Ain’t no one got that much extra to give.
I coached a client this week and as I hung up I was overwhelmed with gratitude hearing how proud she was of herself. She put her foot down with someone who was sucking energy from her. Someone that didn’t deserve or earn that energy. Energy that she can be focusing on her kids, her work and herself.
I was reminded how anytime I’ve cut someone loose from my life, I’ve gained… perspective, freedom, happiness, and space for someone new. I’ve agonized over letting friends go who I felt didn’t value me as much as I did them. I’ve cried over lost love. I’ve let angst turn to apathy. And the loss has always benefitted me in the end.
Changing “but” to “and” (as in the previous sentence) when communicating has a more positive impact. The word “but” is minimizing and can be passive-aggressive. Using “and” instead is more powerful and takes more ownership over your intent. Saying, “But the loss has…” takes away from my message which is while these things have happened to me, I’ve learned from them and, well, I win.
I am a firm believer in the idea that when you shift your energy to gratitude, amazing things happen. I can now look back on my losses and be grateful for what they have brought to me. Losing people from my life that take energy and love without reciprocating allowed me to give those things to those who truly deserve them. And the experiences and love I’ve gotten in return has been blissful and fulfilling.
As a coach, I work with my clients to have boundaries and enough self-respect to know when they’re being taken advantage of by someone they care about. In the (not so distant) past, I have allowed myself to be manipulated to fulfill someone else’s needs. It’s taken practice of self-awareness to get to the point where I can look back and realize that there was a reason I allowed myself to be taken advantage of and to acknowledge what I’ve learned from the experience…. usually that others feed off my energy and enjoy how they feel around me even if they don’t know how to reciprocate, but I digress.
When you find your people/person and get back what you give, well… that’s the most fulfilling of all relationships! So to those I’ve had to let go and say goodbye to, thank you. Thank you for helping me practice self-awareness and for making me a better version of myself so that I now show up more completely for the ones who value me completely.
If there is someone in your life that you feel you give way more to than you get back, it’s time to move on. Thank them (in your head.. otherwise it could be awkward) for the life experience and start the process of extraction. This could look like a whole series of “sorry I can’t make it tonight” responses or just ignoring demanding texts. The power you gain when you let angst turn to apathy is pretty awesome. Harness the power, like a brave peacock…