With the coming of the New Year a mere two days away, it’s hard not to reflect on our previous year. Thoughts that often come to mind are centred around goals and accomplishments, alongside challenges and shortcomings. While doing an inventory check on where 2017 took us, it’s important to consider how 2017 served us – essentially, what propelled us forward, what held us back, and most crucially, what needs letting go of in 2018.
As we get older (yes, it’s happening!), we come to recognize we have less time and energy and more and more responsibility pilling on. It’s sad, but it’s a fact of life. No longer can we sleep in until well after noon and party until the wee hours of the morning. Well, at least if we do, there comes major consequences such as a three-day hangover and a major lack of productivity.
As women, we place extreme value on our relationships. In fact, often, it’s how we come to identify ourselves – mother, daughter, wife, sister, friend, etc. And while staying connected and forming bonds and community with others is a part of our genetic makeup, women can get too wrapped up in serving those around us, that we forget to consider how these relationships are serving us.
Here are the seven relationships you should be leaving behind in 2017.
1. Anyone who is making you feel less
The role of women and the expectations placed on them has changed significantly over the last few decades. We are now much more educated than our male counterparts, and our career opportunities are broadening, with many women becoming entrepreneurs carving their own paths. We are in full control of when we want to start a family, if we want to start a family and with who we want to start a family. Women are taking control, acting bravely, being bold and fearless – aka essentially doing whatever the fuck we want, whenever the fuck we want, with whoever the fuck we want. It’s a beautiful time.
However, with great responsibility and opportunity, unfortunately comes great criticism. Whether it’s the mother-in-law who thinks you are only worthy for your uterus, the partner who thinks your career isn’t as valuable as his or hers, or the friend who thinks your choice to embark on the path to motherhood is a waste of your potential – it’s time to take their opinions and toss them. No one should make you feel less. We repeat, no one should make you feel less. You are a fierce, talented, intelligent and badass woman – who’s doing her life on her own terms. So, if anyone in your life isn’t celebrating that and making you feel worthy, they aren’t worth your time.
2. Anyone who is not supportive of you
This type of relationship differs slightly from number one, in the sense that it has less to do with your identity as a person and more with your goals and ambitions. As the lovely Reese Witherspoon recently said, “Run away from a man who can’t handle your ambition…We have to do our part to change the idea that a woman with passion and ambition is out only for herself.” This also applies to any woman as well. If someone can’t handle your ambition – they aren’t worth your time. Whether it’s starting your own business, tackling a fitness challenge or changing your diet, if someone is not willing to support you on your journey, find someone that will.
Most dreams and goals require serious focus, extreme dedication and unwavering passion. Because of this, you’ll need a strong cheer squad that will back you up when you second guess yourself, who will talk you off the cliff, and who will pick you up and put you back on your feet when you fall. Or hell, maybe just someone who knows when to show up with a bottle of Merlot.
Surround yourself with a support network who will feed into your passion, not suck it dry. Fill your heart with what’s important and what you need, and be done with all the rest.
3. Anyone who is only willing to work around their schedule
Everyone is busy. Let us repeat, everyone is busy. We all have the same amount of time as the person beside us – 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This will never change. So, if you have someone in your life that is only ever willing to put in the effort when it serves them best, it’s likely time to pump the brakes. Those that care for us most will always show up when we need them, regardless of what they have going on at the time.
Obviously be respectful of other people’s schedules and timelines too. You can’t expect someone to drop everything every time you holla, but if you’re noticing a trend in your relationship where the person will only spend time with you on their timeframe, depending on what they need and is never willing to compromise or budge, you might want to reconsider how valuable this relationship actually is. We’re willing to bet, it’s time to fold.
4. Anyone who is an energy suck
Have you ever spent time with someone and left feeling energized, inspired and refreshed? Now, have you also ever spent time with someone who leaves you feeling negative, frustrated, irritated and tired? There’s a big difference, isn’t there?
Everyone goes through rough times, and you’d be a shitty partner/friend/daughter/human if you left them as soon as times got tough or when they are in a rough patch. But there’s also the type of people who thrive off playing the victim and are stuck in the past, unwilling to do anything to change the present. These types of relationships aren’t ones you need forging forward into 2018.
5. Anyone who no longer shares your values or priorities
People grow and change all the time – sometimes in sync with you and sometimes not. As a result, it’s unfair to assume this would have no effect whatsoever on your relationships. As the saying goes, “a reason, a season, a lifetime.” While, none of us want to look at our closest relationships and imagine those people not playing as vital of a role in our lives two, five, 10 or 20 years from now, the reality is things change.
Some people are meant to come into our lives for a reason – to teach us something, to open our eyes to something, or to simply show us just how much trouble a bottle of tequila can bring. While others are meant to come into our lives for a season – maybe it’s to help us get through high school or college, our early twenties or a trek through Europe. These relationships are not any less valuable, they just don’t necessarily have what it takes to transform, transpire and evolve into lifelong relationships. And there’s nothing wrong with this. Rather than force something that isn’t meant to be, look back on the relationship fondly and make space for new reasons and seasons.
6. Anyone who is flaky as fuck
Ugh. There is nothing worse than a flaky friend.
You know the type. You make plans and suddenly an hour before you meet up he or she cancels your plans. Or comes up with a thousand different excuses of why he or she can’t ever get together.
Save yourself the time and the energy and move on.
7. Anyone who is abusive
When we hear the word abuse, we often only think of physical abuse, but there’s also mental and emotional abuse too, which are just as detrimental and dangerous.
If anyone is abusing you physically, mentally, and/or emotionally, get these people out of your life immediately. No one deserves this type of treatment, ever. And as much as you think you’re to blame or that things will change, you aren’t and they won’t.
Although these relationships make it difficult for one to see and think clearly, please know you are worthy of love, respect and kindness.
Okay ladies, now it’s time to get in formation and make 2018 the best year for you. May you continue to be your fierce, badass, confident, intelligent and beautiful self and surround yourself with people who recognize this, love and respect you, value your time and who will help push you towards your goals and dreams.