Did you know that the people who you spend time with, associate with, and hang around with, all contribute to your overall energy? It might explain why you feel amazing when you spend time with your best friend, but maybe a little less excited when you see that girl who you’ve always known, but never really clicked with.
People have the ability to completely energize us, and completely drain us.
Truthfully, I’ve known both. I think we’ve all known both. If I asked you to name someone who made you feel alive and inspired, and then someone else who took all of your energy to see, I bet you’d be able to. It sounds like a negative way to look at people but it isn’t. It’s reality. It’s not mean to like some people more than others because of how they make you feel, or because of how they treat you, or because of how you two get along. There are billions of people in this world, and you’re not required to like all of them.
Surprise! You don’t need to like everyone.
But what you need to do, is be in tune with the people in your life. Understand what kind of people they are – how they make you feel and how they energize you. And most importantly, know if they really, truly care about you.
Relationships stress us out. Heck anything in life can stress us out, but life is harder when your relationships are constantly draining your energy. I’m sure you’ve always heard “quality over quantity” and that’s how I strive to live my life these days. Do things that matter. Put all of my love into the things I enjoy, and forget about the things that don’t matter. Heck it doesn’t always work but I try. And this is the same attitude we should take in our relationships and with our friends. Love those who love you, excite you and want the best for you. Leave those who drain you, stress you out, or make you feel inferior in some way. A few close friends is much, much rewarding than many mediocre friends. It’s important to nurture the positive and let go of the negative. This change can help you in so many other areas of your life as well.
How much time do you give to the people who matter, and how much time are you wasting with people who bring you down?
Seriously. This is the biggest waste of your time. Nurture those relationships that reward you, but don’t feel obligated to feed or nurture a relationship that is only bringing negativity. Remember. You are worth it. You are worthy of happiness and positivity and support and love. You don’t deserve negativity in your life. It will only bring you down.
If you have friends like this, friends who drain you or stress you out, it’s time to detox your relationships.
Do you need a friendship detox?
Answer the following questions about the people you spend time with:
- How do I feel when we make plans? Am I hesitant or excited?
- While we’re spending time, do I constantly wonder when it’ll be over?
- When I leave, do I feel drained? Stressed out? Or am I happy and inspired?
- Does this friend support me whole-heartedly? Do they want to see me succeed?
- Is this friend competitive with me, in a negative way?
- Do I love this person? What do they mean to me?
- When I am happy, is this person happy for me? Similarly, when I am sad, do they empathize?
- Does this person genuinely care about me? Do they ask me about my life, or do they only talk about theirs?
- Do they only talk about their problems with me? Or do they actively seek my advice to solve their problems?
- How would I feel if this person wasn’t in my life anymore?
Based on your answers to the above questions, I imagine you’d be able to figure out if this person was an overall positive light in your life, or if they bring negativity. it’s so very important to take stock of these people and make sure that you’re not spending too much time with those who bring you down.
How do you detox negative friends?
This is where it gets tricky. If you’ve identified people in your life who you are ready to let go of, the hardest part is actually letting go. Chances are, there will be anger and sadness during the process, but don’t forget why you’re doing it. You’re doing it because your time and energy deserves to be spent with people who are positive.
So how do you do it? You just start. Slow down your responses to emails, text messages and phone calls. Eventually you can phase out and stop answering them altogether.
Now, some people who are confrontational might ask why you’re ignoring them. And some might argue that they deserve an explanation. You can decide if you want to offer one. Chances are they will take your response and turn it into anger. They will become defensive and take it personally. In many cases, this could make matters feel worse at first but sometimes it’s necessary for closure. But also remember that the lack of response speaks for itself, so they don’t always need an explanation. Depending on your relationship, confrontation may be necessary. Just prepare and acknowledge the mess, and remind yourself why you’re doing it.
No matter how you do it, do it gracefully.
Don’t force them out in anger or frustration. Don’t cause unnecessary tension. You can apologize for being distant, or for being quiet, but you don’t need to explain yourself. If you do confront them, make sure you’re clear about why you’re doing it. Avoid personal attacks, but be clear about the issues that have brought you to this point. No matter how they react, remember you did this for a reason and their anger is not directed towards you. It often towards themselves.
You’ve detoxed, now what?
Don’t let yourself feel guilty.
It’s almost impossible to follow-through on this point, but don’t feel guilty. Seriously. You did what you did for you. You are your own best friend and need to look out for yourself first. If they’ve brought negativity and stress into your life, then they don’t deserve your attention.
And this is not to say you won’t be friends again down the road. Things can change and people can change. I’ve had a good friend go through a phase where all they talked about was themselves, said some negative things to me, and never asked me how I was. I drifted away for a bit, but eventually things changed. She started asking how I was. She was genuinely interested in my life again. She had changed. Be open to the possibility, but allow them to come to you if it happens.
Surround yourself with positive people.
Those people who you identified as your bright and shining lights? Spend your time with them! Call your girlfriends up for date night. Host a tea party. Go to a coffee shop together. Spend time with those who energize you and you’ll forget about the negativity you lost. Actually, these positive people might remind you that you made the right choice by making you realize how amazing supportive people are!
In case you’re wondering, I have had to detox someone from my life. She was a nice person, but she had some big troubles in her life and she wasn’t doing anything to help them. In fact, she was making them worse. She’d come to me for advice, and do the complete opposite of what I suggested. Don’t get me wrong, she can live her life however she pleases, but it wasn’t helping her situation. Eventually I just had to stop spending time with her because I found talking to her incredibly stressful. I realized that I had to look out for myself and my happiness. She was upset, but I don’t regret the decision I made.
No matter what, your life is worthy of happiness and positivity. Negativity doesn’t deserve a place in your life. Always remember this, and you should be set to live a happier and healthier life.