I’m staying with a lovely friend in Stockholm, and reminded of how lucky I am to have such amazing people in my life. Guess what she said to me? We were talking about our differences as individuals and daily behavior, and she told me that having me stay with her was good for her. Why? Because having me around stretches her comfort zone and helps her grow, helps her learn to let go and be okay with things not being the way she would otherwise have them.
Who thanks their guests for introducing discomfort and messes in their home?! Extraordinary people. People who are focused on the bright side, ready to stretch themselves, rooted in gratitude. Now, I’m not saying that we all should be hosting guests that push our boundaries all the time – there is a time and place for everything. But let me take this opportunity to ask you about the people in your life.
Surrounding yourself with supportive people is one of the 7 foundations observed in the lives of happy people.
Who’s By Your Side?
Who is a positive influence?
Who inspires you?
Who supports you in pursuing your dreams?
Who is there to offer tough love when needed?
Who reminds you of your magnificence?
Who pushes your buttons and challenges you to grow?
Who mirrors your dark sides, thereby bringing to surface what you need to work on?
Not A Simple Formula
Here is where you need to be discerning. Just because someone is challenging to be around, it doesn’t mean they are a bad influence. But, it also doesn’t mean that any and all challenges are beneficial at any given point in your life. You need to tune in to what is ultimately right for you in your current life, to have direct support and inspiration, as well as some push to grow. If you are already facing multiple challenges in other areas of your life, it may not be the best time to add more challenge.
Build Your Emotional Immune System
I just heard Marci Shimoff use the phrase ‘Emotional Immune System’ in the Deeply Happy series, hosted by Teray Garchitorena Kunishi. Just as you build your physical immune system when going around mingling with germy folk, you want to build up your emotional immune system. This can start with fortifying your community with those who provide optimal support.
Be A Co-Creator In Your Life
Take charge. Know that you have the power to create and influence the course of your life.
Who is lacking in your life? Which relationships need an upgrade in order to be a positive influence in your life? Which relationships do you need to release?
To create successful change, it’s important to have a clear goal, set a firm intention, and maintain awareness. Know that when you align yourself with the creative and infinite source of life, anything is possible, and you will have access to all that you need.
3 More Tips
Let Go to Let In
Just like clearing out your closet to make room for new clothes, releasing relationships that aren’t supporting you will help open up space for new and more aligned relationships.
Some of our relationships don’t need ending, but can benefit from upgrading. What is it that you are here to gain and give by being in relationship with this person? In what areas is it not working for you? What conditions need to shift for the relationship to be a win win? Be firm in holding your ground. With love. If the other party is unable to shift with you, then honor that they have their own path and timing, thank them for the time you’ve shared, and release the relationship.
Are you good at saying goodbyes?
Most likely you grew up with expectations from society to hold onto relationships indefinitely, with the notion that true relationships are meant to last forever. It’s comforting to think that, but nothing in this material world is permanent. There are plenty of amazing relationships that are not meant to last a whole lifetime. Short relationships, whether a few months, weeks, days or hours, can be just as meaningful and beautiful.
If a relationship – friendship, romantic partner, family member – is no longer fulfilling, you are not doing anyone a favor. Faking positive alliance will eat up time and energy that could be directed to better relationships for both parties.
If the other party doesn’t share this view and is upset, it can be challenging. You must stand firm and keep the big picture in mind. Spend extra time with those that understand. Find a mentor or coach that can stand with you and affirm the process.
- Putting on hold: Goodbyes may not be forever. It’s not just romantic relationships that can benefit from occasional time off. Sometimes people’s paths separate for a while but join back together, to continue where they left off, or resume with a new flavor.
- Some healthy goodbyes may be forever, but we don’t always know. It’s okay to part with the exchange of intentions that the partnership will resume if it aligns again, but with no attachments to any particular outcome.
Are you ready to intentionally create a supportive community around you? Who are you ready to release from your support team, and who would you like to invite in? What kind of support do you need to help you through that?