If only humans came with an instruction book…or a warning label…or a money back guarantee. Am I right?
The bad news of course, is that people don’t come with any of these things; and at some point or another, we all get hurt by another human.
The good news is that you have full permission to choose only the people who make you feel good (mostly). I say mostly because I’m fully aware that there are certain situations where we have to deal with unkind people. Sometimes those people are relatives, sometimes they’re colleagues; but I know they exist and I want to honor the fact that life isn’t black and white. Here’s some help for those unkind conversations.
For the rest of the situations you are in charge of the people you hang around with in life. Yes, it may take some trial and error to find the ones who make you feel good but the effort is so worthwhile. The most important piece of the puzzle is realizing you have that choice. You don’t have to let the ones who drag you down stick around!
Think about your relationships – friends, family, colleagues – all of them. If you have a piece of paper, draw a vertical line down the middle. As you’re thinking of the people in your life, put the ones who make you feel good on the left side of that line and the ones who drag you down on the right side of the line. Now think about how you spend your time. Are you spending most of your time with the people on the left? If not, what small changes can you make to start to reduce your time with the people on the right? Maybe it’s leaving a club or organization that’s filled with people on the right side of the page. Maybe it’s saying no to the dinner invitation from someone on the right side of the page. These little shifts give you the time to focus on the people on the left, the ones who make you feel good. There’s no need for dramatic endings, simply shift your time and energy to reflect what feels good!