I wholeheartedly believe that people can be in your life for a season (a short time), a reason (to teach you a spiritual lesson) or a lifetime.
As you grow and evolve, it stands to reason that your friendships will grow and evolve too. Some will grow at the same rate, in the same direction and you’ll become even closer than before.
Others will grow at different rates, slowly in different directions and soon you’ll find yourself wondering what you have in common anymore.
This can be heartbreaking. The feeling of loss and despair when you realise that someone you shared so many amazing memories with and thought would be in your life forever is a different person. You don’t recognise her anymore. You don’t really have much to talk about or even have much in common anymore. It’s bloody hard.
I get it. I truly do. Because it’s happened to me. I felt this friendship slip away. I tried (in vain) to hold on tight, even changing who I was in order to keep the relationship alive. I blamed myself, thought I wasn’t good enough anymore, questioned my ability to be a good friend – I really felt like crap.
“Why can’t it be the way it was?”
With a heavy heart, I’m here to tell you that it will never be the same. Ever. If you are going through a bit of a friendship shake up, you might be feeling this too. Wishing and hoping that things would “get back to normal”.
But there is no more normal. You are experiencing a NEW normal. Once people change, it’s hard to change back. Growth is only in one direction, up.
It’s important that you don’t take their growth for your own failure. They are on their own journey and it has nothing to do with you. It really is them – not you.
It’s also a time to take stock of who YOU have become. Who are you really? What are your beliefs and values? Once you are clear on this, who in your life reflects these same values and beliefs? Those are the people you should hang around and spend your time with. Get brutally honest with who you want to spend your time and energy with. Follow the joy. If the relationship still has you feeling great about yourself, then definitely keep it alive. But if you don’t look forward to hanging out with that person, dreading the conversations or just leave each encounter feeling worse about yourself – then it’s time to lovingly say good bye.
Remember that some friendships will only last a season. And now it’s time for a new season. The season of YOU.
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