What to do when friends no longer support your path
Oh wow. I agonised for at least an hour over that heading. I really wanted to call it “not everyone in the transit lounge is coming on the plane with you” but google wasn’t understanding the metaphor! It hurts to even read that title. But it doesn’t have to.
Here we are heading for the half way mark of the year, and I’m wondering how your going with all those New Year goals?
Did you pick a word for the year? It might have been shine, or something around being visible, speaking up, owning your truth, being the best version of yourself and all of this sounds pretty good doesn’t it?
How has that been unfolding for you?
I’m wondering because at some point we will get to a place where we can get stuck, we stop, we lose confidence and baulk at the job in front of us. We decide that perhaps that ‘thing’ we were doing wasn’t for us or that we have changed our minds. We start looking around us for signs that we’re on the right path or for confirmation from potentially the wrong people that we’re ok.
Often we receive difficult to hear feedback on what we’re doing because you’re making changes in your world or how you’re operating or showing up and that effects other people. Not just you.
With my coaching clients the first module I send them regardless of what program they have opted in for always includes the ‘expect kick back’ warning.
Not everyone is going to be thrilled about the brave new you you are creating. Not everyone is going to be thrilled with the wonderful goal posts you’re shifting (or erecting), even if you involve them in the process. Even when they are intelligent ‘conscious’ aware people, they are still human and still prone to taking things personally, making stories up that aren’t true and the killer trifector doing both of these things AND finding supporting evidence and then not telling you about it until they reach breaking point.
What does this look like? …… let me give you a hint…
In your lounge room, in your office more often than not in your inbox.
Yup. It sucks. It really hurts. You might also fall prey to being human at this point and lash back.
If this is happening or has happened for you. I’d love to you stop and take stock, because this painful little saga, can actually be a sign of good things unravelling and of healthy necessary change.
You will though need to pause, take some deep breaths, ask for some space, take stock of what is real FOR YOU and if you don’t have anyone really solid in your corner please find a Therapist/ Coach/ Counsellor to be that person. You are going to need them. You do not need more drama at this point. You don’t need well meaning people taking sides or saying you need to take the blame.
There may well be many levels of situation going on here. But essentially, you shifted the goal posts and these very human people went looking for you at the old goal post, the fact that you weren’t there has upset them. (if you get my metaphor)
This isn’t for you to fix.
Now all this might sound just a little dramatic, sometimes it is and sometimes it isn’t, but remember back up there at the top where you asked for life to change, to shift things up a little? You wanted to be seen or heard or to speak your truth, you wanted to step outside the way you have previously operated and grow. Did you think it was going to be a happy little stroll along a neatly paved path?
I am the first one to debunk the whole ‘nothing good come easily’ myth but we don’t exist in a vacuum. When we start to change the relationship that we are having with ourselves, it changes everything slowly but surely (usually for the better) in our external world.
This includes other people, not everyone is here for the long haul and thats ok. If they leave, that’s also ok. It’s not about you.
Let me repeat that because we can be very egoic creatures!
It’s. Not. About. You.
In some cases they are going to ebb away quite naturally as relationships are prone to do, a reason a season and all that. In other cases there will be kicking and screaming and blaming and a whole lot of ‘you changed’ and whole lot of misguided ‘help’ in the form of “because I love you and I’m hurting I think I have the right to tell you how I think you’re doing it all wrong and this here is how you should live your life”. And for that last one you are going to need the help from that aforementioned therapist. Because you’re going to have to NOT react when triggered and to grieve the hell out of that very tricky situation.
And it’s this my friends that is usually well and truly in the too hard basket for a lot of people and we can find ourselves opting for stepping back into that old persona and choosing to see this backlash as a reason that the ‘thing’ we were looking for or going after isn’t ‘it’ after all or that it’s all really too hard. And you know what . That’s ok too.
But if you’re at that turning point before you slide back into an old era (that doesn’t really serve you anymore) what can you do to support yourself?
Here’s my go to’s ;
And by this I mean actual real professional grown up help. Not a spiritual guru wanna be that will advise you to bypass the hell out of all of the above. A business coach/ life coach/ holistic counsellor/ psychologist. Some one grounded in a very practical down to Earth profession that can hold solid space for you when you’re vulnerable and in pain. In many places as is the case here in Australia you can access almost free assistance if referred by your GP, most private health funds offer healthy rebates and this most certainly comes under the heading of professional development expenses if you’re in a helping profession.
This is where you can get spiritual. Seek solace in your beliefs of being supported and connected to a higher power. Whether they be in a church, or a yoga practice. Whether its a meditation practice you do each day, mantras you chant, prayers you repeat, or a community service you perform. Wear your malas, light your candles, water your herb garden, heavens, chat to your deceased great Aunty Myrtle if it helps to bring your heart solace. Also, please be real with yourself. Now isn’t the time to get up on your high horse!
Writing down how your feeling in a private place preferably with a pen and paper is such an important discipline. I use the word discipline here because when we are feeling high emotion we will want to take physical action to dissipate what is often a really intense situation. Firstly though we need to empty out our thoughts and feelings in a really safe space and get clarity for ourselves. Writing everything down gives us just enough space to do this.
To stay clear around our emotions and to create healthy new elements in our lives it helps if we have an embodied place to hang out in. And our bodies are really the only place we can do that! This doesn’t mean to suddenly decide to run a marathon (although you might!) , but physical movement of a sort that you find enjoyable is essential. It helps support healthy biochemistry essential for balanced and appropriate moods, to alleviate stress, and improve sleep.
This is just the start of course. Often these challenges occur in much more established relationships within families and spouses. My own divorce is a prime example of this.
I hope this has inspired you to seek support in your life from any of the sources I have mentioned.
If you’d like to know more about my mentoring and support for health practitioners check this out. And I have a new Life Coaching course called My divine Feminine Compass opening soon designed to offer support to women navigating transition and change. If you’d like to know more contact me here.