Some relationships do more harm than good.
Relationships (friendships included) are formed to enhance our lives, not make it more stressful.
I’ve been involved in all sorts of toxic relationships. I was in a an on-again, off-again fling that lasted four years because I just could not walk away until finally I got some sense knocked into me and gave it one big BYE FELICIA. I was in more toxic friendships than I could count because I hated “giving up” and believed in 3rd, 4th and 5th chances. I’m someone who is loyal to a fault, but the only person that that has ever hurt in the long run has been me.
The truth of the matter is that not every “friend” you have wants the best for you, may not have the best intentions, and may not be as loyal as you once perceived them to be.
[highlight]When a relationship causes more hurt feelings than happiness, you need to take a step back and re-evaluate. [/highlight]When you feel like the relationship has become a one-way street where you are the only one calling/texting/making the effort, you need to stop and give the other person a chance to show up for you. It is only then that you get some real answers. I call this the trial period.
Why should you have to put your relationships on trial? More often than not, if you even need to go through the trial period, you already know the outcome.
Before I left on my 3-week trip to Europe not too long ago, I felt like I was giving to some relationships more than I was getting, and to be honest, I found myself being unhappy and wanting to lash out because I was so hurt. My life, my needs, and my goals are just as important as the next person’s. I’m just as busy, just as tired, just as stressed, and just as overwhelmed. That’s life. Sometimes we put more on our plates than we can handle. That doesn’t give me an excuse to be a bad friend. I don’t expect someone to text or call me everyday or have time to see me — ain’t nobody got time for that — but I do expect a friend to give a ‘congrats’ when I land a TV gig or something important, make an effort to see me before I leave or get back from a long trip, and check in every once in a while just to see how I’m doing.
Why? Because I do it. Frequently. A text takes maybe 5 seconds out of your day.
I set sail on my trip with a heavy heart, needing some answers. I did a lot of soul searching. I took a step back from my life and re-evaluated. I thought about what has been making me sad, what has been draining me emotionally, and what I really want out of my life moving forward. Those who know me well enough know I had been going through another rough time and that the purpose of me leaving for almost a month was to re-center myself.
After 3-4 weeks I came back re-centered and with a clear head. There was nothing left for me to do except see who would show up for me once I settled back into real life — who wanted to hear about everything, see me, and just catch up. I didn’t need to ask the questions anymore because deep down, I already knew the answers. And in a way, I felt at peace. Very hurt, but very at peace.
[quote style=”boxed”]It’s funny how once you get rid of all the negative energy surrounding you how many great things come to fruition. [/quote]
Since the second I arrived back home, I’ve started to see the beginnings of things I’ve only dreamed of happening. The creative juices are flowing. The opportunities are presenting themselves. More positive people have stepped forward and into my life. And for the first time in a really long time, I am content.
Sure, through all of this I’ve had to learn to mourn some friendships and there are definitely times where I cry my eyes out because I don’t want to let go. However, wanting is different than needing, and in this case, I’m learning when I need to just let it go. But more importantly, I am learning to put my own well-being first.
Be selfish. Give what you get. It’s important to brag about your friends and be their biggest cheerleader — but only if they do the same for you. Open up your heart to new adventures and opportunities. Focus on yourself instead of trying to compete with the people around you. Remember that there is so much more to life than the bubbles we confine ourselves to and that just because one person was not good to you doesn’t mean the next person will be the same.[highlight] I’m starting to realize that a major key to happiness is not being selfless, but knowing when to be selfish. [/highlight]