos. And I know, cuz I’m always listening to you that you like me, just, there’s this common sense right now of being just overwhelmed. Kind of an overwhelmed feeling every day, and sometimes even the sense that chaos has replaced any kind of normal flow of life. And, and we are on the receiving end of it. Like things are just happening to us and around us, right? And we’re tossed to and fro by whatever keeps happening.

And we’re too tired to figure out how we even got here in the first place. But sometimes we cause our own overwhelm for a million reasons. I, we try to do it all ourselves or we procrastinate and things pile up, um, causing us way more problems if we’d just tackled it in the moment. That’s one of my, um, key flaws. Um, but sometimes we’re in chaos and we don’t know why. We can’t really pinpoint it. We can’t find the source. We keep making maybe decisions that don’t serve us and invite more chaos into our life. Maybe it’s through the kind of relationship we are in, or maybe we’re self-made medicating with the just poison of our choice, or shutting down altogether, like unable to function. And we just don’t know why. We just keep going– I just can’t, I cannot pull this thread straight.

So we have a friend here today, a friend of the show or this episode, to kind of walk us through some of these ideas, um, particularly by helping us look at how we might have come to the patterns, the responses, and the behaviors that we currently exhibit through our family structures that we grew up in. So returning to the show is Nedra Tawwab, and I just, I love her. Nedra is a licensed therapist who is the queen in my heart of the most practical, actionable advice you can find on the internet these days, honestly. Like, seriously, if you don’t follow her, it’s strange. I often feel like she is reading my daily mail. She’s so gifted at distilling the things that we are often collectively feeling and, and then holding our hands and figuring out how to address it.

Please do follow her on Instagram and I will put links up. It’s gold.  Nedra is the author of the New York Time bestselling book, set Boundaries Find Peace, which we talked about the first time she was on the show. And now she’s written a book that addresses the very topic we wanna cover today. And it’s called (get excited) Drama Free, A Guide to Managing Unhealthy Family Relationships. So Nedra is helping us sort of peel back the curtain here on our earliest relationships with our family of origin and how this often sets the tone for how we navigate life, for better or for worse, right? And she is so good at identifying not just where the problem begins, but what to do with it, right? She tackles what dysfunctional families look and feel like, and then what we’re all here for how to break free.

She’s done a ton of work around boundaries, which are required toward calming the chaos in our lives. And so we’re going to talk to her about; what does this look like practically? Where does the buck stop? What do we do with the discomfort? What do boundaries look like? Are there levels of boundaries? That’s all in this, this is all in here today, you guys, and realize we actually have agency here. We do. And so I, as always, when I walk away from a conversation with Nedra, I just feel like centered and grounded. She is this calming presence of wisdom and instruction. And we’re so lucky to have her back on the show today. So you guys welcome back with me the absolutely wonderful Dr. Nedra Tawwab. 

Mentioned in this Episode: 


Set Boundaries, Find Peace
by Nedra Tawwab


Drama Free
by Nedra Tawwab


Stay Connected with Jen Hatmaker: 


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