Such an easy thing to say, yet for me, it’s one of the hardest things to do.
Growing up, my personality has always been extreme. Whether happy, sad, excited, angry, or tired, I always experience the strongest parts of these feelings. It’s something I have always struggled with. I jump to conclusions, display my initial reactions, and I let my feelings overtake my actions. I really doubt that anyone I know would describe me as “calm” or “thoughtful.” To me, this is a shame, because it’s all I’ve ever strived to be, but particularly in recent years.
Being someone who experiences the more extreme ends of all feelings, I tend to dwell on negativity, yet I don’t really do anything to fix that. While I am constantly reaching for peace of mind and positive influences, I don’t always really see them, and I tend to let things affect me way more than I should. To put it more clearly, I take everything personally, and I mean everything. I drive myself crazy reading too much into situations that have nothing to do with me. I get mad at Dom for silly things, and then I think about these silly things for the months following. I keep people around who I don’t particularly connect with or enjoy knowing. I remain friends with people who refuse to understand that a child changes lives in a good way, and so Dom and I have grown and changed in ways we love and appreciate. I hold on to parts of the past, present, and future that I don’t want to hold on to because I feel guilty letting them go. I feel like I constantly have to show up, put forth effort, and even if I leave these situations feeling like shit, at least I tried, right?
And lately, I have been asking myself, “what’s the point?”
As a part of something I have been practicing lately (for several years, actually), I am doing a lot of self-reflection. I read a blog post the other day that discussed happiness and six different ways to reach it. One of the points deeply resonated with me, and part of it read, “You have no obligation to keep anyone in your life. You have the right to choose who you want close to you. Choose those who uplift you, support you, and surround you with good vibes.”
Immediately, I thought of a girl I knew who I am no longer friends with. She was my “best friend” for several years, yet every time we spoke, I left with a sick feeling in my gut. Being friends with her felt like it was more out of obligation than enjoyment. It was all about what was on paper. There were few moments in our friendship where I felt like I wasn’t being put up to something, being judged, or held to standards I couldn’t and didn’t want to fill. After years of being friends, I couldn’t do it anymore, and I cut ties. Abruptly. I probably could have gone about this in different ways, but I think the timing felt natural to both of us, and we were both ready to move on with our lives to parts, places, and people that all brought us more happiness than we received from being friends with each other. After reflecting on this experience yesterday while practicing yoga, I knew what I needed to do in life: cut ties with the negativities around me. The people, the situations, the moments, the past.
While I’m sure this journey towards my greater goals and happiness will be a long one, the first step is finding what brings me those good vibes and holding onto whatever that is for dear life.
So discover, find, and grasp, I will. And this time, I won’t let go.