Everybody Can't Go With You
From time to time I get an email from someone that has attended one of our events, asking me for advice on what to do regarding a relationship with someone they met at a previous event. Here is the scenario: I made a really good friend about 6 months ago at an event, and we have since had a falling out and now I'm nervous about running into them at another event. The first few times I got emails like this I didn't quite know what to say, but after experiencing the same thing for myself, I now have a little more insight into the situation.
For those of you that don't know, last year my company was bought out and I decided to finally stop kicking and screaming and invest in creating a start up business (MsIndependent) that I had been putting off for ummmmmm about 5 years. I began the process of taking the road less traveled and very quickly and unexpectedly started to see things in the people around me that I wasn't a fan of. I can't say that anyone was 'bad" or that they had done anything wrong, I just didn't see their purpose in my life. My money, emotions, energy, faith, hope, time, talent, and sanity were all being poured into my business, and I had very little of all the above mentioned resources to spare. I had to start deciding quickly who gets what, who gives what, and who I can't afford to give to.
I pulled the plug on a number friendships that were in the background lingering like unfolded laundry. I let the few in my inner circle know what my hopes and dreams were, with the expectation that they would be as excited for me as I was. Big mistake!!!! You wanna find out who your friends are? Start a business. I was immediately bombarded with 21 questions, and not 21 probing questions, but 21 I totally don't believe in you and here's all the reasons why questions. Suddenly I was looking at these people that had always been in my corner throwing punches at me from across the ring.
Now getting back to the emails that I get asking what to do when you have beef with an ex-bestie. Of course if you attend enough MsIndependent events you'll make friends, that's the whole point, but everyone is in your life for a reason and a season. Not everyone is going your way the whole way. Also don't think for a second that longevity implies intimacy in a relationship. You can know someone for a decade and still the moment you change or they do, you are now in a new relationship with new person, and your lives may no longer be complimentary. I'm not afraid of losing friends, I am afraid of losing me to hold onto a friend.
So my advice when falling out with someone is don't think of it as a falling out, think of it as timing out. Maybe you weren't meant to take this journey called life together forever, and your time is simply up. No one is bad, no one has done anything wrong, you've just gone from coffee and cream to oil and water. It just doesn't work anymore. If everyone can be civil and adults then there is no reason why you can't be in the same room meeting other great people that are better suited for the path you're on now. What a great tragedy it would be to miss out on an opportunity to meet someone that might just walk with you for years to come, on the off chance you'll run into the one who's time is up.